COVID-19 Information

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The City of Mercer Island is committed to sharing up-to-date information on the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic with the community. These pages share the latest information, resources, and more.

Click on the shortcut buttons below to access the most requested information.



The City of Mercer Island is committed to sharing up-to-date information on the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic with the community. These pages share the latest information, resources, and more.

Click on the shortcut buttons below to access the most requested information.


  • What Happens When You Get a COVID-19 Test?

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    You wake up one morning with a new cough and a slight fever, and you’re not sure what to do. You’re worried it might be COVID, so what are your next steps? Getting tested is one of the best ways to protect your family, friends, and community, but if you’ve never been tested before, you might be a little nervous. Check out what really happens when you get a COVID test:

    Now that you've been tested, what do you do?

  • Support for Mercer Island BUSINESSES

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    The City is working closely with the Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce to provide information specific to businesses. As the virus spreads, some smaller establishments will be challenged by additional cleaning needs and/or reduced staffing due to quarantine concerns.

    For more information, documents, and links to useful websites visit our BUSINESS resources page.

    Wondering what RESTAURANTS are OPEN?
  • King County Data Dashboard

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    Updated October 1 - King County Public Health maintains several data dashboards that provide regular updates about COVID-19 cases and deaths, key trends and indicators of COVID-19 activity, long-term care information, and more.

    Daily Summary Dashboard

    Total cases, deaths, and demographics for the County. Zoom in on each city to get the latest local data. Updated daily between 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm. To access Mercer Island specific data, click on the City-level tab in the menu at the top of the charts. Once the City tab is open, select Mercer Island from the drop-down menu on the left-hand side of the page (see image to the right).

    Key Indicators of COVID-19 Activity Dashboard

    Key indicators and trends that track COVID-19 activity like outbreak growth, rate of hospitalization, and testing capacity. These indicators, along with other data, are key considerations for reviewing current restrictions on activity, recommendations, and precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Updated weekly on Tuesdays.

    Long-Term Care Facility Dashboard

    The data provided in the dashboard describes the impacts of COVID-19 on the residents and staff of long-term care facilities licensed by the State, including nursing homes, adult family homes, and assisted living facilities. Updated weekly on Thursdays.

    Economic, Social, and Overall Health Impacts Dashboard

    Shows changes in key economic, social, and other health indicators resulting from strategies to slow the spread of COVID-19. Updated weekly.

    Syndromic Surveillance Dashboard

    Emergency department visits and hospitalizations for COVID-like illness and pneumonia at King County healthcare facilities. Updated weekly on Wednesdays.

    Race/Ethnicity Dashboard

    Shows the impacts of COVID-19 on communities of color compared to whites in King County, WA. Updated weekly on Mondays.

    Have you ever wondered why the data changes? You've noticed the numbers are lower than the previous day? King County Public Health has answered seven of the most asked questions about their data dashboards. Check it out and see if they've answered your questions!

    Washington State COVID-19 Data Dashboard

    Looking for the latest information on state-wide case counts, epidemiologic curves, testing, hospitalizations or other information? The state has created a data dashboard complete with this information and more. Data is updated daily. Click here to visit the data dashboard.


    On March 25, Public Health—Seattle & King County launched a data dashboard that provides daily updates to COVID-19 cases and deaths. Visit www.kingcounty.gov/covid/data to see the dashboard.

    The dashboard provides data on how many people have tested positive in each city, age ranges of those who test positive or who have died, and more.

    King County will update the dashboard daily (between 1:00 and 2:00 p.m.), pending the receipt of data from key sources, including the Washington State Department of Health. The dashboard includes a timestamp of the most recent updates.

    Due to delays in reporting data from various laboratories, case totals are commonly reported two or three days later. While a graph showing the trend of COVID-19 cases may appear to be flat or declining, King County notes that we must assume that this does not actually represent a decline.

    Hover over key data points to reveal important information. A mobile version is also available.

