Coronavirus Coverage | KNKX

Coronavirus Coverage

KNKX Public Radio is working to keep you updated on the latest developments of the outbreak of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus. In addition to bringing you daily stories and updates on air during Morning Edition and All Things Considered, you can find stories about the outbreak below. Find the latest numbers from officials tracking confirmed cases below, as well as all the stories from KNKX. 

A house in West Seattle has a candy chute among its Halloween decorations, in preparation for socially distanced trick-or-treating. But experts say families should steer clear of the annual door-to-door tradition.
Posey Gruener / KNKX

Getting COVID-19 can be scarier than any horror movie or Halloween haunted house. Health officials and pediatricians aren't telling us to skip Halloween this year, but they do urge serious caution.

A person wears a mask as she waits to enter the RAM Restaurant and Brewery, Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in Tacoma, Wash.
Ted S. Warren / The Associated Press (file)

Pierce County officials, in an effort to help restaurants stay in business and retain jobs, will offer an incentive for customers to dine inside restaurants next month.

The two-week "restaurant rally," is scheduled for Nov. 8-19, excluding Friday and Saturday. Restaurants will offer a 30 percent discount to customers who dine inside, and then the county will reimburse the businesses. 

 

There has been some talk at the national level about aiming for herd immunity with this pandemic. Officials in the Trump administration are eager to reopen the economy. 

Herd immunity would involve allowing COVID-19 to spread, which in theory would eventually make people immune.

Barrett and Audrey Stowe with their parents, Courtney and James. Barrett interviewed Audrey and two friends about what advice they'd give themselves if they could travel back in time to before the pandemic.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Imagine you could step into a time machine and travel back to a year ago. What would you tell yourself now that you’ve experienced life in a pandemic? 

Seventeen-year-old Barrett Stowe, who attends Tacoma School of the Arts, asked two friends and his sister that question. It turns out the upheaval of the past six months has led to some realizations about what’s important to them in life.

Barrett produced his own radio story, with guidance from KNKX staff, as part of our Take the Mic youth voices project.

The Associated Press (file)

Wash your hands, wear a mask, stay socially distant — and get a flu shot. This is the message health officials are preaching as we head into cooler months when we’ll all be spending more time indoors.

A bed sits made at a long-term care center in Rockland, Mass., back in March. Long-term care facilities in Washington state and across the country have been particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 outbreaks during the pandemic.
David Goldman / The Associated Press (file)

For months, long-term care facilities in Washington were closed not only to visitors but also to state regulatory authorities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These facilities were early hotspots, driving the nation's coronavirus death toll this spring.

That posed a big problem for the staff and volunteers of Washington's long-term care ombuds office.

"For our role, visitation is key," ombuds Patricia Hunter told KNKX. 

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX (file)

Since the onset of the pandemic, food insecurity rates have more than doubled in our state. That’s according to researchers at the University of Washington who have just compiled the results from their first round of a statewide survey. 

It was done this summer in cooperation with Washington State University and Tacoma Community College, as well as partners in local, county and state governments.

Ryan Davenport teaches seventh grade social studies at Keithley Middle School in Parkland. He's welcomed KNKX to follow one of his classes through this unprecedented year.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

At schools around the region, a new ritual has been taking place. It’s the back-to-school, COVID-era laptop distribution, as almost all public schools in the state have begun the year with remote learning.

A trio of dogs peer out of the back, open window of a vehicle while on an outing Friday, April 3, 2020, in Seattle.
Elaine Thompson / The Associated Press

UPDATE, 6 a.m. Sept. 10: Friday's pop-up event has been postponed due to wildfire conditions. You can find an up-to-date calendar of future events here.

Local animal shelters in King County have banded together to create a mobile pet food bank to help owners feed their animals during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Several organizations offer pet food to owners who need it. But after animal shelters initially closed in response to Gov. Jay Inslee's stay-home order, they decided to get out into the community with a truck and a tent.

Adrian Florez / KNKX

The King County Prosecutor’s Office recently filed it’s 11th domestic violence homicide charge for the year. There were only four domestic violence murder cases all of last year. Calls to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which includes Washington state, also are up. Domestic violence experts say COVID-19 is making the situation for domestic violence victims worse.

Transmission Podcast
Adrian Florez / KNKX

 

In March of this year, as the novel coronavirus started to take hold of the region, students and teachers were notified that in person school was over and remote learning would get underway. At first, everyone thought the move to online learning would be temporary, but it wasn’t.

In this file photo from March, a man carrying a sleeping bag looks at a sign on the door of the Bread of Life Mission in Seattle's downtown Pioneer Square neighborhood. COVID-19 cases have risen in King County’s homeless population throughout the summer.
Ted S. Warren / The Associated Press (file)

UPDATE, Aug. 26: King County public health officials say one person has died in connection with the Harborview Hall outbreak. The man, who was in his 70s, died Aug. 7 and had "underlying medical conditions," public health officials said. The King County Medical Examiner's Office lists COVID-19 as one of the causes of death.  

This Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, file photo, shows the Pac-12 logo during the second half of an NCAA college football game between Arizona State and Kent State, in Tempe, Ariz.
Ralph Freso / The Associated Press (file)

We're learning more about what went into the decision by the Pac-12 Conference to cancel all sports through the end of the year due to the coronavirus pandemic. KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked with Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick about that, and what he thinks should happen in the spring. 

Adrian Florez / KNKX

It’s been more than five months since the nation’s first novel coronavirus death happened, right here in the Seattle area.

Now, more than 100 vaccine candidates are being developed, and dozens have entered the human-trial stage. But they’re likely still a long way off from mass production and distribution.

In this episode of Transmission, host Gabriel Spitzer and producer Jennifer Wing discuss how the RNA vaccine works and why some elements of vaccine development are going so much more quickly than usual.

