Editor’s note: This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in Washington state from March 9-15, 2020.
Washington schools are closed. Check here for developments
Gov. Jay Inslee announced that he will be signing an emergency proclamation to temporarily shut down bars and restaurants and even further limit the size of gatherings during the coronavirus.
Restaurants will be allowed to have take-out and delivery services, but no in-person dining.
The ban applies to restaurants, bars, dance halls, clubs, theaters, health and fitness clubs, and other similar indoor social or recreational venues must cease operations until March 31.
Inslee is expected to make the announcement on Monday.
It's unknown how long the shut down will be in place for.
Crowds are now limited to 50 people, a decrease from Inslee's initial ban of gatherings of 250 or more.
An emergency physician who tested positive for coronavirus was employed at EvergreenHealth. In a statement, the hospital said:
"EvergreenHealth is providing care for one of our physicians who has a confirmed case of COVID-19. He is in critical condition but stable. Out of respect for our patient’s privacy and that of his family, there is nothing more we can share at this time."
The CDC is recommending in-person events with 50 or more people should be canceled in the next 8 weeks.
The Associated Press reports that the first dose will be delivered Monday in a clinical trial for potential coronavirus vaccine, according to a government official.
There are now 769 total cases of coronavirus in Washington state. Among those total cases are 42 deaths.
A Pike Place Market member has tested positive for coronavirus. In a release, a Market spokesperson said:
"We have already contacted everyone in the Market who this individual had contact with in order to evaluate the exposure risk and assess whether they need to self-quarantine. The individual spent time in a very specific area of the Market and that area has been closed and is undergoing a deep cleaning. We are following the cleaning regimen advised by public health officials. Currently, the risk to the public is low to Market visitors, according to county officials."
Starbucks will be temporarily closing some of its U.S. and Canada stores in an effort to promote social distancing. They will be switching to a "to-go" model, putting emphasis on using the app to order. Customers can still walk up to the counter to order or order ahead and walk in to get it, or use the drive-thru. Read more here.
King County has reported an additional 2 deaths due to the coronavirus, bringing the county's total to 37. There are at least 420 positive cases in the county.
An emergency physician in his 40s is in critical condition with symptoms consistent with coronavirus, according to the American College of Emergency Physicians. It's unknown if the physician's case was a case of occupational transmission or community-based spread of coronavirus. It is unknown what hospital they worked at.
The Summit at Snoqualmie ski and snowboarding resort will suspend operations at the end of the day until further notice. Read more about the closure here.
King County has announced that it is adding two additional sites to serve as a quarantine/isolation site. Those sites are at the Eastgate Parking lot (13620 Eastgate Way in Bellevue) and the Issaquah Motel (1801 12th Avenue NW, Issaquah.)
Many travelers entering the U.S. over the weekend faced hours long lines at immigration checkpoints in airports because of screenings for coronavirus. At this point, there are no reports of lines at Sea-Tac International Airport. Updates on the Port of Seattle's COVID-19 response at the airport can be found here.
Seattle based Alaska Airlines reported that a customer service agent at San Francisco International Airport tested positive Friday for COVID-19. Alaska said the employee left work ill Tuesday, is in quarantine, and doing well. Alaska said at this time, it does not believe any guests had prolonged contact with the employee.
Governor Inslee Saturday evening addressed some misinformation floating around that he had plans to quarantine the entire state due to the coronavirus. Gov. Inslee said that is not true.
In his tweet, he wrote, "Let me be clear: Neither me nor my staff are engaged in conversations to quarantine or seal off any part of Washington state."
President Trump has tested negative for the coronavirus. The White House says anyone close to the president or vice president will get a temperature check. Trump's Europe travel ban has expanded to the United Kingdom and Ireland. He's also declared a national emergency.
Stevens Passed announced it will close the resort from March 15-22 to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. The announcement came from its parent company, Vail Resorts, which said it's closing all of its 37 resorts. Officials said they will use the time to monitor the coronavirus situation and reassess the rest of the season.
Crystal Mountain Ski Resort is also closing Sunday due to coronavirus concerns.
The Washington State Health Department confirmed 40 people have died from coronavirus across the state as of Saturday out of 642 confirmed cases. Thirty-five of the deaths are in King County and of those, 27 are associated with Life Care Center of Kirkland.
An XFL Seattle Dragons player has tested positive for coronavirus. The Dragons player participated in a March 7 game against the Roughnecks in Houston and was asymptomatic at the time, according to a Seattle Dragons Team Director Jim Christman.
"He self-reported to team medical staff on Tuesday, March 10 and has been in quarantine since. A test was administered as early as possible, with the results received March 13. The league is alerting players, staff, vendors and partners associated with the Dragons, Roughnecks, and BattleHawks, as this player also participated in the February 29 game in St. Louis. The XFL is monitoring the situation closely and taking every measure necessary in accordance with recommendations set forth by the CDC," said Christman in a statement Saturday.
Emerald City Comic Con has been rescheduled to August 21-23, 2020. The event held at the Washington State Convention Center was canceled this month due to the coronavirus.
