ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) – Gov. Mike Dunleavy said he will make an announcement surrounding the 14-day self-quarantine for people coming into Alaska from out of state on Friday. The quarantine is a part of Health Mandate 010 and is set to expire on June 2 unless extended or modified.
The governor will make an announcement about the mandate at a press conference Friday. Dunleavy has attributed the low total cases of COVID-19 in the state to the mandatory quarantine but said a large part of Alaska’s economy relies on tourists coming into the state.
“We’re working on some protocols to be able to try to have some outside folks come to Alaska to help with the very businesses that we’re talking about today that are seasonal, that are tourist-related,” Dunleavy said.
Thursday, the state saw the largest single-day report in cases in over a month. Thirteen positive cases were reported to the state Wednesday. The state releases the numbers a day later.
“From our perspective, there’s no cause for alarm with these numbers,” Dunleavy said.
Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink said there has been an increase in hospital testing for the virus this week. Thursday was the second-highest day of testing in the state since the pandemic began.
“While we did have 13 cases today, it wasn’t a significant jump in percentile,” Zink said adding that the state has around a .9% positive test rate.
Of the 13 new cases, seven were reported in the Kenai Peninsula Borough.
“They do not appear to be connected,” Zink said. “We are still undergoing case investigation in these so it makes us concerned about community spread particularly in the Kenai Peninsula area at this time.”
Currently, under Health Mandate 010, all people arriving in Alaska — outside of critical infrastructure workers — must stay in their home or hotel for 14 days and are only allowed to leave for medical emergencies.
The mandate was signed by the governor on March 11 and violation of the mandate could result in a fine of up to $25,000 as well as possible imprisonment for up to one year.
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