City of Sammamish COVID-19 Information & Resources

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Please note that King County Public Health should remain your primary source of information on the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak. Please check out their COVID-19 Data Dashboards for the latest statistics. To see recent news on this page, click here.

For the latest Washington State-level COVID-19 health guidance, statistics and resources, visit Coronavirus.wa.gov.

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 (formerly known as the “novel coronavirus”) is a new virus strain spreading from person-to-person.

How does COVID-19 spread?

  • Through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes
  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet)
  • By touching

Please note that King County Public Health should remain your primary source of information on the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak. Please check out their COVID-19 Data Dashboards for the latest statistics. To see recent news on this page, click here.

For the latest Washington State-level COVID-19 health guidance, statistics and resources, visit Coronavirus.wa.gov.

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 (formerly known as the “novel coronavirus”) is a new virus strain spreading from person-to-person.

How does COVID-19 spread?

  • Through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes
  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet)
  • By touching a surface or object with the virus and then touching the mouth, nose, or eyes

What are the symptoms?

People who have been diagnosed with novel coronavirus have reported symptoms that may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus. Those symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, and/or difficulty breathing.

Who is most vulnerable?

People at higher risk include those:

  • Over 60 years of age
  • With underlying health conditions including include heart disease, asthma or other lung disease, or diabetes
  • With weakened immune systems
  • Who are pregnant

Anyone who has questions about whether their condition puts them at risk for severe COVID-19 illness should consult with their healthcare providers. Be sure to call your provider before going to the office in person.

What is the City of Sammamish doing?

On March 3rd, the City of Sammamish activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in response to the coronavirus outbreak and formed an internal COVID-19 Task Force. The operational objectives of the City were to:

  • Adopt and widely promote the below Non-Pharmaceutical Intervention recommendations (NPIs) from the WA State Public Health Agency; and
  • Update Continuity of Government/Operations Plan for pandemic response to ensure continuity of all essential government functions while protecting the health and welfare of City personnel; and
  • Provide clear public information that directs to or is consistent with State and Local Public Health messaging regarding the outbreak and protective actions.

On March 5, the City of Sammamish issued a proclamation of local emergency in order to support measures to be taken to protect public health, safety and welfare within the City. This declaration was approved by City Council at their March 10 meeting. The full proclamation is available here, and the press release can be found here.

The City of Sammamish Emergency Manager continues to participate in daily conference calls with the King County Office of Emergency Management, Public Health - Seattle & King County, jurisdictions from across the region, and community stakeholders, to facilitate the regional coordination of information and resources.

COVID-19 is an active situation that changes daily. The City of Sammamish is proactively working to mitigate the impacts from COVID-19 on our community. This portal will continually be updated to provide up-to-date information and resources to assist you through the coronavirus outbreak.

  • Inslee announces two-week pause on phases

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    Gov. Jay Inslee today announced a two-week pause on movement in the Healthy Washington: Roadmap to Recovery reopening plan. Under the pause, every county will remain in its current phase. At the end of two weeks, each county will be re-evaluated.

    The decision was made in consultation with the Department of Health, and reflects current data suggesting Washington’s fourth wave has hit a plateau.

    “We are at the intersection of progress and failure, and we cannot veer from the path of progress,” Inslee said Tuesday. “Our economy is beginning to show early signs of growth thanks to some of our great legislative victories and we know vaccines are the ticket to further reopening — if we adhere to public health until enough people are vaccinated.”

    For the past several weeks, epidemiologists have been following the state’s fourth COVID-19 wave, which now appears to be leveling out. The fourth wave has been less severe and case counts and mortalities have not been tied in rates of increase as they have in the past.

    The changes in data throughout the fourth wave have been attributed to increasing vaccination rates, shortening hospital stays and lessening the severity of the illness. The state’s early vaccine prioritization has also been tied to improved data and decreasing mortality rates in the state’s most vulnerable populations.