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan signed an emergency order Saturday to put a temporary moratorium on residential evictions to help people impacted by the coronavirus. The moratorium suspends evictions related to the non-payment or partial payment of rent for 30 days and prohibits late fees or other charges for late rental payments, according to the mayor’s office. The moratorium starts immediately.
President Trump says he has taken the coronavirus test and expects the results to come back in a day or two. The White House says anyone close to the president or vice president will get a temperature check.
The U.S. House passed an aid package early Saturday to provide direct relief to Americans affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The package would provide free tests, sick pay for workers, and bolster food programs. President Trump has thrown his support behind the package.
At least 1.2 million school kids and their families will be affected by statewide closures in Washington state.
A total of 37 people have died from coronavirus, among 568 total cases across the state, according to the Washington Department of Health Friday.
Governor Inslee announced Friday all private and public K-12 schools will close starting next week through April to help stop the spread of coronavirus.
The North Kitsap School District announced it will be closed starting Monday, March 16 through at least Friday, April 24 due to the coronavirus outbreak. The district is working with parents, students and staff to provide remote educational options for students, food resources for students who rely on school meals, and also childcare options for parents.
President Donald Trump declared a national emergency on Friday afternoon to bolster funding for fighting the coronavirus outbreak.
Trump says the emergency will open up nearly $50 billion for state and local governments to respond to the outbreak.
King County officials made changes to its temporary housing units in Kent and White Center after a homeless person waiting coronavirus test results in Kent left a quarantine facility.
Temporary housing units in Kent and White Center will only be available for people who are able to quarantine or isolate themselves without the need of social services or additional support.
"Sites for those with behavioral health needs will be identified and staffed appropriately," a statement from the county reads.
The concerns Kent officials had over a coronavirus quarantine site became a reality when a person awaiting test results left the facility, shoplifted items from a store, and boarded a Metro bus.
In a statement, Gov. Jay Inslee says he spoke to Vice President Mike Pence and requested the federal government immediately declare the coronavirus pandemic a national emergency.
"This will unlock additional resources and authorities for states like Washington on the front lines of this crisis. I am hopeful the president’s actions today will provide the assistance I asked for to help the workers, businesses, families and communities that are being impacted across Washington state," Inslee said in a statement.
“It is incumbent on all of us to acknowledge the gravity of this public health emergency and take the necessary actions now — not tomorrow, not next week — to slow the spread of the virus and save lives. By declaring a national emergency, the federal government can provide states with direct assistance to meet our residents’ needs for health care, shelter, food and cash assistance, and more.”
Five Boeing employees who work in Everett have tested positive for coronavirus, according to a message sent to all employees who work at the sire.
"Our affected employees will remain in quarantine and receive medical care until they’ve made a full recovery and are no longer infectious. Boeing Health Services will remain in contact with them throughout the recovery process to make sure these teammates are getting the care and support they need. We wish them all a speedy recovery," the message begins.
Following guidelines from the CDC, EvergreenHealth in Kirkland is suspending elective surgeries to conserve resources, supplies, and free up staff. The hospital will continue surgery for people in critical condition.
Pioneer Elementary School in the Olympia School District is closed Friday, March 13, because an "individual who has connections" to the school tested positive for the coronavirus.
Additionally, all schools in the Olympia School District will close all schools Monday, March 16.
The school district is taking additional social distancing measures by canceling field trips and many events. Read more here.
Thursday, March 12:
Meal plans organized for Washington students amid coronavirus school closures.
State offers help for jobs and businesses struggling with coronavirus impacts.
Hear from families of Life Care Center residents frustrated by the deadly coronavirus outbreak in Kirkland.
The Space Needle announced they are closing through March 31.
The Washington State Department of Health, alongside partners at Bloodworks Northwest, is encouraging eligible donors to continue to give blood.
UW Seattle grad student tested positive for coronavirus. The student was last on campus March 6 and is now recovering at home, out of state.
Mercer Island health officials confirm two cases of coronavirus, both associated with nursing homes. The residents from Sunrise Senior Living and Covenant Living at the Shores were taken to Bellevue's Overlake Hospital for care.
Do you know someone whose job is impacted by coronavirus? The Washington Emergency Management Division posted a guide of resources to help workers and businesses.
All Seattle Public Library locations will close 6 p.m. Friday, March 13 for at least one month.
The office of Mayor Jenny Durkan also announced, "Seattle Parks and Recreation will cancel all programming, rentals, and permitted events, and close all community centers, pools, environmental learning centers, and all other recreation facilities to the public -- except for preschool programs and hygiene services."
Seattle Art Museum, Asian Art Museum, and the PACCAR Pavilion at the Olympic Sculpture Park will be closed through March 31.
MoPOP, the Museum of Pop Culture at Seattle Center, is also temporarily closed.
Prestigious and longtime Seattle restaurant Canlis announced they would suspend dining room service and instead offer: "a breakfast bagel shed, a burger drive-thru for lunch, and a family meal dinner delivery service."
