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Stebbins under lockdown after recent surge in COVID-19 cases

Stebbins, Alaska, is a city in the Nome Census Area.
Stebbins, Alaska, is a city in the Nome Census Area.(AK Division of Community and Regional Affairs)
Published: Aug. 3, 2021 at 3:19 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The Norton Sound Health Corp. is reporting a surge in COVID-19 cases within the Stebbins community, which forced the village to go under lockdown last week.

The community lockdown went into effect on Thursday and will remain until 14 days pass without any new cases, the corporation said Tuesday morning.

On Monday, the corporation recorded 18 new cases in the community, pushing its active case count to 31, according to a Tuesday press release. Stebbins, which has a population of 676, had only four active cases in the village less than a week ago, according to the corporation.

Stebbins had already gone through a COVID-19 outbreak in the fall last year, which took almost two months for the village to recover from.

According to the corporation’s Tuesday press release, the Stebbins Community Association requires residents to not visit different households or other communities, and everyone is asked to wear a mask in public indoor places during the lockdown. It added that there is a 10-person limit at the local store and a five-person limit at the laundromat.

“There will be no bingo during this time, and there is a curfew of 10 p.m.,” the release said.

The corporation also reminded unvaccinated people to get vaccinated to help fight the virus outbreak and said residents can arrange vaccinations with their local clinic. Currently, 45% of Stebbins residents who are 12 and older have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 42% are fully vaccinated, according to a spokesperson for the corporation.

The region covered by the health corporation, which includes Nome and several regional villages, currently has 38 active COVID-19 cases, the release said. Five are in Nome, two in are the regional villages and 31 of the active cases are in Stebbins.

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