The first shipment of the third COVID-19 vaccine to secure emergency-use approval from the federal government arrived in Washington state this week.
The shipment came only days after President Joe Biden announced there could be enough vaccine for all adults in the United States by the end of May.
Whatcom County had 33 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported on the Washington State Department of Health’s coronavirus dashboard on Tuesday, March 2, but no related deaths were reported.
Overall, Whatcom County has seen 6,734 confirmed cases and 84 related deaths during the pandemic, according to state data as of 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, March 3. An additional 152 probable cases — a decrease of two from Wednesday’s report — have been reported in Whatcom County during the pandemic, resulting from positive antigen tests not confirmed by a molecular test.
More people than originally planned will be offered the opportunity to get vaccinated in the next step of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout, Gov. Jay Inslee announced Thursday afternoon.
Inslee said he expects the state to move to the expanded next tier March 22, assuming supply keeps ramping up.
Veterans of the Puget Sound who are enrolled in the VA system — no matter age, health or living situation — can now get a COVID-19 shot at VA Puget Sound Health Care Systems facilities.
The health care system is offering the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to any veteran who is already enrolled with in the VA health care system. Shots will be available at the American Lake and Seattle medical centers, as well as the Silverdale and Mount Vernon clinics.
Veterans who aren’t enrolled can check their eligibility on the VA website.
When will children be able to get COVID-19 vaccines?
It depends on the child’s age, but some teenagers could be rolling up their sleeves before too long.
The Pfizer vaccine already is cleared for use starting at age 16. That means some high schoolers could get in line for those shots whenever they become eligible in their area, either because of a medical condition or once availability opens up.
Pfizer and Moderna both have completed enrollment for studies of children ages 12 and older, and expect to release the data over the summer. If regulators clear the results, younger teens likewise could start getting vaccinated once supply allows. The Moderna vaccine is currently cleared for people 18 and older.
With 50 million Americans immunized against the coronavirus, and millions more joining the ranks every day, the urgent question on many minds is: When can I throw away my mask?
It’s a deeper question than it seems — about a return to normalcy, about how soon vaccinated Americans can hug loved ones, get together with friends, and go to concerts, shopping malls and restaurants without feeling threatened by the coronavirus.
When vaccinated people can ditch the masks in public spaces will depend on how quickly the rates of disease drop and what percentage of people remain unvaccinated in the surrounding community.
Why? Scientists do not know whether vaccinated people spread the virus to those who are unvaccinated. While all of the COVID-19 vaccines are spectacularly good at shielding people from severe illness and death, the research is unclear on exactly how well they stop the virus from taking root in an immunized person’s nose and then spreading to others.
Whatcom County saw another COVID-related death on the same day the state surpassed 5,000 deaths during the pandemic, according to the Washington State Department of Health’s coronavirus dashboard on Wednesday, March 3. Whatcom also had 35 new confirmed COVID-19 cases reported Wednesday.
Overall, Whatcom County has seen 6,701 confirmed cases and 84 related deaths during the pandemic, according to state data as of 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, March 2, meaning 1.2% of all COVID cases in Whatcom County have been linked to a death.
Concern about new coronavirus variants has grown quickly in recent months.
First, scientists in the United Kingdom spotted a more contagious coronavirus strain that spread like wildfire through the London area. Then, researchers in South Africa spotted one that appears to evade the immune system. Next, another variant was flagged in Brazil because it looked like it could infect people who had already been infected once before.
And now there has been a flurry of reports about homegrown variants in the United States. What's going on? How worried do we really need to be about them?
Twenty new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Whatcom County were reported on the Washington State Department of Health’s coronavirus dashboard on Tuesday, March 2, but no related deaths were reported.
Overall, Whatcom County has seen 6,666 confirmed cases and 83 related deaths during the pandemic, according to state data as of 11:59 p.m. Monday, March 1, meaning 1.2% of all COVID cases in Whatcom County have been linked to a death.
Educators and childcare workers in Washington state are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, Gov. Jay Inslee announced Tuesday after President Joe Biden directed states to prioritize those workers.
President Biden on Tuesday directed states to add preK-12 educators and staff and licensed childcare workers as a currently eligible group.