    Vaccines are now available to all Washingtonians 16 and up. To find an appointment, visit VaccineLocator.doh.wa.gov.

    Read the rest of the story on the governor's Medium page.

  • Snoqualmie Tribe Vaccine Partnership to Supply Vaccines for Eligible Eastside Residents Living on Snoqualmie Tribal Ancestral Lands

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    The cities of Issaquah and Sammamish with Eastside Fire & Rescue have been working together for the past few months to bring COVID-19 vaccinations to East King County residents. Now, the establishment of the first community-based mass vaccination site on the Eastside is made possible through a partnership with the Snoqualmie Tribe. As a sovereign nation, the Snoqualmie Tribe is providing the vaccine necessary to turn the planned the mass vaccination site at Lake Sammamish State Park into a reality.

    The Snoqualmie Tribe’s Vaccine Clinic, which first opened on the Snoqualmie Tribal Reservation in February, will now operate at the Lake Sammamish State Park site. The mass vaccination site will be named the Snoqualmie Tribe Vaccine Partnership and will open on April 12, 2021.

    Vaccines will be available to individuals with an appointment only. Individuals must meet the current vaccine eligibility requirements as defined by Washington State Department of Health. Snoqualmie Tribal Members, Tribal Staff, and members of their household will continue to be eligible for appointments at the new clinic location. The mobile vaccination unit operated by Eastside Fire & Rescue will still be making visits to senior citizens and other vulnerable populations who may not be able to access the vaccination site.

    “The Snoqualmie Tribe is proud to be able to provide these vaccines to individuals living in the Snoqualmie Tribe’s ancestral lands. In the 1860’s, the Snoqualmie people and other Northwest Natives experienced great loss as white settlers adopted a smallpox vaccine policy that discriminated against Natives,” said Robert De Los Angeles, Snoqualmie Tribal Chairman. “Now, the Snoqualmie Tribe is exercising sovereignty through our Tribal values by caring for the people and communities living on our ancestral lands 160 years later during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

    “The Snoqualmie Tribe Vaccine Partnership is an amazing story of just that – a successful partnership,” said Issaquah Mayor Mary Lou Pauly. “Issaquah and Sammamish, along with numerous private and public partners, worked tirelessly to bring a community-based vaccination site to the Eastside. However, with vaccines in short supply, we had limited options. We are forever grateful for Snoqualmie Tribe’s partnership and care for our communities and look forward to educating our residents about the tribe’s deep history on these ancestral lands.”

    “Our commitment from Sammamish is to continue the respectful partnership between our city and the Snoqualmie Tribe. We want to honor what the Snoqualmie Tribe has brought to our communities, not only in the form of vaccines, but also your culture, your history, your legacy, and your lands. We are so grateful to the Snoqualmie Tribe for this partnership, it will truly help save lives,” said Mayor Karen Moran of the City of Sammamish.

    “Eastside Fire & Rescue has been working with the Snoqualmie Tribe since 2015, when the Tribe contracted EF&R to provide fire and EMS services on the Snoqualmie Reservation. It is an honor to be able to partner with the Tribe on vaccination efforts for their community and now the broader Eastside,” said Fire Chief Jeff Clark.

    The mass vaccination site will be administered by Eastside Fire & Rescue personnel and trained volunteers and will follow all COVID-19 guidelines and protocols. The site is designed to accommodate two rows of cars with the potential of vaccinating up to 300 persons a day, depending on vaccine supply. There will be no walk-up or waitlists available at the site. More information, including appointments, eligibility, and how to volunteer is available at: snoqualmievaccine.snoqualmietribeweb.us.

    # # #

    About the Snoqualmie Tribe

    The Snoqualmie Indian Tribe is a federally recognized tribe in the Puget Sound region of Washington State. Known as the People of the Moon, Snoqualmie were signatories to the Treaty of Point Elliott in 1855 and hold reserved Treaty rights under the Treaty. Tribal enterprises provide over 1,700 jobs in the Snoqualmie Valley, and the Snoqualmie Tribe has donated more than $10 million to nonprofit organizations in Washington State since 2010.