Seattle Symphony will offer free broadcasts of performances on their Facebook and YouTube pages, starting Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
As of 5 p.m. Thursday, 31 people have died from coronavirus in Washington state. There are 457 cases overall. There are 4,350 tests that came back negative, according to the state department of health.
UW Medicine officials announced two patients in the geriatric psych ward at UW Medical Center Northwest tested positive for coronavirus and 22 others in the ward are being tested. WATCH HERE
XFL suspends regular season games. Ticket holders will be issued refunds or credit towards future games.
King County has released its new numbers. There are 27 deaths in the county among 270 total cases.
Gov. Jay Inslee has announced that all public and private K-12 schools in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties are to be closed starting March 17 through April 27 due to the coronavirus. READ MORE HERE.
Watch a KING 5 special on Washington's coronavirus outbreak:
Disneyland in California will be closed on Friday amid coronavirus concerns. This is only 4th time in history that operations have been fully suspended. The other times were 9/11, the Northridge earthquake, and the national day of mourning after the JFK assassination.
The NCAA has canceled March Madness and all winter and spring championships and tournaments.
City of Snohomish is canceling all nonessential public meetings and special events through April 15, 2020. This will also include closing public access to City Hall beginning March 16, and City restrooms and parks beginning March 12, 2020.
City Council meetings will either be canceled or conducted in an abbreviated format thorough April 15, 2020. All Boards and Commission meetings, including the Midtown Planning District meeting will be canceled until April 15.
Life Care Center will be giving its daily update on patients. The nursing home in Kirkland is at the epicenter of the outbreak in Washington.
Thursday afternoon, Gov. Jay Inslee will announce new school guidelines to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.
The number of school districts closing for at least a few weeks continues to grow following Inslee's announcement that gatherings of 250 people or more is prohibited.
The National Hockey League says it decided to "pause" the season, following other leagues and organizations that have suspended play to help curtail the spread of the coronavirus.
Starbucks announced Wednesday that it will pay its employees for up to two weeks to stay home if they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or are exposed to the coronavirus.
The company is also considering transitioning some stores in the U.S. and Canada to drive-thru only while others may limit the number of people allowed inside.
Major League Soccer is reportedly suspending its season due to concerns about the coronavirus.
MLS had already planned to postpone two games involving the Seattle Sounders and San Jose Earthquakes.
The Mariners previously announced they will not play in Seattle this month.
The Port of Seattle cancelled the first two sailings of the cruise season.
The April 1 and April 5 sailings were "port of call" sailings. That means a vessel would make a one-day stop in Seattle on its way to another destination.
“This region is in a public health emergency and we will cancel the first two sailings of our cruise season,” said Port of Seattle Commission President Peter Steinbrueck. “The health, safety, and well being of our residents is our top priority.”
Saying it is "inevitable" that school closures will become mandated following Gov. Jay Inslee's ban on large gatherings, Eastside Catholic School is closing Friday, March 13.
Eastside Catholic will transition to digital learning and plans to resume normal operations April 20.
The Sultan School District Board of Directors voted to close all schools to students starting Friday, March 13 through April 10 to "help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our county and local community."
Several school districts in western Washington, including Seattle Public Schools, are now closed for at least two weeks.
Wednesday, March 11:
Crowds of over 250 people are now banned in Oregon. There are a total of 21 known cases of coronavirus in the state.
Tom Douglas restaurants will be closing starting Sunday. Douglas said no one on his team has coronavirus, but he is closing after CDC recommendations. The restaurants did not say when they would open again.
- The Edmonds School District will close starting Monday, March 16 and will remain closed until at least April 10.
- Everett public schools will close for a minimum of 14 days starting March 16. More information will be posted on their website.
UPDATE: President Donald Trump has banned travel of most foreign nationals from Europe to the US for 30 days in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus. The United Kingdom is exempt from this ban. Cargo from Europe will not be banned.
The ban does not apply to U.S. citizens or their immediate family members.
RELATED: State Department advises all US citizens to 'reconsider travel abroad' due to virus pandemic
A deli worker at the PCC grocery store at Green Lake Aurora tested positive for coronavirus. The employee last worked on March 8. The entire store closed for a deep cleaning and will reopen March 13. The kitchen and deli will be closed through March 26.
U.S. government issues Global Level 3 Health Advisory - Reconsider Travel
"The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to reconsider travel abroad due to the global impact of COVID-19. Many areas throughout the world are now experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and taking action that may limit traveler mobility, including quarantines and border restrictions. Even countries, jurisdictions, or areas where cases have not been reported may restrict travel without notice."
The City of Bellevue is closing all community center and parks facilities through March and postponing all Parks & Community Services events through April
Renowned Seattle chef Tom Douglas is temporarily closing 12 of his 13 restaurants amid the coronavirus outbreak, reports The Seattle Times. Dahlia Bakery will stay operating due to a hotel contract.
Marysville School District schools will close Friday, March 13 through at least April 12
A staff member in Senator Maria Cantwell’s Washington, D.C. office has tested positive for COVID-19, according to her office.
Everett public schools and the Monroe School District have announced closures. New closures are coming in throughout the night. You can see if your school is closed here
The Archdiocese of Seattle says it's canceling all masses.
