Situation Report #145

January 12th, 2021 - Posted in Alerts, Uncategorized

The Vashon Emergency Operations Center produces this briefing for our emergency workers and for the community. The situation report is published Tuesday and Friday and includes information on Vashon community response actions and support.

You can read the full text of today’s report as a PDF and access older ones at:

Current Virus Statistics: 

Vashon Island COVID-19 Case Count as of 1/12/21:*
93 confirmed positive cases, 1 new case since last Situation Report on Friday
Date of last positive test: January 10
1 new positives in past 7 days and 6 positives in the past 14 days  
3 people have been hospitalized. Date of last hospitalization: December 28
1 Vashon deaths on King County dashboard, last death reported 1/1/21, (1 Vashon death not yet posted)

King County COVID-19 Case Count as of 1/12/21:*
69,522 confirmed positive cases, 2,454 new since last Situation Report on Friday
1,148 deaths, 10 new since last Situation Report on Friday

Washington State COVID-19 Case Count as of 1/10/21:*
276,686 confirmed positive cases, 8,079 new since last Situation Report on Friday
3,699 deaths, 0 since last Situation Report on Friday

Data Lag: A data reporting lag continues on the official dashboard of pandemic statistics maintained by Public Health — Seattle & King County (PHSKC). For example, although there have been two COVID-related deaths of Vashon residents to date, the PHSKC dashboard still shows only one death.

*Note 1:  The statistics above are from the Public Health – Seattle & King County dashboard as of the date listed. Numbers may not be complete, as data processing lags and the actual number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths may not yet match the dashboard.

Note 2: Federal law prohibits Public Health – Seattle & King County (PHSKC) from releasing the names of patients (HIPAA Act). For consistency of day-to-day data reporting for Vashon, the EOC uses only the Zip code data from the Public Health – Seattle & King County dashboard

Health Tips:

Still time to get seasonal flu vaccinations.  Flu season is still with us, and as the cold/wet weather continues, a flu vaccination will reduce your risk of experiencing flu symptoms.  People considering vaccinations such as seasonal flu, shingles, etc. should hurry to get them now so they can get their COVID-19 vaccination when available, since no other vaccines should be taken within two weeks before and after the COVID-19 vaccination. Flu vaccinations are available at most providers. In addition, arrangements have been made for VashonBePrepared to cover the cost of flu vaccinations for residents without insurance, or whose insurance is not accepted at Vashon Pharmacy. For more information on vaccination providers, go to our English/Spanish Flu Vaccine Provider Directory at:  

American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) has provided antidote accurate information in response to some common myths about the COVID-19 vaccine. For example, while getting vaccinated is critical, it is equally important to continue wearing masks and social distancing. The AARP article explains how vaccines take time to provide protection and, as we mentioned in our last report, you may still be able to transmit the virus after vaccination. Visit:

Vashon Vaccine Availability: 

Very limited COVID-19 vaccine has been available for Vashon residents in these early days of distribution. Even so, dozens of Phase 1a vaccinations have been administered on Vashon so far.

People eligible during Phase 1a of the vaccination rollout include frontline health care workers as well as care facility residents and staff. Vashon Community Care will hold its second of three vaccination sessions tomorrow for staff and residents, according to Executive Director Wendy Kleppe. The Sea Mar clinic at Sunrise Ridge has also been providing vaccinations for Vashon’s frontline healthcare workers (see below).

Today’s announcement by the federal government that vaccine availability will be expanded and eligibility age lowered to 65 should help improve local availability within the next few weeks. The state Department of Health will likely first need to issue new guidelines on sequencing for vaccine release after the agency studies today’s federal announcement. There’s more information on today’s announcement elsewhere in this Situation Report.

It’s important to note that nearly all providers will require a pre-screening process and an appointment before providing COVID-19 vaccination. Screening includes details such as age and occupation to check for eligibility based on state guidelines. Also, no vaccinations will be administered to anyone who has had or plans to have any other type of vaccination, such as seasonal flu vaccination, two weeks before or after the COVID-19 vaccination. People who have not yet had seasonal flu vaccination should do that now, in order to be ready for COVID-19 vaccination.

