The Puget Sound region may finally be turning a corner in the omicron surge.
During the Washington State Department of Health’s weekly briefing on Wednesday, Dr. Tao Kwan-Gett, the state’s chief science officer, said that “there do seem to be some signs of a slowing of a growth in cases” in recent days.
“There is some hope that we may be at or close to the peak in Western Washington,” he said. “However, we are also seeing an acceleration in the growth of cases in some parts of Eastern Washington.”
Some parts of the Puget Sound are still struggling with that as well — Skagit County is seeing a new high in case rates, with cases having doubled since last week.
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Still, the state’s biggest counties appear to be reaching the omicron peak.
Hospitalizations tend to lag behind cases, so there will likely still be a couple of weeks of growth in hospitalizations before they, too, start to drop.
But as hospitals were already stretched to the max before the omicron surge, the health care crisis and worker shortage is still expected to continue at hospitals around the region for months.
What is not as clear is the trend for deaths.
“They had been on a steady decline over the past few months, but in recent weeks, there seems to be a bit of a leveling-off,” Kwan-Gett said. “We’re not sure if this is a harbinger of a rise in deaths, which we sometimes see.”
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