    About Issaquah

    Issaquah, named Best Burb by Sunset, one of the Best Towns for Families by Family Circle and one of the Best Towns by Outside, is a great place for residents and visitors alike. Our community of more than 37,000 is conveniently located off the Interstate 90 corridor, just 16 miles east of Seattle. Issaquah — nicknamed Trailhead City — is centered within the Issaquah Alps (Cougar, Squak and Tiger mountains), and is a destination for countless outdoor enthusiasts, including hikers and paragliders.

    About Sammamish

    Sammamish is a vibrant bedroom community blessed with a well-preserved natural environment, and a family-friendly, kid-safe culture. From its expanding tree canopy, to its peaceful neighborhoods, to its multi-modal transportation resources, Sammamish captures the best of the past even as it embraces a burgeoning digital future.

    About Eastside Fire & Rescue

    Eastside Fire & Rescue proudly serves the communities of Issaquah, North Bend, Sammamish, Carnation, Preston, May Valley, Wilderness Rim, and Tiger Mountain. The Agency provides high quality fire, rescue and emergency medical services.

  • Inslee announces extension of eviction moratorium, expansion of vaccine eligibility, long-term care visitations may resume

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    Reprinted from Governor Jay Inslee's Medium page (March 18, 2021)

    Gov. Jay Inslee today announced that the statewide eviction moratorium will be extended through June 30, as well as upcoming vaccine eligibility expansion, including restaurant workers and Washingtonians 60 and older. He also announced that effective immediately, visitations at long-term care facilities and nursing homes may resume.

    In addition, the state Department of Health (DOH) today launched a new web tool to help people find open vaccination appointments near them.

    Eviction moratorium extension

    The governor announced that the statewide eviction moratorium will be extended through June 30, 2021. The moratorium, first put in place exactly a year ago today, has been vital protection for families struggling with the persistent economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “The pandemic’s economic toll continues to burden many Washingtonians, particularly tenants,” Inslee said during a press conference Thursday. “People need these supports right now. There is no other way to look at it.”


    Since the moratorium was first instituted, hundreds of millions of dollars have gone toward rental assistance — for both tenants and landlords. Additional rental assistance will be available through the recently passed American Rescue Plan Act from the federal government.

    The governor signed two additional related proclamations yesterday; one relating to utility shutoffs and the other focusing on debt garnishment. Under the new proclamations, the utility shutoff moratorium is extended through July 31, and debt garnishment on federal pandemic payments is still prohibited.

    Find the extended eviction moratorium proclamation here.

    Please read the rest of the article here: https://medium.com/wagovernor/inslee-announces-extension-of-eviction-moratorium-expansion-of-vaccine-eligibility-long-term-635b34eb0ca

  • Emergency Manager's Report to City Council on COVID-19 (March 16, 2021)

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    Andrew Stevens, CEM - Emergency Manager, Eastside Fire & Rescue

    Good evening Mayor, Council members, and City Manager.

    I would like to focus my report this evening on the COVID-19 vaccine, its availability, and our continued efforts to provide greater access to vaccine for residents of Eastside communities.

    Right now, our only available metric for populations who have had access to the COVID-19 vaccine is through the statistical dashboards provided by King County Public Health, which can be broken down by zip codes. As of earlier today here is what those dashboards were telling us.

    • Among residents living in 98074 – 117.6% of those aged 75 and more have received at least one dose, 108% of those aged 65 and over have received one or more doses, and 26.8% of those aged 16+ have received one or more doses.
    • Among residents living in 98075 – 108.9% of those aged 75 and more have received at least one dose, 93.6% of those aged 65 and over have received one or more doses, and 28.4% of those aged 16+ have received one or more doses.
    • Among residents living in 98029, which includes Klahanie but also a large portion of Issaquah – 91.1% of those aged 75 and more have received at least one dose, 89.3% of those aged 65 and over have received one or more doses, and 26.8% of those aged 16+ have received one or more doses.

