County Public Health Report ~ 7/05/22

The following is a summary of the presentation during the Public Health briefings at this week’s Board of County Commissioners meeting made by Jefferson and Clallam County Public Health Officer Dr. Allison Berry. Also Willie Bence, Director of Emergency Management, gave a report. The summary below was provided by and used with the permission of Jefferson County Government.

In her comments this morning to the County Commissioners, Health Officer Dr. Allison Berry reported that the first case of Avian Flu has been found in a flock of domestic fowl in Jefferson. Dr. Berry said that this strain is “unlikely to transmit to humans.” She said this is serious for birds, and poultry farmers in particular. “The best thing to do to protect your birds from contracting avian influenza is to reduce their mixing with other birds, particularly wild birds,” Dr. Berry said. “If you have a pond on your property and your birds are interacting with ducks and other migratory species—that’s where we’re seeing a lot of that infection happen.” The primary sign of avian influenza in your flock is a sudden die off of multiple birds. Dr. Berry said to watch for respiratory illness in your birds– if suddenly your birds are sneezing and coughing, that’s a typical sign that should raise suspicion. She recommends reporting any deaths to WSDA. Jefferson’s flock is 1 of 29 cases positively identified in the state.

We are adding 112 new cases this week. The two-week case rate is 715 cases per 100,000 people. Our current two-week case rate is within the high transmission risk range. At that level, it’s strongly recommended everyone wear a well-fitting, high-quality mask while in public, indoor places.

Jefferson County Public Health is streamlining its COVID-19 case data reporting as it transitions from an emergency response to a more sustainable and long-term approach to monitoring the virus. The first-ever weekly report published on Monday, June 27 and will appear every subsequent Monday. In addition to shifting to weekly reporting, data will now appear on an interactive dashboard designed with new data presentation software. Explore the dashboard on our website’s COVID-19 Case Information page.

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Allison Berry and Willie Bence by emailing [email protected]. Note: The weekly deadline for these to be submitted is on Fridays at noon, to be answered at the following Monday’s BOCC meeting.