She started coughing on a Sunday, woke with a fever the following Monday, and by that afternoon, Alex Leuzzi was trying to get her doctors to test her for coronavirus.
But her doctors, in a phone call from the Swedish Medical Center clinic in Bellevue, informed Leuzzi “that because my fever wasn’t 100.4 degrees, they weren’t able to test me. I was only at 100 degrees.”
If she had difficulty breathing, her doctors advised, Leuzzi, 36, should go to an emergency room. Otherwise, stay home.
A new analysis from the University of Washington projects that even with strict social distancing from coast to coast, more than 81,000 people in the U.S. — and more than 1,400 in Washington state — could die from COVID-19 by the first of July.
Hospitals and intensive care units across the country are likely to be overwhelmed beginning in the second week of April.
The United States is leading the world in the number of coronavirus cases as of Friday with 85,707 people sick, according to tracking by NBC News — a toll that surpasses the caseload in China where the pandemic ignited in December.
The number of deaths has also risen to 1,268, with New York being the worst hit, accounting for 433 of those killed by COVID-19.
The unprecedented $2 trillion coronavirus rescue package agreed to by Congress and President Donald Trump is expected to potentially unlock billions of dollars in aid for Washington state governments, transit, businesses and hospitals — as well as send direct payments to most adults.
Exactly how and when the money will flow here was not immediately clear as the final package had not yet been voted on as of late Wednesday afternoon and negotiations were ongoing amid partisan disagreements over last-minute changes.
Aides to Gov. Jay Inslee stressed it may take days or weeks to digest details of the 800-plus-page emergency spending measure, the largest in U.S. history.
Whatcom County Executive Satpal Sidhu and Bellingham Mayor Seth Fleetwood discussed local and state efforts to address the new coronavirus pandemic Wednesday in separate phone calls with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.
Their March 25 conversations focused on efforts to flatten the curve of the virus’ spread, the outbreak of coronavirus cases at Shuksan Healthcare Center in Bellingham, and an inevitable increase in positive cases, aides to Sidhu and Fleetwood said.
“We had a constructive conversation and identified important issues which need to be addressed,” Sidhu wrote in an email to The Bellingham Herald. “Gov. Inslee and his team are working very hard, just as we are here in Whatcom County through Unified Command. I appreciate that the governor recognizes the full magnitude of this COVID-19 event, which we see in his ‘Stay Home — Stay Healthy’ proclamation. There is a lot of work ahead, and cooperation across all levels of government is critical.”
More than 133,000 Washington residents filed for jobless benefits last week — a jump of more than ninefold from a week earlier, and the largest spike since the Great Depression–as government efforts to halt the coronavirus outbreak continued to slow the state’s economy.
For the week ending March 21, the state received 133,464, claims for unemployment insurance benefits, up from 14,154 the week before, according to newly released data from the state employment security department.
The two oldest kids in the family were out of the house and studying at college. One was at Western Washington University in Bellingham and one was at the University of Washington in Seattle. Now, they’re back home in Pullman because of COVID-19 concerns with their parents, who are now also teaching from home.
“Combination of fun and interesting going from being half-empty nesters to now being a very full nest,” Chris said.
To combat the novel coronavirus, Gov. Jay Inslee is ordering Washington residents to stay at home, except for crucial activities.
Residents can still leave to buy groceries, seek medical care and go to work at essential businesses, Inslee said in a live televised address Monday evening, and they can still engage in outdoor activities that can be done 6 feet away from others, such as walking and biking.
But the new order requires the closure of nonessential business places and, the governor said, “is enforceable by law,” though broad crackdowns by officers aren’t expected.
“This is a human tragedy on a scale we cannot yet project,” Inslee said of the pandemic. “It’s time to hunker down in order to win this fight.”
Gov. Jay Inslee issued a temporary “stay-at-home” order Monday evening, directing Washingtonians not to leave their homes — unless for crucial activities — in order to slow the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
The new rule will go into effect Monday evening and last through April 6. Non-essential businesses that are still open will have 48 hours to close, and won’t be able to reopen until at least April 8.
Here’s what is and isn’t allowed, according to his new order.
The Lummi Public Health Department announced Monday that two additional Lummi community members have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing Whatcom County’s total cases of the novel coronavirus to 50.
The Lummi said in a release posted to Facebook March 23 that the Nation’s sixth and seventh cases both live in Whatcom County.
“The Public Health team is taking immediate steps to identify close contacts and instruct them to self-quarantine and is prepared to offer testing to those that were exposed and experiencing problems,” the release stated. “The Public Health Department will also work closely with Whatcom County offices to track any affected individuals.”