Just one week until Thanksgiving, the COVID-19 pandemic shows no signs of slowing in Spokane.
The Spokane Regional Health District reported 414 new cases of the virus on Thursday, marking the second time in a week that the daily rates topped 400. It’s the second-highest daily rate during the pandemic, after the health district reported 422 new cases on Nov. 14.
There are currently 90 county residents hospitalized. Four more people have died from the virus, bringing the county total to 236 deaths.
The county now has had 13,839 cases, with 65.5% of those people recovered.
Daily rates have remained high in Spokane through November, often averaging more than 200 cases per day. COVID-19 activity throughout Washington is increasing.
Health officials across the country are urging people not to gather during Thanksgiving . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a statement Thursday urging against Thanksgiving travel and gathering.
“Postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others this year,” the statement read.
The CDC recommended Thanksgiving activities other than a large gathering, including a virtual meal, watching television or online shopping.
The statement also urged those who do travel to wear a mask, social distance, wash hands and get a flu shot. If gathering with those outside your household on Thanksgiving, the CDC recommends wearing a mask and staying at least 6 feet from others.
Washington health officials had similar advice on Wednesday, with Secretary of Health Dr. John Wiesman calling this the “most important time we’ve had so far in this nine or 10 months of this pandemic.”
Gov. Jay Inslee asked Washington residents to voluntarily stop out-of-state travel. Those who do travel should self-quarantine for 14 days after.
Inslee also implemented new restrictions on businesses, restaurants and social gatherings, sparking backlash from the hospitality industry. The new restrictions will last until at least Dec. 14, at which point health officials will re-evaluate what is needed to slow the spread.
Laurel Demkovich's reporting for The Spokesman-Review is funded in part by Report for America and by members of the Spokane community. This story can be republished by other organizations for free under a Creative Commons license. For more information on this, please contact our newspaper’s managing editor.
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