The NBA has suspended the season after a player tested positive for coronavirus.
Actor Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson said they tested positive for coronavirus in Australia
Edit: The ban does not apply to U.S. citizens or their immediate family members. Cargo from Europe will not be banned.
President Donald Trump has banned all travel from Europe to the United States in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus. The United Kingdom is exempt from this ban.
President Trump addresses the nation on coronavirus. Click here to watch
Pac-12 announces the rest of the men's basketball tournament will be played without fans. Similar policies will apply to all Pac-12 competitions and events.
Starting Monday, March 16, Everett Public Schools will be closed for at least two weeks.
Eastern Washington University joined Western Washington University in switching to online learning effective immediately. This will be in effect for the rest of the academic school year.
The King County Sheriff's Office wants to remind community members to NOT call 911 or even a non-emergency line to report gatherings of 250 people or more. Gov. Jay Inslee announced a ban on those kinds of gatherings today.
You can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle will be closed until March 31 to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Everett's Imagine Children's Musuem will also be closed through March 31.
The Kittitas County Health Department now reports three confirmed cases of coronavirus. The third patient is a 56-year-old man and he had no known contact with the previous two cases. A 67-year-old woman and a person she had contact with are both in stable health after testing positive.
The Bellevue School District will be closed beginning Friday, March 13 through at least March 27. The district said there are no known cases in the district.
King County Courts are automatically excusing jurors who fall under groups that have an elevated risk of severe illness from the new coronavirus, a judge ordered Wednesday afternoon. Those groups include people older than 60, people with underlying health conditions such as heart disease, lung disease and diabetes, those with weakened immune systems and people who are pregnant.
King County Superior Court Presiding Judge Jim Rogers also ordered that non-trial testimony and arguments will be allowed to be held over the phone.
The Washington State Department of Health reports there are 29 deaths out of at least 366 overall cases in Washington state.
King County has reported an additional 4 deaths, bringing the total to 26.
A total of 65 residents at Life Care Center in Kirkland have been sent to hospitals since the coronavirus was detected at the facility, 26 people have died at the facility. It's unknown how many of those died of coronavirus and health officials are still investigating.
Seattle Public Schools will close for two weeks beginning March 12.
The closure is expected to last for at least two weeks.
The Lake Washington School District also announced that it was closing until March 27.
A statement was sent to families following the decision:
Together, we are facing an unprecedented health crisis in our community. In our response to COVID-19, we must depend on the wisdom of our health experts and elected officials and lean on the resolve of our strong community.
We have been following the guidance of Public Health Seattle and King County and
implementing preventive and responsive strategies, but in light of Governor Inslee’s request that all citizens practice measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, it is now time for the district to act swiftly.
Starting Thursday, March 12, Superintendent Denise Juneau and the Seattle School Board will close Seattle Public Schools for a minimum of 14 days as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently guides. This necessary action is an effective way to disrupt widespread infection.
Beginning Thursday, March 12, all school building activities including school day instruction, childcare, health services, enrichment, etc. are canceled until further notice. Wednesday, March 11, childcare and extended day supports will continue as planned. We have an emergency food plan which will be put into place on Monday, March 16. More information will be provided by Friday, March 13.
The decision to close the district was extremely difficult. We know that closing our schools will impact our most vulnerable families and we recognize that working families depend on the consistency and predictability of supports and services our schools offer. We are working with partners and the city to determine how to best mitigate the impact closing schools will have on working families.
We also recognize there are still a lot of unknowns about this disease and just how prevalent it is in our community. Yesterday, we had our first staff member confirmed with COVID-19. As testing becomes more readily available, these cases will increase. While children appear to be more protected from extreme symptoms, adults, including our educators and employees, need support and protection as well.
As we have shared many times, our goal has been to keep our doors open as long as possible in order to support our students and the entire community. Our incredible school staff, school leaders, and central support staff have been unwavering in this commitment. We appreciate their service to our community, children, and families.
It is in times like these that our community values become visible. Please take care of each other. Reach out to neighbors and lend a hand to those in need. We will get through this, but it will take all of us thinking creatively and continuing to support our community’s children.
The superintendent will continue to stay in conversation with the city, state, and local officials, and partners as our entire region responds to new guidance and a call to take an active role combating COVID-19.
More information will be communicated Thursday, March 12, to all families. Please check the Coronavirus 2019 Update webpage for new information.
Office of Public Affairs"
The CDC released recommendations for King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties in an effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.
"These approaches are used to minimize morbidity and mortality caused by COVID-19 and minimize social and economic impacts of COVID-19. Individuals, communities, businesses, and healthcare organizations are all part of a community mitigation strategy," a statement reads.
The Tacoma Defiance closed their match against the San Diego Loyal Wednesday night following Inslee's ban on large events in three counties.
Seattle's XFL team, the Dragons, will host the LA Wildcats on Sunday at 4 p.m. at CenturyLink Field without fans.
The Seattle Sounders say they are working with health authorities and government officials following the ban on events of 250 people or more.