A person wears a mask as she waits to enter the Ram Restaurant and Brewery, Tuesday, June 23, in Tacoma.
Ted S. Warren / The Associated Press

Health officials in Pierce County are taking steps to learn just how many people are wearing masks in public, and if they’re wearing them correctly. They say their findings show it’s not enough, and habits vary widely depending on the type of location.

Staff and volunteers with the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department recently conducted a 48-hour survey, during which they observed people in more than 20 locations countywide.

The Crocodile in Seattle
Joe Mabel / Wikimedia Commons

The statewide stay-at-home order shuttered live music venues in March. Now, those businesses are questioning if they will be able to survive, with no source of revenue for the foreseeable future.

That could be the fate for The Crocodile in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood, despite the venue receiving a Paycheck Protection Program loan. 

Quincy Henry roasting coffee for his business, Campfire Coffee Co.
Courtesy of Quincy Henry

Unknown numbers of businesses will die as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting economic shutdown.

But, here and there, businesses are still being born.

Jay Chohan's 13-year-old daughter, who is deaf, made a list of pros and cons of remote learning.
Courtesy of Jay Chohan

Parents of children with disabilities in the Puget Sound region say they’re very concerned about the school year to come, as many school districts announce that they’ll begin with remote instruction.

Ted S. Warren / The Associated Press

SEATTLE (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced he is tightening restrictions throughout the state in restaurants and bars, for weddings and funerals, and at gyms in a further effort to stem a surge in COVID-19 cases.

The vaccine candidate's lead investigator is Jesse Erasmus, a post-doctoral fellow of microbiology at the University of Washington School of Medicine.
Randy Carnell / UW Medicine

Researchers at the University of Washington are excited about a potential new vaccine against COVID-19. It’s an RNA vaccine that produces antibodies against COVID-19 in mice and primates.

The carefully followed death toll from COVID-19 may not fully capture the loss of life during the pandemic. Analysis of state and federal statistics for deaths from all causes shows hundreds of additional deaths above normal levels this spring in the Pacific Northwest. Some or many of those may actually be missed COVID deaths.

Adrian Florez / KNKX

 

Tammy Edwards survived COVID-19. It was miserable, but she made it. She had hoped that once the virus ran its course, she could then get back to her life and her work as a nurse in Tacoma. 

Federal guidelines suggest a typical person sick with COVID should get better after a week or two. Tammy Edwards is three months past that point, and she is still recovering. 

Lexi Walls / Veesler Lab, UW

One of the nation’s first human clinical trials testing a vaccine for the novel coronavirus is producing encouraging results, according to the Seattle-based scientists leading the study. 

Researchers at Kaiser Permanente Washington started the phase-one trial on March 16. In this early phase of developing a vaccine, researchers want to ensure mainly that it does not pose serious health risks, and that it does boost immunity. 

courtesy of Andy Mitby, commercial fisher and captain of The Ragnarok.

Washington state is receiving $50 million in CARES Act assistance to bail out its commercial seafood industry. This is the highest allocation among all state fisheries in the country -- only Alaska received as much. Yet officials are concerned it may not be enough.

Dr. Jeff Duchin, public health officer for Seattle and King County, talks to reporters, Wednesday, March 4, 2020 at a news conference in Seattle.
Ted S. Warren / The Associated Press

King County health officials say they're monitoring rising COVID-19 infections in younger people, as new cases in the Seattle area reach levels last seen during a peak this spring. 

Nearly three quarters of new cases are in people under 40 years old, King County's top public health official, Dr. Jeff Duchin, told reporters in a briefing Friday. 

Wearing a mask for protection against the coronavirus, Henry Powell, puts his groceries in his car after shopping at a Safeway store in Sacramento, Calif., Thursday, March 19, 2020.
Rich Pedroncelli / The Associated Press (file)

No mask, no service. That’s the new mantra as of Tuesday, when Gov. Jay Inslee’s latest order meant to thwart the spread of COVID-19 takes effect. It requires businesses statewide to enforce the mask mandate or risk big fines. 

The order comes in response to the resurgence in cases in numerous counties. The statewide mandate is based on one that took effect about a week ago in Yakima County.

But many front-line workers still aren’t sure how it will pan out.

Robert F. Bukaty / The Associated Press

 

As we move into the heart of our Pacific Northwest summer, families with children are facing a dilemma: what to do with kids, cooped up for months, and itching to see friends. 

COVID-19 cases are rising in Washington, but experts say it doesn’t mean kids need to stay on lockdown. 

Pierce County is losing ground against COVID-19. That’s the word from Dr. Anthony Chen, director of health for the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.

In a blog post, Chen said the county will pause its plans to advance in the state’s four-phase reopening plan. He said the move to Phase 2 also brought an increase in cases.

A man in a face mask walks through the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, Wash, Friday April 9, 2020.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Washington is among the states where COVID-19 cases are on the rise again. Over the past couple of weeks, Gov. Jay Inslee has been visiting hot spots in central and eastern parts of the state to talk about the local response.

Olympia correspondent Austin Jenkins has been covering the state's pandemic response. He talked about the latest with KNKX Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick. Listen to their conversation above or read the transcript below, which has been edited for clarity.

No crowds this year for Canada Day in Victoria, B.C., because of the pandemic. But virtual celebrations will be held.
Jordan Rockerbie / Flickr Creative Commons

July 1 is Canada Day, when the country celebrates its formation in 1867. In any given year you can find celebrations across Canada, including in Victoria, B.C., where tens of thosuands of people come to the Inner Harbour District for festivals, fireworks, and the living flag — a huge crowd in white and red T-shirts directed into the pattern of Canada’s red-and-white maple leaf flag.

Not this year, though.

Pages