  • If you believe you have been exposed to or have symptoms

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    March 2020: In King County, there are over 500 confirmed cases of COVID-19. We are likely to see many more cases of COVID-19 in the coming days and weeks. Symptoms of COVID-19 typically include fever, cough or shortness of breath.

    • Call your doctor – Do not go into the medical facility

    • Your doctor will make an assessment about next steps. If it is determined that you should be screened for COVID-19, your doctor will contact King County Public Health to make arrangements for screening.

    • Take all appropriate precautions. Do not go to work if you are sick. Wash your hands often and do not touch your face.

    Please stay informed and prepared. We’ll continue to keep the community updated via our website, Facebook and Twitter accounts.

    For more information, follow this link to Public Health Seattle and King County.

  • Walk Safely – Tips for Pedestrians, Bikers, and Drivers

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    The pandemic got a lot of us outside, let's make sure we're all safe as the days grow shorter.

    With the closure of gyms, malls, and just about everything else in the county, many of us took up walking for exercise or just to pass the time. As we head into the darker, winter months, it is more important than ever to be seen and stay safe while out on the road.

    Here are a few safety tips as you continue to rack up those miles:

    1. Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
    2. Walk on sidewalks. If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible.
    3. Keep alert at all times; don’t be distracted by electronic devices that take your eyes (and ears) off the road.
    4. Whenever possible, cross at crosswalks or intersections, where drivers expect pedestrians. Look for cars in all directions, including those turning left or right.
      • No crosswalk or intersection? Locate a well-lit area where you have the best view of traffic. Wait for a gap in traffic that allows enough time to cross safely; continue watching for traffic as you cross.
    5. Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers as they approach to make sure you are seen.
    6. Be visible at all times. Wear bright clothing during the day, and wear reflective materials and/or use a flashlight at night.
    7. Take special care crossing driveways.

    Drivers, don’t think we’ve forgotten about you. Here are some helpful things to do as you get behind the wheel:

    1. Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times.
    2. Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions, such as nighttime or bad weather.
    3. Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or otherwise entering a crosswalk.
    4. Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and stop well back from the cross-walk to give other vehicles an opportunity to see the crossing pedestrians so they can stop too.
    5. Never pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk.
    6. Follow the speed limit, especially around people on the street.
    7. Be extra cautious when backing up—pedestrians can move into your path.
    8. Never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

    Have you taken up biking? We have tips for you too!

  • FAQs About Face Coverings and Enforcement in Businesses

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    The Governor's Order is in effect, requiring businesses not to serve unmasked patrons (with limited exemptions). Learn more about face coverings in general from this King County FAQ, and about enforcement in businesses from the State's FAQ.

    If you think a business is not complying with Safe Start guidance, submit an anonymous report. Background: Guidelines for enforcement for the Governor's order.

  • CDC Face Covering Recommendations

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    The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) and the CDC now recommend that we wear cloth face coverings in public places where we cannot reliably stay six feet away from other people.


    From the Washington State DOH:

    Washington State is currently experiencing significant community-based transmission of COVID19. Recent information suggests that a significant portion of persons with COVID-19 may not have any symptoms, and even those who do have symptoms can transmit the infection before showing signs of illness.

    The Washington State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now recommend that people wear cloth face coverings when they are in public settings where they cannot maintain 6 feet of distance from others. This might include trips to the grocery store, pharmacy, hardware store, health clinic or similar places.

    This recommendation is not a substitute for existing guidance to maintain 6-feet of physical distance from non-household members and performing frequent hand hygiene with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Wearing cloth face coverings will not prevent spread of COVID-19 without these other protective measures.

    This is not a mandate that you must wear a face covering. It is considered an additional layer of protection.

    Guidance

    Our best community and individual defense against COVID-19 is: 

    • Performing frequent hand hygiene, 
    • Avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands, 
    • Avoiding being around sick people, and 
    • Practicing social distancing, especially by staying at home.