"Our organization must remain flexible in these efforts, and at this time, that includes heeding Governor Inslee's call to postpone our home match on March 21 versus FC Dallas at CenturyLink Field," a statement from the team reads.
Beginning Monday, March 23, Washington State University will not have classes in person amid a coronavirus outbreak in Washington state.
The Seattle Mariners are working with the Major League Baseball Office of the Commissioner on alternative plans for their games, following Gov. Inslee's announcement that he is banning large-group events through at least March.
"While we hope to be back to playing baseball in Seattle as soon as possible, the health and safety of our community is the most important consideration," a statement from the team reads.
We will provide more information about our plans for the games as it becomes available."
Season ticket members, suite holders, and group buyers will receive credit for tickets to un-played games. Single-game ticket holders who purchased tickets through the team will be refunded.
In addition to Gov. Inslee's ban on gatherings of 250 people or more, King County officials are prohibiting events of fewer than 250 people unless organizers can prove they have followed "very clear public health recommended steps are taken."
Gov. Jay Inslee prohibited gatherings of 250 people or more in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties until further notice.
That prohibition includes all gatherings, including recreational, social, spiritual, etc.
The prohibition could be expanded, or reduced in the days to come.
The World Health Organization has classified the coronavirus outbreak as a pandemic.
The Puyallup Activity Center is closed until further notice amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Catholic Community Services lunch program will provide boxed lunch today.
Tacoma Public Schools will provide meals to all students impacted by emergency closures due to the coronavirus outbreak in Washington state.
Meals will be served from 10 a.m. to noon beginning March 11 at Lowell, Mary Lyon, and Sheridan elementary schools.
Several schools in western Washington are closed or have moved to online learning due to the outbreak. Click here for school closures.
UW Medicine is temporarily suspending routine visits with patients due to the coronavirus outbreak, with exceptions.
The new policy includes UW Medical Center's Montlake and Northwest campuses, Harborview Medical Center, and Valley Medical Center.
"This is a difficult decision. It’s not an easy decision to make, but it is critically important that we keep our patients safe during this outbreak," said Lisa Brandenburg, president of UW Medicine hospitals and clinics.
Routine visits will be suspended until the coronavirus is no longer perceived as a threat to the community.
- Obstetric patients may have one partner and one birth support person accompany them.
- Nursery and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) patients may have one birth parent plus one significant other who must remain in the room for the duration of the visit.
- Patients who are at the end-of-life may have two visitors.
- Patients with disruptive behavior, in which a family member is key to their care, may have one visitor.
- Patients who have altered mental status or developmental delays (where caregiver provides safety) may have one visitor.
- Minors under age 18 may have one visitor, parent, or guardian.
- Patients undergoing surgery or procedures may have 1 visitor who must leave the hospital as soon as possible after the procedure/surgery.
- Patients who have an appointment at a UW Medicine hospital-based clinic, laboratory, or radiology, as well as those visiting the Emergency Department, may have one person with them.
- Patients who are receiving lodging services as part of their medical treatment plan are excluded from the visitor restriction policy.
The King County Council approved a suite of legislation on Tuesday to aid in the county's response to the coronavirus outbreak.
The package includes:
- $28.2 million in funding for COVID-19 response:
- $15 million: Purchase and improvements for Kent motel to be used as isolation/quarantine facility. Also funds installation of modular isolation/quarantine units at several sites in King County, including White Center and Seattle.
- $4.5 million: Temporary staffing to manage the Kent motel.
- $6.13 million: Public Health funding for coordinating a regional and community response to COVID-19, compiling and distributing guidance, staffing facilities, etc.
- $1.6 million: Ensure homeless shelters have ability to provide isolation, staff and other needs to people with symptoms of COVID-19.
- $1 million: Provide funding for the Office of Equity and Social Justice to provide information and resources to populations with language access needs.
- A motion that extends the deadlines for proviso and other reports from the Executive so that staff can concentrate on responding to the emergency.
- A motion that extends the proclamation of emergency until the end of the emergency, allowing emergency procurement protocols to remain in effect and avoid delays in necessary spending. This also extends the authorization for overtime for county employees as needed.
- A change to county code that allows King County to accept large donations without prior approval by Council. This will allow the County to quickly apply any donated funding toward its continued response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The City of Kirkland was told that some test samples from first responders who are experiencing symptoms of coronavirus may no longer be viable due to the time that has lapsed since they were collected, according to a statement March 10.
Secondary tests were taken within an hour. The results are being expedited.
As of March 10, there were 29 firefighters and four police officers in quarantine. Eleven firefighters have been released from quarantine.
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, the Washington Health Benefit Exchange announced a limited-time special enrollment period (SEP) for qualified individuals that don’t have insurance.
The SEP runs through April 8, 2020, and will allow uninsured people 30 days to enroll in health insurance through Washington Healthplanfinder.
“It is apparent that many in our state have been exposed to this virus and that health insurance will be critical to those seeking treatment,” said Exchange Chief Executive Officer Pam MacEwan. “Individuals need to have peace of mind to take care of all health needs, especially if they are at a high risk. Given today’s exceptional circumstances we are enabling those who are uninsured to enroll and gain access to the vital services they may need.”
