Tag Archives: COVID-19 Testing

Mask Mandates, School Openings, Sports, and Other Questions About COVID-19

by Sally James


The COVID-19 delta variant is behind the latest surge of coronavirus cases, prompting new mask mandates, and raising a lot of new questions, including about the safety of unvaccinated school children and playing sports. 

This week we look at some new questions and rely on County and State health officials for the latest guidance.

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NEWS GLEAMS: Vaccine Webinar, SE Seattle Schools’ Move-a-Thon, Metro’s Trailhead Direct

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle! 


COVID-19 vaccine vial at a Seattle pop-up vaccination clinic. Photo by Alex Garland.

COVID-19 Webinar & Testing Locations

Six Months After the COVID Vaccine Webinar, May 27 With full reopening after the COVID-19 pandemic just weeks away, a group of experts will discuss the State’s next steps and how Washington state can return to a medical world better and more equitable than the old normal. 

From the event sponsor: “On May 27 from 5 to 6 p.m., Washington medical experts will convene for a free webinar, Six Months with a COVID Vaccine: Where we started and what we know now. Hosted by the Washington State Department of Health, the event will feature a panel discussion with: 

  • Dr. Ben Danielson, University of Washington School of Medicine
  • Dr. Gretchen LaSalle, American Academy of Family Physicians Vaccine Science Fellow
  • Dr. Larry Corey, Fred Hutch President and Director Emeritus

“The experts will share an update on state vaccination rates, their learnings from the last six months and their outlook for what WA residents can expect moving forward.
More information on the webinar can be found here. This event will offer live Spanish and ASL interpretation.”

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: Vaccine Webinar, SE Seattle Schools’ Move-a-Thon, Metro’s Trailhead Direct

NEWS GLEAMS: COVID Spike, Byrd Barr Changes, Happy B-Day to RAR!, and More

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle! 


Photo by Alex Garland.

Spike in COVID Cases, Testing, and the Latest in Vaccines

COVID Spike Prompts Update to Rainier Beach COVID Testing & Vaccine Hub  Mayor Jenny Durkan announced last week that the City’s Rainier Beach and West Seattle COVID testing hubs — which recently began offering vaccines in addition to testing — would transition to vaccine-only hubs in the middle of this week, but data from Public Health — Seattle & King County revealed a spike in COVID cases in the county over the last two weeks. As a result, COVID testing at these sites will now be extended, says the City.

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: COVID Spike, Byrd Barr Changes, Happy B-Day to RAR!, and More

Elders of Color Face Major Hurdles Getting COVID Vaccine

by Carolyn Bick


Every day, Lynda Greene and her fellow staffers at the SouthEast Seattle Senior Center field about 30–45 phone calls from community elders trying to schedule an appointment to get vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.

Most of these callers are crying. Most of them are Black.

Continue reading Elders of Color Face Major Hurdles Getting COVID Vaccine

One Year After First COVID-19 Outbreak, County Health Officials Cautiously Optimistic

by Andrew Engelson


Nearly one year after the first outbreak of COVID-19 in King County and the nation, public health officials and King County Executive Dow Constantine say they are cautiously optimistic about the spread of the virus. Effective prevention measures combined with slow but steadily increasing vaccinations have the potential to “put the pandemic in the rear view mirror,” said Public Health Officer Dr. Jeffrey Duchin in an online press briefing on Friday. But concerns remain, including the discovery of two new SARS-CoV-2 strains in the county, and pressure among those tiring of restrictions to let up on prevention strategies such as masking and limits on gatherings.In addition, inequitable access to vaccines remains a concern.

Continue reading One Year After First COVID-19 Outbreak, County Health Officials Cautiously Optimistic

South End Public School Staff to District: Don’t Reopen Without Vaccines

by the Staff of Dearborn Park International School


In response to the recent unilateral announcement by Seattle Public Schools (SPS) that they intend to reopen pre-K/kindergarten/first grade for in-person instruction beginning in March, the staff of Dearborn Park International Elementary School came together for a series of conversations to share our thoughts and concerns about this proposal. The conversations involved the majority of the staff — dozens of staff members over multiple days and included classroom teachers from every grade as well as specialists, instructional assistants, secretaries, and other staff.

We were especially concerned that SPS has not been clear in their communications to families and staff. The decision to reopen schools is not yet official and will have to be negotiated with the Seattle Education Association (SEA) first — there currently is no actual plan in place that would meet the needs of the impacted schools.

Continue reading South End Public School Staff to District: Don’t Reopen Without Vaccines

State Expects First Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine By Next Week, But Most Washingtonians Won’t Get Vaccine Until Mid-2021

by Carolyn Bick


Though roughly 62,000 first doses of a vaccine to prevent COVID-19 will be available starting next week, it will only be available for highest risk healthcare workers, Department of Health officials said in a press briefing on Dec. 9. And even though health officials expect the state to get a total of 400,000 combined doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine — if Moderna’s vaccine gets emergency authorization approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration — this number only represents the first dose of the vaccine, which requires two doses to be effective.

The state projects that the first round of doses will be administered by mid-January, Department of Health (DOH) Acting Assistant Secretary Michele Roberts said. She said that this includes highest risk healthcare workers and first responders, as well as long-term care facility residents and staff. She said that these first doses will be matched with the same number of second doses for these same people.

Continue reading State Expects First Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine By Next Week, But Most Washingtonians Won’t Get Vaccine Until Mid-2021

State Officials Encourage Use of New COVID App, Share Good Vaccine News

by Carolyn Bick


As the state braces for the potential infection fallout of those who chose to gather for Thanksgiving, Gov. Jay Inslee in a Nov. 30 press conference encouraged Washingtonians to download or activate a new app that anonymously alerts users if they have been in close contact with someone infected with COVID-19. He also shared that the first shipments of a vaccine will be available by mid-December, with more on the way.

Continue reading State Officials Encourage Use of New COVID App, Share Good Vaccine News

New Test Site to Open in Highline, As Cases in South King County Skyrocket

by Carolyn Bick


A new, free walk-up COVID-19 testing site will open in South King County’s Highline College, Public Health – Seattle & King County announced in a press release on Nov. 19.

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Black Brilliance Project Outlines Ambitious Public Safety Agenda That Includes $1B Land Acquisition Fund

by Paul Kiefer

(This article previously appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


As the Seattle City Council wrapped up their 2021 budget deliberations, representatives from King County Equity Now’s (KCEN) Black Brilliance research project held a press conference on Monday afternoon to announce an ambitious slate of potential City investments and social programming aimed at replacing police and improving community safety in Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities.

The Black Brilliance Project, which KCEN announced in September, encompasses the preliminary research for next year’s proposed public safety-oriented participatory budgeting process. The project will be funded through a $3 million grant to The Freedom Project, which will subcontract with KCEN; the City has not yet finalized and published the contract.

Continue reading Black Brilliance Project Outlines Ambitious Public Safety Agenda That Includes $1B Land Acquisition Fund