    As you can tell, there may be discrepancies in the statistics that are being reported, represented by those overages, or our current population is simply greater than the baseline numbers that the County is using. What I can say is that if you are 65 and over and have yet to access a vaccine please let Eastside Fire and Rescue know. Our mobile vaccination teams are still serving populations within our service area and while who we can directly schedule and deploy vaccine to is limited to only those populations the County approves, sometimes we are left with additional doses and we can put you on a stand-by list. If residents meet that criteria and would like to be placed on this list, please email COVID@esf-r.org.

    Regarding the establishment of a mass vaccination site here on the Eastside, I am happy to report that the site is fully constructed and ready to go over at Lake Sammamish State Park. Unfortunately, King County is still unwilling to provide a dedicated allocation of vaccines citing both vaccine availability and a focus on more vulnerable populations in other regions of the County.

    While I understand the limitations of the vaccine supply chain, our hope is that having a drive-through site capable of providing 500+ vaccines each day already built, funded, and staffed independent of County resources will encourage King County Public Health to provide vaccine as soon as more becomes available. With additional tiers of vaccine-eligible persons opening tomorrow, we are very aware that our residents who become eligible to receive a vaccine will most likely struggle greatly in their ability to access one or find that appointments are already booked out for weeks to come.

    With the State entering Phase 3 next week, we are also very aware of the fact that with restrictions lessening around restaurants, sporting events, and outdoor and indoor gatherings, there will be more and more chances for exposure both for those participating in these activities, but also the frontline workers at these venues, who, even if they are eligible to receive a vaccine as of tomorrow, will most likely be unable to for quite some time.

    Therefore, we are going to continue to pressure King County Public Health for a dedicated allocation of vaccines at the Lake Sammamish drive-through site so that all eligible Eastside residents have the same opportunity and access as residents of Seattle or southern King County. I believe it will take the continued advocacy of city leadership, elected officials, as well as our own residents to ensure that an Eastside mass vaccination site is supported. Hopefully, through those efforts, we will see the Lake Sammamish site operational and providing vaccines to our residents in the very near future.

    With that, I would be happy to answer any questions you may have. Thank you.

  • Inslee announces statewide move to Phase 3 of recovery plan, return to spectator events and Phase 1B, Tier 2 vaccine eligibility

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    Reprinted from Governor Inslee's Medium page:

    Gov. Jay Inslee today announced that Healthy Washington: Roadmap to Recovery will be transitioning from a regional approach to a county-by-county evaluation process. The governor also announced a new third phase of the Roadmap and a return for in-person spectators for professional and high school sports.

    Effective March 22, the entire state will enter Phase 3.

    “Because of the progress we’ve made by decreasing our case rates and hospitalizations, as well as our tremendous efforts to get more people vaccinated, our reopening plan is once again based on counties, not regions,” Inslee said during a press conference Thursday. “We are excited to take this step and we will keep evaluating our progress, and the impacts of these changes, to determine how and when we reopen further.”

    Additionally, the governor announced that starting Wednesday, March 17, everyone in Phase 1B, Tier 2 will be eligible for their COVID vaccine. This includes workers in agriculture, food processing, grocery stores, public transit, firefighters and law enforcement, among others. Phase 1B, Tier 2 also includes people over the age of 16 who are pregnant or have a disability that puts them at high-risk.

    Metrics

    Under the updated plan, counties will be individually evaluated every three weeks. The evaluations will occur on Mondays with any possible changes taking effect Friday, with the first evaluation scheduled for April 12.

    In addition to being individually evaluated, large and small counties will have different sets of criteria. If any county fails one or more of the metrics below, that county will move down one Phase in the Heathy Washington plan.


    For large counties to remain in Phase 3, defined as counties with more than 50,000 residents, they must keep a 14-day average of new COVID cases at or below 200 per 100,000 residents, and a seven-day average of new hospitalizations per 100,000 at five or fewer.