Vashon Vaccine Availability Survey #4:
There will be three primary providers of vaccinations here on Vashon. They are Sea Mar clinic, Vashon Pharmacy, and Vashon Natural Medicine. In addition, mainland providers such as Kaiser, Multicare, Polyclinic, and CHI Franciscan are beginning to offer vaccinations according to the state Department of Health rollout schedule. Public Health — Seattle & King County says it will be opening two vaccination sites in south King County in early February. Pharmacy chains such as CVS, Safeway Pharmacy, Walgreens and others are ramping up and promise vaccination availability soon.
Sea Mar Clinic at Sunrise Ridge: Sea Mar offered vaccination to other Phase 1a providers such as clinicians, first responders, the Medical Reserve Corps testing site volunteers, dentists etc. and will continue offering vaccinations under the Phase 1A guidelines from the state Department of Health. So far, Sea Mar has been administering its first 100 COVID-19 vaccine doses to Phase 1a providers.
Vashon Natural Medicine: Clinic owner Kelly Wright reports they have not yet received a supply of vaccine. The clinic has plans to notify its patients directly based on the guidelines for eligibility prescribed for the various phases by the state Department of Health.
Vashon Pharmacy: Owner Tyler Young has been working intensively on a high volume drive-through clinic that will be located in the parking areas in back of his store. The EOC Team Logistics Section, Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) have been providing planning and other support, and will help operate the site by providing traffic control, site coordination, and post-injection medical observation. Planning is well along with a test run-through (with no vaccine), tentatively scheduled for later this week. Initial vaccine supplies will be minimal and the date of arrival is not yet known. When vaccine doses arrive at the Pharmacy, the site will ramp up slowly with a “soft open” at low volume to make sure all the procedures work well and safely, and that Pharmacy staff and volunteers are fully trained.  The site may be able to vaccinate as many as 150 people per day when a vaccine is available in sufficient quantity.

Local COVID Activity:

It’s important to understand that a COVID-19 test is not a magic shield against infection.  “The majority of our recent Vashon cases have involved people who got COVID from relatives who had been tested before a family visit”, according to Dr. Jim Bristow, lead physician for the Medical Reserve Corps testing site.  “People are, of course, very pleased when they get a negative COVID test.  But many mistakenly believe the test means they have some sort of “get out of jail free” card. They feel fine and they fool themselves into thinking it’s safe to be around family they haven’t seen in months.  As a result, people are putting themselves, their family and others in danger.”  Dr. Bristow points out that infection can begin, with or without symptoms, up to two weeks after exposure to someone with COVID. As a result the only way to be sure you are safe before seeing others outside of your household is a 14-day quarantine. Until large numbers of people are vaccinated, the best way to stay safe is wearing a mask, handwashing, avoiding gatherings outside of your household and social distancing when you must be around others.

New Developments since Last Report:

Creating Strength, the mental health and resilience campaign, will launch on January 14th.  The nine-week campaign of mental health communications and videos is produced by VashonBePrepared’s Community Care Team/Community Engagement Team. The scheduled campaign launch is synchronized with this week’s Beachcomber, which includes the Hope 2021 insert.  Mental health tips and videos will be available online at: 

Washington Listens helps people manage stress and anxiety they may be experiencing because of COVID-19. If you or anyone you know is having difficulties managing stress, call the Washington Listens support line at 1-833-681-0211. Hours are from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Saturdays and Sundays. TTY and language access services are available by using 7-1-1 or their preferred method. Resources and self-help tips are available on

Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler extended his emergency order directing all state-regulated health insurers to make additional coverage changes to aid consumers during the coronavirus pandemic. His order is in effect until Feb. 7. 

Gov. Jay Inslee’s Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery is now in effect.  The new plan, which follows a region-by-region approach, will ease some restrictions while focusing on the health and safety of all Washingtonians.  The plan outlines the metrics that will be used to determine phases for each of the eight regions. The Department of Health will evaluate these metrics weekly and will announce any changes to current phase status every Friday. Currently, all eight regions are starting out in Phase 1, the most restrictive of the phases “Our primary concern throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has been the health and safety of all Washington residents,” Inslee said. “This plan continues those efforts, and puts us on a path towards recovery. I’m thankful that people across our state have demonstrated their compassion for others by social distancing, masking up and avoiding gatherings. Our efforts have saved lives, but we’re not done yet. Every single choice we make in the coming weeks and months could ensure that more people are able to see this pandemic through.”    