    If you wear a face covering, wash your hands before and after touching and adjusting the mask. It is critical that this guidance does not put increased demand on medical grade masks, such as N95 respirators and surgical masks. This guidance is for cloth face coverings only. A strong health care delivery system and emergency response system is also an essential core defense to save lives when people do get ill.

    For more information see the Washington State DOH's full recommendation: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Portals/1/Documents/1600/coronavirus/ClothFacemasks.pdf

  • King County Moves to Phase 2 Beginning February 1

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    Roadmap to Recovery update; Two regions to move into Phase 2

    On Thursday, January 28, the DOH announced that based on Governor Jay Inslee’s updated Roadmap to Recovery phased reopening plan, the Puget Sound and West regions will move into Phase 2 beginning Monday, February 1.

    In Phase 2, restrictions on most activities are relaxed, slightly. Restaurants (and bars with food) can have indoor dining at 25% capacity, and gyms/fitness also can operate at 25% capacity (appointments not necessarily required). See the image below for more details.

    As Governor Inslee just announced, regions now need to meet any three of the four metrics outlined in the Roadmap to Recovery plan in order to move into Phase 2. The four metrics have not changed and include:

    1. Trend in 14-day rate of new COVID-19 cases per 100k population
    2. Trend in 14-day rate of new COVID-19 hospital admissions per 100k population
    3. Average 7-day percent occupancy of ICU staffed beds
    4. 7-day percent positive of COVID-19 tests

    In addition, DOH will calculate regions’ metric to determine phase status every two weeks from now on.

    DOH is releasing region status today to coincide with the Governor’s announcements. Going forward, DOH will reassess the metrics for all eight (8) regions every two weeks and announce any phase adjustments on Fridays. The next announcement will be Friday, February 12, 2021.

    The following regions will remain in in Phase 1:

    • East
    • South Central
    • North Central
    • Northwest
    • Southwest
    • North

    Phase changes will go into effect on Monday, February 1, 2021 and remain in effect until Monday, February 15, 2021.

    For more information visit the Roadmap to Recovery dashboard.

  • News for the Week of January 25

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    News highlights for the week of January 25.

    Latest Numbers. DOH reported a total of 293,978 confirmed cases as of January 27. There have been 4,243 COVID-19 deaths in WA. In Mercer Island, there have been 435 positive cases reported as of January 28. For that latest city and county data, click here.

    Headlines

    King County Moves to Phase 2 Beginning Feb. 1. On Thursday, January 28, the DOH announced that based on Governor Jay Inslee’s updated phased reopening plan, the Puget Sound region will move into Phase 2 beginning Monday, February 1. In Phase 2, restrictions on most activities are relaxed, slightly. Restaurants (and bars with food) can have indoor dining at 25% capacity, and gyms/fitness also can operate at 25% capacity (appointments not necessarily required). Click here for more Phase 2 details.

    New "Roadmap to Recovery" dashboard. The State DOH, in partnership with Microsoft AI for Health, has launched the new Roadmap to Recovery dashboard that provides a detailed overview of the metrics used for measuring regional progress in the Governor’s “Roadmap to Recovery” phased reopening plan. The dashboard provides a state-wide view as well as regional data. Click this link to view the dashboard.

    New COVID-19 Testing Requirements for All Air Passengers Arriving in the United States. If you plan to travel internationally, you will need to get tested no more than 3 days before you travel by air into the United States. You will need to show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight, or be prepared to show documentation of recovery. This can be proof of a recent positive viral test and a letter from your healthcare provider or a public health official stating that you were cleared to travel. Click here for more.

    Public-private vaccination effort. On Tuesday, the DOH announced the appointment of Mr. Dan Laster as Director of the COVID-19 Vaccine Action Command and Coordination System (VACCS) Center to create public-private partnerships. Microsoft, Starbucks, Kaiser Permanente, SeaMar, and SEIU 1199 agreed to partner with the state to support the vaccine distribution efforts. Full press release here.