    Smaller counties, those with populations of 50,000 or less, must maintain a 14-day average of new cases at 30 or fewer, and a new seven-day hospitalization average at three or fewer.

    If at any point the statewide ICU capacity reaches greater than 90%, all counties will move down one Phase. The Department of Health always maintains the ability to move a county forward or backward at their discretion.

    “We know there is enthusiasm around opening of schools and businesses and that advancing to Phase 3 is welcome news to many Washingtonians,” said Lacy Fehrenbach, Deputy Secretary for the Department of Health’s COVID-19 response. “We want to keep going forward together out of the pandemic, and our success hinges upon wearing masks, washing our hands, watching our distance, keeping social circles small — and of course, getting vaccinated when it’s our turn. These are the things that will help us suppress COVID-19, which is the key to our continued forward progress towards recovery.”

    Phase 3

    Sports guidance will change in Phase 3 to allow in-person spectators at events for the first time in a year. Spectators will be allowed to attend outdoor venues with permanent seating with capacity capped at 25%. The change affects both professional and high school sports, as well as motorsports, rodeos, and other outdoor spectator events. Social distancing and facial covering are still required.

    The new phase also allows for up to 400 people maximum to attend outdoor activities, as well as events in indoor facilities — so long as 400 people does not exceed 50% capacity for the location, and physical distancing and masking protocols are enforced. Larger venue events are capped at 25% occupancy, or up to 9,000 people, whichever is less, and must follow spectator guidelines.

    Additionally, Phase 3 will allow up to 50% occupancy or 400 people maximum, whichever is lower, for all indoor spaces. This applies to all industries and indoor activities currently allowed; restaurants, gyms and fitness centers and movie theaters, among others, may all increase their capacity.

    “Some of the hardest hit businesses in Washington will be able to return to 50% capacity as we continue on the road to recovery,” Inslee said. “On March 22, we make one more step to beating this virus and rejuvenating our economy.”

    A full list of industry-level changes for the new phase will be released next week.

  • Emergency Manager's Report to City Council on COVID-19 (March 2, 2021)

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    Andrew Stevens, CEM - Emergency Manager - Eastside Fire & Rescue

    Good evening Mayor, Councilmembers, and City Manager.

    Since my last update to Council, the United States surpassed a grim milestone in its fight against COVID-19, half a million deaths. The sheer magnitude of that number and the loss of life it represents is almost incomprehensible. Today, the U.S. is registering over 516,000 deaths, roughly a fifth of the global death total of 2.5 million. The US has had 27.8 million positive cases with daily case counts still averaging close to 70k new confirmed cases each day. This is a considerable decrease from the numbers experienced through the winter surge, but a strong reminder that high levels of community spread still exists in most pockets of the county.

    Locally, King County has registered 82,363 positive cases and 1,399 deaths. A survey of the most populated counties in the U.S. showed that King County had the second-lowest COVID case count, with only Oahu County having fewer. Sammamish is registering 1050 cases and 13 fatalities.

    Even with three FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccines available, vaccine access and shortages continue to be a serious shortfall in the response efforts. Vaccine began being administered back in December, but as of today only 18.5% of King County residents have received one dose, and 10.7% have received both doses. King County has established vaccination sites in both Auburn and Kent, however, you must be a resident of South King County to schedule an appointment there. Seattle has recently announced that several sites will be available. The first two sites currently open are at Rainier Beach and West Seattle, are not open to the public for open registration, and are currently only administering 1000 doses a week. Later in the month, Seattle is hoping to stand up a larger mass vaccination site located at Lumen Field, which initially will be delivering 5,000 doses each week, with the expectation that these numbers will increase as vaccines become more available.