Tuesday, March 10:
Two more Boeing employees in Everett tested positive for coronavirus. That's a total of three Boeing workers who with COVID-19 at Boeing's Everett site.
Western Washington University will move to online classes at all locations from March 11 through the end of the quarter on March 20.
Gov. Inslee will ban crowds of 250 or more in Seattle amid the coronavirus outbreak. Inslee is expected to make the official announcement at a press conference Wednesday with city and county leaders.
Challenger elementary school in the Mukilteo School District will be closed for two days for deep cleaning and disinfecting after a staff member tested positive for coronavirus.
The Snohomish County Public Health Department reports a total of 60 confirmed cases and 55 suspected cases with tests still pending. There have been 60 potential cases that were ruled negative.
Macy's at the Tacoma Mall is closed after an employee tested positive for coronavirus. The employee had not been in the store since March 3.
Gov. Jay Inslee will hold a press conference in Seattle Wednesday at 10:15 a.m. with local mayors and county executives to address new community strategies and social distancing. Watch the press conference on KING 5 News and king5.com, the KING 5 app, Facebook page, and YouTube channel.
RELATED: Potential for thousands of coronavirus cases in Washington is 'very disturbing,' says Gov. Inslee
The Stanwood Camano School District will be closed from Tuesday, March 11-13. School activities and athletics are canceled.
Seattle's Aki Kurose Middle School will be closed Wednesday, March 11 until further notice after a staff member tested positive for coronavirus.
Hazen High School in the Renton School District will remain closed until March 19 after a student tested positive, but has since recovered.
Seattle restaurant Local 360 announced they would be closing for good due to impacts from the coronavirus outbreak. Read the full announcement here
Skagit County health officials announce their first case of coronavirus. A woman in her 40s is isolating at home. She appears to have acquired the virus through community transmission, according to the health department.
Whatcom County health officials announce their first case of coronavirus. A woman in her 60s was treated at PeaceHealth St. Joseph's Medical Center in Bellingham and has since been discharged.
Washington state's latest report is 267 total cases. See the total count per county here.
Public Health - Seattle & King County is reporting 74 new cases of people with coronavirus, bringing the total in the county to 190.
In addition, two new deaths have been reported, bringing the total number of deaths to 22 in King County.
There are 64 employees of Kirkland's Life Care Center showing symptoms caused by the coronavirus.
Approximately 30 have been tested so far.
There are 21 residents still on site who have tested positive and 12 who tested negative. Another 12 are pending results and four tests were inconclusive.
A Joint Base Lewis-McChord service member and their spouse tested presumptive positive for coronavirus are are now quarantined off based, according to a statement from JBLM.
JBLM leadership is awaiting official confirmation from the CDC that the service member has coronavirus.
Twelve individuals have potentially been exposed and are in quarantine.
Another 16 confirmed cases of people with coronavirus were reported in Snohomish County just hours after Gov. Jay Inslee announced a new set of rules and expanded policies.
According to health officials, there are now 54 confirmed cases. Seventeen people are hospitalized, seven are isolated at home, 16 cases are under investigation, and 13 have recovered.
The Snohomish Health District is investigating three presumptive positive test for the coronavirus at the Josephine Caring Community facility in Stanwood.
A female in her 70s tested positive after being taken to an area hospital. Two additional residents then tested positive.
An additional seven tests are outstanding.
Facility staff are taking measures to control the spread of the virus.
The facility also hosts a child care center which has put measures in place to separate children from long-term care residents.
Bloodworks Northwest says the blood supply in the region could be at risk in the coming days due to the number of blood drive cancellations.
“It is our shared civic responsibility to get the word out that our community is under a grave threat,” said Curt Bailey, CEO and president of Bloodworks Northwest. “The cancellation of blood drives creates a serious public health concern since nearly 60% of our blood supply is collected at mobile blood drives. Without access to locations where the public can donate blood, we’re at a tipping point where children and adults experiencing trauma, those going through cancer treatment, and premature babies, among others, will not have blood available. Together, we can rise up to this challenge, but we must act now.”
The American Cross is also urging healthy people to donate blood amid the the coronavirus outbreak.
Gov. Jay Inslee said the state will see the number of coronavirus cases grow unless people don't take an active role in preventing the spread.
"We have a long road ahead of us," he said.
In addition to new requirements for nursing homes and assisted living facilities, Gov. Jay Inslee announced an expansion of state policies to support workers and businesses financially impacted by the coronavirus.
Among the expanded policies:
- Workers will be able to receive unemployment benefits and employers will get relief of benefit charges if an employer needs to curtail or shut down operations temporarily because a worker becomes sick and other workers need to be isolated or quarantined as a result of COVID-19.
- A worker that follows guidance issued by a medical or public health official to isolate or quarantine themselves as a result of exposure to COVID-19 and is not receiving paid sick leave from their employer, may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits.
