Covid vaccine

Screenshot from FDA website

Hospital officials in Washington say Covid patients and their families are asking doctors to prescribe the deworming drug ivermectin as part of their treatment regimens. The drug isn’t recommended by federal or state health authorities for Covid, but patients are asking that it be administered anyway.

Vaccine Deadline Nears For WA State Employees

Sep 13, 2021
Courtesy of Cascade Medical Center

Most Washington state employees face a deadline next month to receive the Covid vaccination they’ll need to keep their jobs. But Monday was an important day for some to stay on track in their quest to reach that goal.

Courtesy of the Northeast Tri-County Health District

Hospitalizations and new COVID-19 cases in eastern Washington and north Idaho are soaring – and healthcare providers fear that if this trend continues, there will soon be a shortage of both beds and staff to treat dangerously ill patients from both rural and urban communities.

Northeast Tri County Health Officer Sam Artzis said the counties he serves, Stevens, Ferry and Pend Oreille, have not only approached the high tide mark from last December for hospitalization and new cases.

Rebecca White/SPR

Healthcare providers are raising the alarm as the Inland Northwest hits its highest hospitalization level since the start of the pandemic.

Massive Spike In COVID-19 Expected In Idaho This Fall

Aug 17, 2021
Courtesy of State of Idaho

Idaho health officials are bracing for increased Covid cases by fall.

They say the numbers will be as bad, or worse as previous surges.

Quazoo.com

Fairchild Air Force Base is preparing for a Department of Defense mandate requiring service members to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

TVW

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Monday that Washington State is mandating vaccination for state employees and contractors.

The requirement for state workers to get vaccinations comes as a spike in new COVID-19 infections fueled by the Delta variant hits the state, increasing the burden on hospitals.

Rebecca White/SPR

The Spokane Regional Health District is reporting that 92.7% of the region’s ICU beds are full.

About 7.8% of those ICU beds are confirmed COVID-19 cases, according to an email from the health district Wednesday.

That comes the same day the district reported more than 270 new cases of COVID-19 and 85 hospitalizations.

Office of the Governor

Idaho Governor Brad Little made an appeal Tuesday to Idaho residents to get vaccinated against the coronavirus.

His request comes during a dramatic increase in positive cases.

Rebecca White/SPR

The Center for Disease Control is now recommending everyone, vaccinated or not, wear masks while indoors due to an increase in infections driven by the Delta variant of the coronavirus.

Dr. Francisco Velazquez, the Spokane Regional Health District’s interim health officer, said the Delta, as well as other variants, have been detected in Spokane County.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

After loosening masking recommendations for vaccinated people, the CDC is now urging people in areas with high COVID-19 case rates to put on a face mask when indoors.

TVW

A college student in Spokane is one of a handful of vaccinated people across the state to win a $250,000 prize for getting a shot.

In a news conference Thursday, the winner, only identified by the Governor’s Office as Marissa P, addressed the public alongside Governor Jay Inslee.

“Well like he said, my names Marissa, I’m from Spokane, I’m pre-nursing and I’m so honored to be here, I feel so blessed to be here. I just want to say stay healthy, stay safe and go get vaccinated.”

Vaccine shot
Flickr / US Army Corps of Engineers

As Washington state’s vaccination rate approaches 70%, many more rural counties are lagging behind. Health officials are hoping trusted relationships with physicians will close that gap.

Governors Inslee, Little Say Idaho And Washington Nearing COVID-19 Goals

Jun 10, 2021
TVW

More than two-thirds of Washington residents 16 and older have had at least their first COVID shots. That puts the state just four percentage points away from 70%, the goal Governor Jay Inslee established to reopen the state before June 30.

Flikr Creative Commons

Cannabis stores in Washington can now offer in store vaccines, with a complimentary joint.

According to a Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board news release, the “Joint for Jab” program goes from Monday until July 12. People getting a first or second vaccine dose at a vaccine clinic in a pot shop will be eligible for one pre-rolled joint.

The program is only for people 21 or older, and does not include any other cannabis products.

Vaccine Clinics Available at Spokane Fire Stations

Jun 2, 2021
Rebecca White/SPR

Spokane residents can now get vaccinated at fire stations in their own neighbohoods. 

At the first vaccine clinic at a fire staion in northeast Spokane, Mayor Nadine Woodward said she hopes bringing shots directly to the communiy will make getting vaccinated easier, and bring Spokane one step closer to re-opening.

"We want to continue to push the importance of vaccines in our community. Spokane County is at 50% initial vaccination. We need to get to that 70% statewide in order to fully open June 30."