Small Business Administration (SBA) began releasing more detailed guidance for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The SBA has authorized additional funding for eligible businesses that have not yet received PPP loans, under similar criteria from the initial round.  Eligible businesses for this program include small businesses, 501(c) (3) nonprofits, 501(c)(19) veterans’ organizations or tribal business concerns that have fewer than 500 employees or otherwise meet the SBA size standard. An additional program allows businesses to apply for a second loan that is capped at $2 million. SBA has not yet issued complete guidance and forms to support changes to the forgiveness process. For more information, contact your local lender or visit:    

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said Tuesday the federal government will no longer hold back coronavirus vaccine doses it kept in reserve, and it is asking states to open vaccinations to people 65 and older and people with chronic conditions who are at higher risk of severe disease. The change is an attempt to accelerate lagging distribution, as Covid-19 deaths have soared to their highest levels since the pandemic began. All existing doses will be sent to states to provide initial inoculations. Second doses are to be provided by new waves of manufacturing. 

CDC emphasizes that individuals who were previously infected and recovered should still get vaccinated due to the “severe health risks” and uncertainty regarding the duration of natural immunity. Additionally, the degree of natural immunity “varies from person to person.” The duration of the immunity conferred by vaccination remains uncertain as well, but research is still ongoing via clinical trials. Depending on the duration of immunity following vaccination, it may be necessary for individuals to receive regular boosters to provide longer-term protection. 

Pandemic restrictions on nonessential travel at the U.S.-Canada border will enter their 11th month, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. This is an important decision, and one that will keep people on both sides of the border safe,” he told reporters. The restrictions also apply to asylum seekers attempting to enter Canada from the United States. The current measures will remain in place until at least Feb. 21.  

An online tool and app called PhaseFinder is being rolled out to help people discover if they qualify to get a coronavirus vaccine, using just a few simple questions. The Washington State Department of Health’s PhaseFinder began a test run at the end of December and should launch for the general public next week. According to the state’s plans, the full version of the survey will ask users to input their age, ZIP code, job type, along with any pre-existing conditions and risk factors. 

Progress on Community Support Operations:

Emergency Operations Center (EOC): The EOC activated in response to the pandemic emergency on March 12th, ten months ago (307 days). Four operational priorities remain our goals: health, food security, housing security and economic recovery.

Volunteers: A total of 41 volunteers contributed 392 hours of work to VashonBePrepared’s pandemic emergency response in the most recent reporting period, bringing the total contributed hours to 20,750. That’s an uptick due to work underway on the impending COVID-19 vaccination effort. At the FEMA reimbursement grant rate of $31.72/hour, VashonBePrepared volunteers have logged nearly $659,000 of in-kind value that can be applied to reimbursement grant applications. The total includes hours contributed by the Vashon EOC Team, Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), and Community Care Team (CCT). VashonBePrepared also gives thanks for the many hours of work in support of the Vashon community by the staff and volunteers at local social services agencies.

EOC/MRC/Vashon Pharmacy: As detailed above, in Vashon Vaccine Availability Survey #4, plans are nearly complete to conduct a high volume drive-through COVID-19 vaccination operation at the Pharmacy. A number of VashonBePrepared teams have been working in support of our partner, Vashon Pharmacy.

EOC/MRC/Community Engagement Team: Work is also under way on a public education campaign to support all Vashon vaccination providers: Vashon Pharmacy, Vashon Natural Medicine, and Sea Mar. The campaign will focus on helping islanders understand where and when they can be vaccinated, similar to the campaign in support of seasonal flu vaccination, which provided important lessons for the next step of COVID-19 vaccination.

Community Care Team/Community Engagement Team: After weeks of preparation, the Creating Strength mental health and resilience campaign launches this week. The nine-week series of tips and videos was delayed to synchronize with the upcoming Hope 2021 publication, which will be a multi-page insert in this week’s Beachcomber.
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Thank you Windermere Vashon for helping to make these alerts possible

Vashon-Maury Island Emergency Alerts    Alerts are broadcast on 1650AM, KVSH 101.9FM and the VoV free streaming app. They are published in text here, as well as VashonBePrepared.organd, and the VoV Facebook page.
We encourage you to develop your 1650AM listening habit because an AM radio signal may be your only source of information in a serious island emergency.

Voice of Vashon thanks Windermere Vashon Real Estate for their support making 1650AM and this alert possible.

~ Your Emergency Alert Team