First Covid-19 cases in Point Roberts

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Point Roberts has notched its first cases of Covid-19. The first individual who tested positive had recently returned home from a congregate setting in Bellingham; another person in the same household subsequently tested positive as well. The first case was extensively reported north of the border on Thursday.

According to fire chief Christopher Carleton, those individuals notified people they had been in contact with, who in turn, contacted others. The fire department held an emergency Covid-19 testing clinic on Wednesday; expecting around 20 people, they ended up testing 57. There were no positive results other than the first individual and the family member. “It was two positives in the same household and not multiple households,” said Carleton.

“There is a plan in place to help them in their quarantine and there is no need for others in the community to worry,” he said, adding, “We will be delivering groceries and whatever is needed to the two individuals.”

Carleton said the pandemic was bound to come here at some point, “People need to re-think and come back to vigilance about Covid-19. People have been relaxing their guards and need to be more careful.”

The district is holding its regular Covid-19 testing on Sunday, February 14 from 10 a.m. until noon or later if necessary.

Both Carleton and hospital district superintendent Barbara Wayland have some tentatively good news in regard to getting the vaccination program underway in Point Roberts. Carleton told the All Point Bulletin that he’s been informed that they could possibly be getting around 70 doses next week and could begin vaccinating. In a public notice sent today, Wayland advised that the state department of health (DOH) has said the vaccine will arrive about 10 days after it is ordered and SuperTrack would be notified once it was on its way. The clinic placed its order today, February 12.

Once the clinic receives that notification, it will email everyone who submitted contact information in an ongoing survey posted by the fire district at surveymonkey.com/r/B8N2V5W.

The district has received well over 500 responses to date and will be responding in order of the criteria established by the state DOH. Those in groups 1a and 1b will be called in order based on the number of available doses. Group 1b are individuals 65 years and older and those 50 or older who are living in multi-generational households. Grandparents living with grandchildren would qualify; parents with children wouldn’t. Readers can determine their phase by going to bit.ly/3tW9U8U.

Carleton said people should be patient with the vaccination process. “We will be vaccinating everybody as fast as we can and we will not waste a single dose.” He anticipates that the clinic and district will use a vehicle drive-through process to maximize throughput and efficiency.

Wayland said an email would be sent out to people beforehand with a DOH form that can be filled out in advance to be submitted at the time of vaccination. The form will be available on-site that can be filled out in people’s vehicle as they await their turn.

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