- If a worker falls seriously ill and is forced to quit, they may qualify for Paid Family Medical Leave while ill under the existing program. Once recovered and available for work, they may apply for unemployment benefits.
- It removes the full-time requirement and expands standby ability to part time/less than full-time workers who are isolated.
The governor also announced new rules that give people currently claiming unemployment who are in isolation or quarantined as a result of the coronavirus more leniency about deadlines and appointments.
Financial penalties for employers who file tax reports late, pay taxes late, or do not respond to information requests in a timely fashion as a result of the virus are also waived.
The new rules around nursing homes and assisted living facilities include:
- Visitors must be adults and the visit must take place in the resident’s room. This does not apply to end-of-life situations.
- All visitors must follow COVID-19 screening and follow reasonable precautionary measures. Precautionary measures include, but are not limited to, wearing personal protective equipment, social distancing, or visiting in designated locations.
- All visitors must sign into a visitor’s log. Owners and operators must retain that log for 30 days.
- Employees or volunteers must be screened for COVID-19 symptoms at the start of each shift.
- People who live in nursing homes or assisted living facilities and who test positive for COVID-19 must be isolated away from other people.
- Owners, operators, staff and volunteers are prohibited from disclosing protected and confidential health information, except as otherwise provided by law or with the resident’s consent.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee plans to announce new policies to support workers and businesses impacted by the new coronavirus, which is officially called COVID-19.
Inslee also will detail new rules for long-term care centers.
The number of deaths in Washington state is at least 22. Nineteen of the deaths are being associated with the Life Care Center, a nursing home in Kirkland.
Health officials report more than 160 cases statewide. Life Care Center spokesman Tim Killian said 31 residents still in the facility have tested positive for the virus. Life Care said 70 of its 180 employees have shown symptoms and are no longer working.
King County Council Vice Chair Reagan Dunn is asking the council and Executive Dow Constantine to consider a volunteer program to assist with the coronavirus outbreak.
Dunn's motion would identify volunteer needs within King County. If the motion passes, reports on how the program could be established are due back as early as two weeks.
The motion is being considered Tuesday morning.
“Many people feel powerless to help in this evolving crisis,” Dunn said. “This program will empower those people with safe and productive avenues to share their expertise and make a difference as we fight COVID-19 and prevent its further spread.”
Though Seattle schools remain open, the district is allowing parents to keep their children home. All absences will be excused, a letter to parents says.
All Meridian School District schools will be closed on Tuesday, March 10 and Wednesday, March 11 after a staff member at a middle school was exposed to someone outside of Whatcom County that tested positive for coronavirus. As a precaution, school buildings and buses will receive additional deep cleaning. All district activities, athletics, and meetings are also canceled. The staff will remain at home.
“Since our staff member has been in school all last week and today, they have been in contact with our other staff and students. Given the size of our district, most of our staff wear many hats and interact with each of our buildings. Our middle school students visit the high school for athletics and math. All our students ride the same buses,” Superintendent Dr. James Everett said. “Student and staff safety is our primary concern and it is this interconnectedness that has driven the decision to close the district for two days out of precaution.”
Schools are expected to reopen on Thursday, March 12.
Gov. Jay Inslee will not hold public bill signings for any remaining bills for the 2020 Legislative session. Gov. Inslee's Legislative Director Drew Shirk sent a message to legislators and legislative staff that said the decision “is one extra precaution we’re taking to maintain public health standards and minimize COVID-19 exposure in large, social settings.”
The public can still watch the bill signings on TVW.
“We did not make this decision lightly – public access to the bill process is a priority for Gov. Inslee. This recommendation comes from numerous medical and health officials over the past few days, and our office will do all we can to support this recommendation.”
Monday, March 9:
A resident at The Gardens at Juanita Bay in Kirkland has tested presumptive positive for coronavirus. The resident was transferred to the Seattle VA Medical Center for further care.
A spouse of a JBLM service member (who lives off base) has tested positive for coronavirus. The spouse has not recently visited the base. The servicemember is also being tested. Both are self-quarantined in their home off base.
All Snohomish School District schools will be closed Tuesday after a district employee in the transportation department tested positive for coronavirus.
Four more Tacoma schools will also be closed. Click below for the latest school closures.
Two residents at Columbia Lutheran Home care facility in Seattle's Phinney Ridge neighborhood have tested positive for coronavirus.
An employee at Boeing's Everett facility has tested positive for coronavirus. This employee is not the same employee who was sent home sick last week.
The company released the following statement Monday, "Boeing is providing its full support to an employee at our Everett facility who has tested positive for COVID-19. The employee is now in quarantine receiving the care and treatment necessary for their recovery. We have notified our employees and are following the advice of public health officials. As a precaution, we’ve asked all coworkers of the employee who were in close contact to remain home to self-quarantine and self-monitor, and we’ve conducted a thorough cleaning of the work areas and common spaces."
Seattle band Pearl Jam is postponing their North American tour in 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak. Read their announcement here
Snohomish County is reporting a total of 45 cases of coronavirus, including one person who died and one person who has fully recovered.
