Public Health news and blog
More locations for COVID-19 testing at no cost available throughout King County
To prevent COVID-19 from spreading to family, friends, and the community, Public Health – Seattle & King County recommends that anyone with COVID-19 symptoms or who has been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 be tested right away.
Now available: Local data on unemployment, healthcare, housing and other measures during COVID-19 pandemic
New data tools now available provide information on the social, health and economic impacts during COVID-19.
Face covering directive goes into effect today: Prevent spreading COVID-19 when unable to maintain 6 feet of distance
A health directive to wear face coverings in public goes into effect today. Wear a face covering at any indoor or outdoor public space where you may be within 6 feet of someone who does not live with you.
Protecting rights of people with disabilities as face-covering directive goes into effect Monday
The directive to wear face coverings while in public goes into effect May 18 to help slow the spread of COVID-19. King County asks people to be mindful that it is not recommended for all community members to wear a face covering – including some people with disabilities.
Testing recommended for anyone with mild COVID-19 symptoms; decreased cases in long-term care facilities shows importance of aggressive response
Anyone with mild symptoms of COVID-19 should get tested as soon as possible to reduce its spread through the community – and testing locations are available throughout King County. Also, lower numbers of COVID-19 cases in long-term care facilities point to the importance of public health measures in reducing the spread of the virus in these settings.
Health Officer directs residents to use face coverings in indoor public settings, outdoors where social distancing is difficult
Public Health – Seattle & King County Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchin, along with King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan, announced a new Health Officer Directive strongly urging face coverings in all indoor public places including grocery stores and other businesses, as well as outside settings where maintaining six feet of social distancing is difficult. This directive will go into effect May 18, 2020.
Latest report shows COVID-19 transmission rate could be rising in King County; social distancing remains key
Latest data shows the COVID-19 transmission rate could be rising across King County and the rest of western Washington after previous indications the transmission rate had fallen below a critical threshold.
Tips for staying safe outdoors as more recreation lands reopen
More public lands are reopening for limited use following closures to slow the spread of COVID-19. King County is offering guidelines for safely enjoying parks, trails, and natural areas.
Two reports show COVID-19 transmission has slowed, while most people still susceptible
Two new reports provide further confirmation that social distancing measures have reduced transmission of COVID-19 in King County.
New analysis shows pronounced racial inequities among COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths
Updated data shows that in King County, COVID-19 is disproportionally impacting communities of color. There is more to do collectively to support all communities with access to testing, information and social supports to address inequities in health outcomes.
Public encouraged to watch for wider range of symptoms for COVID-19
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has added to its list of symptoms for COVID-19. Also, as more farmers markets open for the spring, customers are encouraged to practice important safety measures.
Report: COVID-19 transmission decline slowing, rapid rise in cases at risk without continued social distancing
A new report from the Institute for Disease Modeling shows the decrease in COVID-19 transmission in King County has slowed. Continued social distancing, and additional disease control measures, are necessary to avoid a rebound in new cases that could overwhelm the healthcare system.
Testing at jail facility; free child care for first responders and essential workers; supplemental budget to continue COVID-19 response and recovery
Public Health – Seattle & King County will provide free testing to staff at the Maleng Regional Justice Center after six staff reported testing positive for COVID-19. Also, first responders and essential workers in King County can access free child care through a King County program to help parents working on the front lines of the COVID-19 response.
Rapid response in homeless shelters can help prevent spread of COVID-19; how to protect older adults at home; latest on antibody testing
New research details how a rapid response in homeless shelters by public health experts can help protect shelter clients and staff from COVID-19. Also, read about tips for keeping multi-generational families healthy at home.
COVID-19 cases among people living homeless rising; death at Kent isolation and quarantine facility
Public Health – Seattle & King County announces 112 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among people living homeless or working in homeless services sites. This includes two confirmed deaths. In addition, there was a death of a resident at King County’s Kent isolation and quarantine facility, which will be investigated by the King County Medical Examiner's Office.
New at-home testing effort improves outbreak data; additional testing available for first responders, health care workers; multilingual COVID-19 videos available
New cases of COVID-19 in King County have been identified that might have gone undetected, thanks to volunteer participants who collected their own sample at home and sent to a lab for testing. In additional news, testing has been made available for symptomatic first responders and health care workers who cannot access testing through their health care provider or occupational health services. Educational videos about COVID-19 now available in multiple languages.
Report: Promising results of social distancing to slow spread of COVID-19; Health officials stress importance of continued measures
New research suggests the spread of COVID-19 illness is slowing down thanks to the collective actions of residents in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties, who are broadly following the "stay home" message.
Research published on social distancing and mobility; local sports stars join Public Health – Seattle & King County’s Stand Together. Stay Apart. campaign; new recovery sites open
New research shows decreases in mobility associated with social distancing policies. Local sports stars join Public Health – Seattle & King County’s Stand Together. Stay Apart. campaign to promote the importance of social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19. Two new COVID-19 recovery sites are now open.
Risks of ending social distancing too early; Public Health – Seattle & King County announces 145 new cases and 7 deaths reported for April 11, 2020
While some initial studies suggest social distancing measures are slowing the spread of COVID-19 in King County, Public Health cautions that relaxing our social distancing strategy too soon could overwhelm the healthcare system. In addition, Public Health reported 145 new cases, bringing the official case count in King County to 4,262, and 7 new deaths, bringing the total of COVID-19 deaths in King County to 284.
Preliminary data from Public Health—Seattle & King County shows COVID-19 impacting all races and ethnicities, as 231 new cases and 19 deaths reported for April 10, 2020
Preliminary data shows COVID-19 impacting all races and ethnicities. In addition, Public Health—Seattle & King County reported 231 new cases, bringing the official case count in King County to 4,117, and 19 new deaths, bringing the total of COVID-19 deaths in King County to 277.