    FDA: “Beware of alcohol-based sanitizers from Mexico.” The U.S. FDA has issued an alert on alcohol-based sanitizers from Mexico: many have been found to contain a toxic substance known as methanol (wood alcohol). Check your hand sanitizer. Stop using it immediately if it's on this list: http://bit.ly/sanitizeralert

    Video Update from the City Manager. At the February 2 City Council meeting, City Manager Jessi Bon will provide an update to the Council and community. Tune in at 5:00pm on the Council’s YouTube Channel to watch the update or view it on MI-TV Channel 21.

    Situation Reports. The City has moved to monthly Situation Reports (SitReps), available the first Friday of the month. The next SitRep will be available the afternoon of February 5. Click here to catch up on the latest information and reports.

    Information for Businesses

    Free safety supplies for restaurants and bars in King County. The Safe Start for Taverns and Restaurants (SSTAR) program continues its mobile outreach to provide free supplies for food establishments including facemasks, gloves, thermometer, hand sanitizer, disinfecting solutions, posters and educational materials. Upcoming giveaway events include:

    Farmers Market COVID-19 Plan Requirements updated. The plan for Farmers Market Coordinators, includes information on on how the market will control for health screening, social distancing and sanitation. Click here for more info.

    Paycheck Protection Program resumed. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SB), in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, reopened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for First Draw PPP Loans the week of Jan. 11. SBA began accepting applications for Second Draw PPP Loans on Jan. 13. You can find more information regarding application requirements and technical guidance on the Washington State Department of Commerce’s website and the U.S. Small Business Administration’s COVID-19 business relief page.

    Vaccine News

    Understanding mRNA COVID-19 Vaccines. Messenger RNA vaccines—also called mRNA vaccines—are some of the first COVID-19 vaccines authorized for use in the United States. COVID-19 mRNA vaccines give instructions for cells to make a harmless piece of the so-called "spike protein”, which the virus uses to enter cells in the body. After the protein piece is made, the cell breaks down the instructions and gets rid of them. The immune system recognizes that the protein doesn’t belong there and begins making antibodies to protect against future infection. People who get vaccinated gain this protection without having to risk the serious consequences of getting sick with COVID-19. Click here for more.

    King County COVID-19 Vaccine Data At-a-Glance. Page updated daily here.

    Washington COVID-19 vaccine distribution hits 500,000 total doses administered. Gov. Jay Inslee today announced progress toward the state’s goal of administering 45,000 vaccine doses a day. As of Monday, the state’s current seven-day rolling average was 23,960 doses administered. The governor also announced a record number of COVID-19 vaccines administered in a 24-hour period, with around 40,000 doses reported as of Monday. Washington also officially passed 500,000 vaccine doses administered and reported. Click here to continue reading.

    Four mass vaccination sites open statewide this week. The DOH, with assistance from the Washington National Guard and local and private sector partners, is launching four mass vaccination sites throughout the state this week in Kennewick, Ridgefield, Spokane and Wenatchee. Click here for information on mass vaccination sites.

    Statement on crossing state lines for vaccine. Given the limited supply of vaccine that is available at this time and our state’s commitment to equitable and fair access to vaccine, the state is requiring that those seeking COVID-19 vaccines in its four mass vaccination sites must either live or work in Washington state. People who register for vaccines at these four sites may be asked to provide one of the following: driver's license or work/school ID; letter with your address, utility bill; statement/letter with a Washington state address; or voucher from an employer, faith-based institution, health care provider, school, or other registered organization or agency, etc. that the person lives or works in Washington state. The vaccine site will not make a copy or record this information in any way. This is only to show that the person currently resides or works in Washington state. Click here for more.

  • News for the Week of January 18

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    News highlights for the week of January 18.

