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
by Kevin Schofield
This week’s “long reads” has just one topic, but two related papers worth reading. Scientists now have a very good idea why older people tend to have more serious cases of COVID-19. And there are some very important implications of this, which we can take action on today.
Continue reading WEEKEND READS: Why Older People Tend to Have More Serious Cases of COVID-19
by Andrew Engelson
In an online press briefing on Friday, Nov. 20, Dr. Jeff Duchin, Health Officer for Public Health — Seattle and King County (PHSKC) reported that cases of COVID-19 and hospitalizations across the county have spiked in the past two weeks. In response, the County’s top health official made an urgent plea to residents to strictly limit social gatherings in advance of Thanksgiving and the holiday season.
Continue reading COVID-19 Cases Surging in King County, With South End Continuing to Be Hardest Hit
by Carolyn Bick
The basic precautionary measures that public health experts have been asking Washingtonians to take throughout the novel coronavirus pandemic are now “the only thing[s] standing between us and disaster,” Tacoma-Pierce County’s Dir. of Public Health Dr. Anthony Chen said in an urgent COVID-19 press briefing on Nov. 10. It’s because people haven’t been taking them that the state is now poised to suffer a sharp — potentially exponential — increase in deaths and hospitalizations.
“I know there are lots of tensions. Everyone’s tired. But this is not the time for argument,” Chen said. We’ve got to … put politics aside, put personalities aside. We’ve got to work on this together.”
Chen and a slew of other public health officials spoke during the briefing, each of them sharing grim statistics. At the core of their concern is the real potential for the state’s healthcare system to become overwhelmed, which would likely force the state to institute more aggressive approaches to slowing down the spread of the disease. These approaches appear to include another lockdown.
Continue reading “We Should Probably All Stop Socializing For the Next Several Weeks”: Health Officials Deliver Grim COVID Data, Warnings
by Carolyn Bick
Starting at noon today, the City of Seattle will accept a new round of applicants for small business stabilization grants, meant to assist small Seattle businesses and economic opportunity nonprofits that have suffered financially as a consequence of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Continue reading City Announces $4 Million Available in Another Round of Small Business Relief Grants
by Elizabeth Turnbull
On Wednesday, Oct. 21, the State of Washington opened applications for a new $40 million fund which provides COVID-19 financial relief to workers whose immigration status has made them previously ineligible for federal stimulus or unemployment benefits.
Aid relief amounts vary from $1,000 for individuals to up to $3,000 per households, and applicants to the fund, which closes on Dec. 6, must be at least 18 years old, significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and ineligible for federal stimulus funding or unemployment benefits due to their immigration status.
Continue reading New COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund Unveiled, Now Open for Applications
by Carolyn Bick
Though officials say this year’s expanded flu vaccination clinic offerings are specifically meant to serve uninsured and underinsured communities of color and people experiencing homelessness, many of whom live in South Seattle, most of the clinics available in South Seattle appear to have relatively few open clinic slots.
Continue reading City Touts Free Vaccination Sites for Uninsured in South Seattle, but Limited Dates Available
by Beau Hebert
Dear The Beauster,
My 7-year old daughter asked me why Donald Trump ignored warnings about the Coronavirus until it was too late. No matter how I try, I cannot think of a suitable answer. Can you help me?
Tongue-Tied Columbia City Mom
Continue reading Dear the Beauster: Why Can’t Our Commander-in-Chief Take COVID Seriously?
by Alexa Peters
Winter blues, low spirits, whatever you want to call it — many Americans become depressed when the winter sets in. This type of mood imbalance, tied intimately to seasonal changes and shorter days, is known in the latest edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) as a major depressive disorder with a seasonal pattern, or more commonly as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
Continue reading For SAD Sufferers, This Winter Could Be Tougher Than Ever
by Mark Van Streefkerk
Citing what he called dangerous inaction by the federal government, Governor Jay Inslee announced new mandatory mask and safety policies for airline employees and travelers on Thursday.
Continue reading Governor Inslee Rolls Out New Statewide Airline Travel Protocol, Responds to Trump on Voting by Mail