Out-Of-State Resident Tests Positive For Coronavirus In Anchorage Before Traveling To Bethel

Jun 25, 2020

A COVID-19 test sample is collected from the drive-thru test site run by the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation on April 14, 2020 in Bethel, Alaska.
Credit Katie Basile / KYUK

The Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation has announced the 11th case of COVID-19 related to the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

On June 25, YKHC announced that an out-of-state resident had tested positive for the coronavirus in Anchorage before traveling to Bethel. However, the individual did not receive news of the positive test result until after they’d already arrived in Bethel, where they are currently self-isolating. The health corporation says that it has contacted everyone who had been in close proximity with the person to provide instructions on testing and precautions to take.

In a press release, YKHC said that it is “highly confident this is a travel-related case” and that “known close contacts of the positive case are minimal.” YKHC is offering free COVID-19 testing next week to anyone in Bethel who is concerned about possible exposure to the virus. The testing will be offered at the drive-thru testing site at the Bethel hospital on Wednesday, July 1 from noon to 4 p.m. No appointment or referral is necessary.

COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Alaska. On June 24, state health officials reported the highest one-day increase of new cases yet, at 44. That includes 25 Alaskans and 19 nonresidents. The total number of cases statewide is 816. 

Although the state has reopened most of the economy, YKHC has continued to urge the public to follow basic precautions to keep the disease from spreading in the community: avoid non-essential travel, practice handwashing and social distancing, wear a mask in public, and frequently disinfect high-touch surfaces in your homes.

Symptoms of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, include fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, diarrhea, and a diminished sense of taste or smell. Anyone who has these symptoms is asked to not go see a medical provider, but instead to call their village clinic or the Bethel hospital at 907-543-6949.