About four months have passed since Washington’s statewide indoor mask mandate ended, but some local infectious disease experts and state epidemiologists are hoping recent increasing case rates will remind residents not to relax measures too much.
Statewide COVID levels had been rising since mid-March and began to show signs of leveling off in mid- to late-May, according to the state Department of Health’s COVID data dashboard. As of early July, the state recorded a seven-day case rate of about 225 infections per 100,000 people, compared to about 42 per 100,000 in March.
Much of the state’s continued high level of infection is due to the rapid pace of omicron’s BA.5 subvariant, which accounted for three times as many COVID cases at the end of June compared to the start of the month.
While King County is “actively considering” if and when additional public health requirements might be necessary, there are