    State Opens COVID Vaccinations To Phase 1b. On Monday, January 18, Gov. Inslee announced that all older adults in Washington state over the age of 65 are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. People 50 and older who live in multigenerational households are also eligible if they meet certain conditions. Learn more about the expanded vaccine eligibility guidance. Collectively, these groups are known as Phase 1b - Tier 1. Due to limited supply of vaccine, not everyone will be able to access a vaccine right away, and you may experience delays due to the very high volume of inquiries. Access will improve as the supply chain widens and providers across King County receive more doses. Mobile vaccination teams are also reaching out to highest risk older adults, including those residing in adult family homes. Larger retirement homes and assisted living facilities already have vaccination programs underway.

    How to Get Vaccinated

    At this time, Public Health – Seattle & King County (PHSKC) recommends the following options if you believe you are currently eligible.

    • Call your doctor’s office or health care provider
    • Or use Washington State’s new online Phase Finder tool
    • Or call the State COVID Hotline at 1-800-525-0127

    COVID-19 in Washington State: One Year Later. The first case of COVID-19 was announced in Washington state on January 21, 2020. This was the first time anyone had detected novel coronavirus in the United States. This day marked the beginning of our state’s response. Click here for the full article.

    Inslee extends 26 proclamations relating to COVID-19. Gov. Jay Inslee issued extensions of 26 emergency proclamations, which were extended by the Legislature on January 15 with the passage of Senate Concurrent Resolution 8402. Read more here.

    Job search requirements continue to be suspended during pandemic. The State Legislature voted to continue the suspension of job search requirements until the State of Emergency is withdrawn. This means you can continue to answer “no” to the job search question on your weekly claim until the suspension is lifted. Read more here.

    Video Update from the City Manager. On January 19, the City Council meeting, City Manager Jessi Bon provided an update to the Council and community. Watch the update here.

    January 22 Situation Report. For highlights and information from the 46th week of the City’s response to the pandemic click here. Note: The City is moving to one SitRep a month beginning in February. The January 22 report will be the final SitRep for January. Next report will be published on February 5.

    Vaccine News

    When is it your turn to get the COVID-19 vaccine? The COVID-19 vaccine is here. The vaccine is one of the best strategies we have now to protect ourselves and our loved ones from the virus that defined 2020. Eventually every adult and teen in Washington who wants the vaccine will be able to get one this year, but, for now, there is a limited supply. Read more about the vaccine roll out here.

    King County COVID-19 Vaccine Data At-a-Glance. Page updated daily here.

    Vaccine distribution update from the DOH. On January 13, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) shared key updates on our COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration efforts. Click here for the release.

    Washington's new vaccine dashboard will offer new window into progress. The state, in partnership with Microsoft AI for Health, announced a new vaccine data tab now available on the DOH dada dashboard. Check out the latest state-wide data here.

    What to Expect After Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you from getting COVID-19. You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. Click here for common side effects and more.

    School News

    MISD Hybrid In-Person Learning Timeline. MISD welcomed back first graders to in-person learning on Tuesday and kindergarteners began hybrid learning the week of January 4. The MISD hybrid learning schedule has grades 2-3 returning to in-person learning the week of February 8. For more on the schedule visit the Learning Forward page at www.mercerislandschools.org/learningforward.

    Updated message from Public Health regarding return to in-person learning. Feelings of fear and uncertainty in response to planning for expanded in-person instruction during the pandemic are very real for many people, and understandable given the unfamiliar and evolving nature of the COVID-19 outbreak. Click here for the full message from Dr. Jeff Duchin.

    Updated guidance documents for King County Schools COVID-19 Response Toolkit. Public Health has developed the King County Schools COVID-19 Response Toolkit to support schools as they reopen for in-person instruction. This guidance is intended to supplement State guidance and resources with local contact tracing and COVID-19 response guidance. Click here for more info.

    COVID-19 Reporting

    Latest numbers. The Department of Health reported a total of 283,188 confirmed cases as of 11:59 pm on January 20. There have been 4,065 COVID-19 deaths in Washington. In Mercer Island, there have been 421 positive cases reported as of January 21. For that latest city and county data, click here.

Page last updated: 14 Apr 2022, 01:11 PM