Thurston, Lewis, Grays Harbor among WA counties where CDC again recommends masks

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People in six Washington counties should again wear masks indoors in public and on public transportation, according to recommendations from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The latest information from the CDC shows that Thurston, Lewis, Grays Harbor, Pacific, Garfield and Spokane counties all have COVID-19 community levels rated “high,” meaning they have had 200 or more new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people in the last seven days, or they’ve had more than 20 new COVID-19 hospital admissions per 100,000 people within a seven-day period.

KOIN-TV in Portland reported the counties range from Pacific County’s 418 cases per 100,000 people to Spokane County’s 207 cases per 100,000 people. These community levels were calculated on June 23.

The CDC said anyone at risk for severe illness in those six counties should consider taking additional precautions besides simply wearing a mask, like staying 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, and washing their hands often.

Thurston County added 616 COVID-19 cases during the week of June 20-26 as the death toll for the pandemic reached 397.

Six more county residents’ deaths due to COVID were confirmed between June 16 and 27, according to data from Public Health and Social Services. Those deaths included a woman in her 20s and a boy between 10 and 20 years old. The boy is just the second person in that age group to have died in Thurston County since the pandemic began.