A man in his 80s has died from coronavirus at Bellevue's Overlake Medical Center. He had been a resident at Kirkland's Life Care Center.
Life Care Center in Kirkland tested 35 more residents for coronavirus. Of the 35 tests, 31 came back positive for COVID-19. Three of the tests came back inconclusive and one came back negative.
RELATED: Coronavirus claims lives of at least 13 Life Care Center residents in Kirkland and 31 more test positive
The City of Burien declared a state of emergency due to public health impacts from coronavirus.
Life Care Center in Kirkland is holding a press conference around 5 p.m. As of Monday afternoon, 13 residents from the nursing home facility have died from coronavirus.
Joseph Caring Community facility in Standwood (Snohomish County) says a resident has tested presumptively positive for coronavirus. She is a patient in her 70s who had been at the care center for an unrelated issue.
President Trump and Vice President Pence deliver coronavirus briefing from the White House.
Officials at Life Care Center in Kirkland updated reporters Monday afternoon on the status of coronavirus cases at the nursing home where more than a dozen residents have been confirmed to have died of COVID-19.
Spokesman Tim Killian told reporters that of the residents who have died in the hospital since the known start of the outbreak, 13 have been confirmed to have died of COVID-19.
Of the 180 employees at the Kirkland facility, 70 had been showing symptoms and were self-sequestered, he said. At least one employee has been hospitalized, he said. Five of those employees who had symptoms have returned to work after following the Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, he said.
Public Health - Seattle & King County reported 33 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the official total number of cases in the county to 116. Three new deaths were also reported, bringing the total number of King County deaths to 20.
The City of Kirkland says one first responder tested positive for COVID-19. Another eight who were symptomatic tested negative.
Thirty-one firefighters and three police officers are in quarantine. Most are in isolation or at home.
Fire Station 21 is closed and being used for isolation, along with another facility.
With the cruise season under a month away, the Port of Seattle is "actively reviewing multiple options" according to a statement from the port.
The port is working with cruise operators, the Coast Guard, public health authorities, and city leaders ahead of the cruise season.
"The safety, health, and well being of cruise passengers, employees, community and first responders always comes first," the port said.
The Port of Seattle's cruise season is expected to run between April 1 through Oct. 19. Approximately $900 million in business is generated in the region, with 5,500 jobs directly supported.
The port anticipates it will serve 650,000 passengers this season.
A coalition of Puget Sound-area philanthropy, government and business partners announced the creation of a response fund to help with the coronavirus outbreak in the region.
The response fund is designed to "complement the work of public health officials and expand local capacity to address the outbreak as effectively as possible."
As of March 9, more than $2.5 million has been contributed.
The partnership includes Seattle Foundation, United Way of King County, King County, City of Seattle, Alaska Airlines, Amazon, Microsoft, and The Starbucks Foundation.
The first phase of grants will be dedicated to communities "disproportionately affected" by the coronavirus by addressing "the economic impact of reduced and lost work due to the broader COVID-19 outbreak..."
Green River College in Auburn announced that beginning on March 10, all classes for the remainder of the winter quarter “will be completed in a manner that reduces face-to-face meetings.” All day and evening classes across all Green River College locations are canceled on Monday.
Sunday, March 8:
Kitsap County has reported its first case of coronavirus.
The first death in Grant County has been reported, bringing the statewide total to 19.
There are now 136 total cases statewide, according to the Department of Health.
12 additional cases have been reported in King County, with two more deaths. There are now 18 dead in the state and 123 positive cases of coronavirus statewide.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $5 million to help public health agencies in the greater Seattle area in testing for coronavirus. The foundation will soon offer at-home testing kits.
Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma will transition to distance-learning only Tuesday, March 10 until the end of spring break on March 30, out of an abundance of caution. PLU will be closed on Monday, March 9 as faculty prepare for the transition. As of this writing there are no confirmed cases of coronavirus at PLU. The campus will remain open.
Everett Public Schools will close Woodside Elementary Monday, March 9 and Tuesday, March 10 after a student started exhibiting signs of coronavirus and has a parent who tested positive for the virus. The student did not attend school last week. During the closure on March 9 and 10 the school will receive an additional intense disinfecting, as well as the buses feeding that school.
Tacoma Public Schools will close Mary Lyon Elementary after the Pierce County Health Department notified the superintendent that a staff member at the school has tested presumptive positive for coronavirus.
For Mary Lyon only, this means no classes or before or after school activities March 9-10.
The district also will use the closure time to clean the school.
What are coronavirus symptoms?
The symptoms of coronavirus are similar to the flu or colds. Symptoms include a fever, cough, and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
The severity of symptoms ranges significantly. Some cases are very mild with symptoms similar to the common cold, and some cases are more like severe pneumonia that require hospitalization. Most deaths have been reported in older adults who had other health conditions, according to DOH.
Symptoms may appear as soon as two days after being exposed to the coronavirus or as long as 14 days.
A new Washington call center has been set up to answer your questions about COVID-19. If you have questions about how the virus spreads, what is being done in Washington state, and what you can do if you have symptoms, call 1-800-525-0127 and press #.