Fifth nonresident seafood worker tests positive for coronavirus in Alaska

Electron scanning microscope image of SARS-CoV-2 in blue (Image from NIAID)

A seafood worker has tested positive for the coronavirus. It’s the fifth nonresident, seafood worker to test positive in Alaska, according to the state Department of Health and Social Services. 

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In a news release, the department said the worker was still in quarantine in Anchorage. Under new state guidelines released Friday, people traveling to Alaska to work in a seafood processing plant have several options for quarantining, including staying in larger cities, such as Anchorage or Juneau, for two weeks prior to departing to their destination communities.

The new case is the 10th nonresident to test positive for the virus in Alaska.

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On Sunday, the state also announced the 11th positive case of the coronavirus among staff at Juneau’s Lemon Creek Correctional Center. Last week, the state Department of Corrections said all inmates and staff would be tested for the virus. The health department said in Sunday’s new release that the remainder of those results will be back “soon.”

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The number of Alaskans who have tested positive for the coronavirus increased by four by Sunday. Two of those cases were from Anchorage, one was the Lemon Creek staff member in Juneau and the fourth was from Homer. That brings the total case count among Alaskans to 396, with 344 recoveries so far.

Correction: This story previously used older guidance about where and how fisheries workers can quarantine. It has been corrected to clarify that under guidance released by the state on Friday, nonresident fisheries workers at onshore processing plants may conduct a mid-travel quarantine in either Anchorage or Juneau prior to departing for their destination communities.