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November 10, 2021

COVID-19 Updates from Skagit County

Local COVID-19 Case, Hospital & Vaccine Data

Skagit has a total of 11,963 cases; an increase of 471 new cases since last Wednesday; Hospitalizations are at 678 total (increased by 30 since Wednesday), and 116 deaths (increased by 5).  Skagit currently has a case rate of 735.1 per 100k over the last 14 days and a hospitalization rate of 17.6 COVID patients per 100k over the last seven days.

A total of 189,055 doses have been administered in Skagit County. We are now at 75.1% partially vaccinated amongst our population 12 years and older, and 69.2% fully vaccinated amongst Skagitonians 12 and older.

Why are our numbers so high?

If you’ve been wondering why Skagit County’s case rates are so high and aren’t declining like some other counties in the state, you wouldn’t be alone! We’ve gotten many questions recently about why Skagit seems to be so different compared to our neighboring counties. Unfortunately, the answer isn’t simple—there are several factors at play. Here are some things to consider:

1. Skagit County’s population is different! We are more rural and agricultural than our neighbors to the north and south. Many of our residents do not work from home, meaning that folks are out in the community more. We also have many large households here in Skagit, which allows for more household transmissions.

2. Our vaccination rates are still behind our neighbors—especially King county. Populations with a higher percentage of fully vaccinated residents will see lower case rates. Until we have a higher vaccination percentage, COVID-19 will continue to spread.

3.  Many of our residents are still not taking proper precautions. Masking and limiting gatherings can help to keep disease transmission lower. We are currently seeing the results of Halloween weekend, with a greater number of new cases over the past week or so.

Thankfully, it isn’t all bad. There are some good things at play too when considering our case numbers.

1. Skagit County residents continue to take testing seriously! Folks are great at getting tested when not feeling well or when potentially exposed to the virus. We know this by looking at our positivity rates at the Fairgrounds testing site. Since we reopened in August, we’re averaging about 11.% percent positivity—this means that slightly more than 1 in every 10 people who come to the fairgrounds on a given day are testing positive.

2. Skagit County has low-barrier testing options that many of our neighboring counties do not! This means that more people can access a test when they need it.

3. Public Health, when conducting case investigation, recommends that positive cases have other members in their households tested. Since we know that COVID-19 can spread easily within one’s home, there is a good likelihood that other members of the home will also test positive.

4. Our partners—schools, employers, long-term care facilities—are really great at doing what they need to do. This includes following testing guidance from Public Health and the Washington Department of Health.

Lastly, it is important to note that while our case rates are high right now for us, Skagit never saw the incredible spikes in cases that many of our comparable counties saw earlier this year. Yes, our numbers are high, but our trends have always been much smoother than counties in Eastern Washington, for example.

Pediatric Vaccine at the Fairgrounds

Pfizer COVID-19 Pediatric vaccines are available—
by appointment only—for children 5-11 years old.

  • Parent or Legal Guardian must be present at the time of appointment to provide consent.
  • No other brand (i.e., Janssen or Moderna) is available for pediatric patients at this time.
  • A second pediatric dose of Pfizer vaccine will be required no earlier than 21 days after the first to complete the vaccine series. After first dose, you will receive information on how to make an appointment for your child's second dose.
  • If you have questions about your child receiving the vaccine, please consult with your primary care provider prior to making an appointment.
  • Children ages 12 years and older do not need an appointment when seeking a first or second dose of vaccine.

Appointments are limited at this time. Please check on Mondays at 9:00 AM for newly added appointments or call the Hotline for assistance: 1-833-VAX-HELP (833-829-4357), then press #. To make an appointment for a pediatric vaccine, go to: https://prepmod.doh.wa.gov/.
Search for "Skagit County Public Health" under Name of Location.

Vaccine Boosters Available

Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson boosters are available at the Fairgrounds—by appointment only—for eligible individuals. To make an appointment for a booster, go to: https://prepmod.doh.wa.gov/. Search for "Skagit County Public Health" under Name of Location.

Holiday Operational Changes at the Fairgrounds

As a reminder, the Skagit County Fairgrounds Testing and Vaccine Site will be closed on specific holidays during the months of November and December. The site will be closed on the following dates:

  • Thursday, November 11th (Veteran’s Day)
  • Thursday, November 25th (Thanksgiving)
  • Friday, November 26th (Thanksgiving)
  • Friday, December 24th (Christmas Eve)
  • Friday, December 31st (New Year's Day)

In lieu of these dates, the site will be open on the following days from 3pm to 7pm:

  • Wednesday, November 10th
  • Wednesday November 24th
  • Wednesday, December 22nd
  • Wednesday, December 29th

For more information about the site, go to: www.skagitcounty.net/coronavirus or call (360) 416-1500.