Doug Nadvornick/SPR

Washington’s Liquor and Cannabis Board has announced a new step aimed at helping the hospitality industry while also promoting Covid vaccinations.

The board announced on Monday that it’s allowing restaurants and bars the option of serving one no-cost alcoholic drink on-site to customers if those customers can prove they’ve received a Covid vaccination.

Rebecca White/SPR

Hundreds of students, the youngest of which just became eligible this week, were vaccinated Friday at the Spokane Public Schools Pfizer immunization clinic.

Spokane Transit is offering free rides to people who need help getting to a Covid vaccination appointment.

The agency says, from now until June 12, it will offer door-to-door rides as an incentive with a second free ride a few weeks later if the vaccine recipient receives a dose of Pfizer or Moderna.

People who take advantage of this will ride on S-T-A’s paratransit vans. The agency says up to three passengers will be aboard, sitting at least six feet apart. Passengers must wear masks while onboard.

Health Officials Encourage Youth To Get Vaccinated

May 12, 2021
Spokane Regional Health District

As authorization for children over 12 to get vaccinated against the coronavirus nears, health officials urge families to consider getting the vaccine, and for currently eligible 16 and 17-year-olds who are eligible to get vaccinated now.

 

Dr. Gretchen LaSalle, a family physician with Multi-Care said during a Health District briefing Wednesday, that children usually have milder cases of COVID, but that can still lead to long-term impacts.

 

Flickr Creative Commons

The Food and Drug Administration says 12-to-15-year-olds are now eligible to receive Pfizer’s Covid vaccine.

For parents such as Cassie Sauer [sour], the president of the Washington State Hospital Association, the decision about having their children vaccinated is an easy one.

Rebecca White/SPR

Spokane County's interim health officer says the county will likely revert back to more restrictions as both coronavirus cases and hospitalizations continue to rise.

Spokane County has 299 cases and 8.6 hospitalizations per 100,000 people, significantly above the requirements to stay in the state’s current phase of re-opening.

Many NW Providers Bring Back J&J Vaccine As An Option

Apr 27, 2021
Doug Nadvornick/SPR

Several public health agencies in Washington and Idaho say they are going back to administering the Johnson and Johnson Covid vaccine after getting the go-ahead from the Centers for Disease Control.

TVW

As Washington State braces for a fourth wave of coronavirus and spread from a more infectious variant, Governor Jay Inslee is urging residents to continue to follow health rules, and take the vaccine.

Inslee noted that half of virus cases now are more infectious variants of COVID-19.

“This is bad news for us because these are more transmittable. Each person with the same disease can transmit it more easily. The science is highly suggestive that this is a significant reason the virus is now increasing in our state.”

Washington Covid Vaccine Finder

For the last few months, Washington has limited who has access to coronavirus vaccines. But those limits go away on Thursday. All adults and 16- and 17-year-olds will be eligible to apply for vaccination appointments.

Rebecca White/SPR

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Friday that counties now must fail in two metrics to be moved back a phase in their reopening – and some counties may have if the guidance had stayed the same.

Rebecca White/SPR

Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced Friday that counties now must fail in two metrics to be moved back a phase in their reopening. The governor says the state won't act unless counties have both a high hospitalization and case rate.

Previously, a county could be forced to regress to more restrictions if they had more than 200 cases per 100,000 people. Now they also must have more than five hospitalizations per 100,000 cases for the state to regress a county to a more restrictive phase.

Rebecca White/SPR

Health officials are concerned about rising COVID-19 cases, especially in younger people, that could put the county of compliance with the governor’s re-opening metrics.

To stay in Phase 3 of the governor’s re-opening plan, Spokane County must have less than 200 cases per 100,000 people. As of Wednesday, the county had 183 cases per 100,000. Spokane County Interim Health Officer Dr. Francisco Velázquez said that was concerning.

Courtesy of CHAS Health

CHAS Health is opening up a new mass vaccination clinic for anyone eligible to get a vaccine Wednesday at the Spokane Community College Campus.

Vaccinations are only available to those who qualify under the current state guidelines, which is people over the age of 60, people over 16 with some medical conditions. People who work in some fields such as agriculture or healthcare are also eligible now. Starting April 15, anyone over 16 will be able to get a vaccine there.

Flickr Creative Commons

When Washington opens Covid vaccinations to anyone older than 16 on April 15, some believe that will lead to a rush of new people that will overwhelm the state’s Covid vaccine application system. The Department of Health's Michele Roberts isn’t so sure.

Pages