Spokane County saw 26 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Independence Day, after the Spokane Regional Health District reported 59 new cases Friday.
The total number of confirmed cases in the county has more than doubled since June 4, when the county had recorded 651 COVID-19 cases. As of the Fourth of July, the county total has climbed to 1,570.
As of Friday, 18 county residents were hospitalized for the virus. No new hospitalizations were reported on Saturday. The county has seen 132 total hospitalizations since the epidemic began.
People aged 20 to 29 made up the largest percentage of those who have tested positive as of Thursday, followed by people aged 30 to 39. Overall, people aged 20 to 49 made up over 60% of confirmed cases, while people aged 60 to 99 made up about 12% of cases.
White people made up about 42% of confirmed cases as of Thursday, while Pacific Islanders made up 33% , which is about 82 times the county’s Pacific Islander population rate of .04%.
Marshalleese people make up most of those cases in Pacific Islanders. After World War II, the United States commandeered several islands in the Republic of the Marshall Islands to use for nuclear testing and, over a 12-year period, the U.S. government conducted 67 nuclear tests there. The radioactive fallout and radiation left behind made certain islands uninhabitable, and the health effects and other devastating consequences are still impacting Marshallese people.
To prevent further spread of the virus, Spokane skipped a traditional Independence Day fireworks show this year. Instead, organizers planned shows at four locations, where empty parking lots allowed for drive-in viewing.
The drive-in shows followed the same guidelines laid out for drive-in theaters under Phase 2. Cars weren’t allowed in parking areas until 9 p.m. to discourage preshow gatherings. There were designated parking spots with at least 10 feet of space between vehicles.
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