    Eastside Fire and Rescue has been continuing our mobile vaccination team program, targeting adult family homes, nursing homes, and low-income senior living housing. We have been working with human services personnel to identify and assist in scheduling the mobile teams, but we are currently restricted to serving only the populations identified and approved by King County Public Health. Our teams have also been assisting the Snoqualmie Tribe and are conducting mass vaccination support to weekly clinics inoculating tribal members.

    As you are aware, we have also been pursuing standing up a mass vaccination site here on the Eastside. We recently secured an agreement with WA State Parks to host the drive-through vaccination site at Lake Sammamish State Park. Later this week we will begin building out the location with the hope that King County Public Health will begin to dedicate an allocation of the vaccine as it becomes available. Discussions with the county lead us to believe that we will be provided vaccine for the location in early April. That being said, the site will be established and ready to operate if vaccine doses are secured earlier. Once operational, the site will be able to support 500 to 1000 vaccines each day.

    The County’s current strategy is to focus vaccine operations in geographic locations where COVID-19 infection rates were highest and greater numbers of vulnerable populations reside. The data for vaccines administered is provided by King County Public Health. However, King County Public Health’s data dashboards do not break down vaccine dose information by individual jurisdictions, and Sammamish is grouped together into the larger East King County data set. As of today, the percentage of East King County residents over the age of 75 who have received one dose is 76.2%, the percentage for eligible individuals over 65 equals 67.1%. The proportion of all residents aged 16 and over who have been inoculated in East King County is only 16.9% though, the fourth lowest number out of the 10 regions King County Public Health is tracking. Today, Governor Inslee announced that that PreK-12 educators, school staff, and licensed childcare providers are now eligible for the vaccine under Phase 1B1. While this is great news to those individuals, opening up additional categories of eligible recipients will most certainly add to the struggle of accessing vaccines for those who were able to receive a vaccination but could not secure an appointment.

    For residents seeking information on vaccine availability, state or local COVID-19 updates, or links to resources that may be able to provide additional assistance, I urge them all to visit the City’s Connect Sammamish COVID-19 portal. There you will find links to vaccine information and the WA Vaccine Location Map. Also, for those residents having trouble navigating the online system, King County has established a COVID Assistance Call Center which is open 8 am to 7 pm. That number is 206-477-3977.

    Lastly, I wanted to provide an update on COVID-19 expenses. To date, the City has spent roughly $2.15 million of the $2.9 million that was reimbursed to the City by the CARES Act, leaving roughly $750,000. That includes roughly $189K on internal COVID-19 expenses, $215K on expenses necessary to ensure continuity of government, $1,211,000 in two rounds of small business and non-profit grants, and $525K to support human service organizations assisting those impacted.

    With that, I would be happy to address any questions you may have. Thank you.

  • Emergency Manager's Report to City Council on COVID-19 (February 16, 2021)

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    Andrew Stevens, CEM - Emergency Manager - Eastside Fire & Rescue

    Good evening Mayor, Council members, and City Manager.

    I would like to take the first minute of this report to step away from COVID and touch on the fantastic response by the City’s Maintenance and Operations crews, who over the holiday weekend, worked around the clock to mitigate the impacts of the winter storm. I would also like to thank the City’s communications team for providing continual updates on road and weather conditions, as well as safety tips for winter driving and recreation. Lastly, I would like to thank the residents of Sammamish for limiting all unnecessary travel which assisted in the City’s ability to service the roadways. The storm did not result in any major incidents or damages, but it is a reminder to all that severe winter weather can certainly impact the region, and that preparedness for such events begins with the individual.

    Regarding COVID, I think the topic on everyone’s mind is the lack of access to vaccine. Over the past several weeks, I know that many of you have been personally contacted by individuals who qualify to receive a COVID-19 vaccine but cannot secure a reservation. While I understand the frustrations of every single one of those individuals, I would like to highlight that this is not a problem specific to Sammamish, King County, or even WA. This is a global problem of extremely high demand for an extremely limited amount of available vaccine. While it will not bring comfort to those still seeking vaccine, I would like to highlight that while the State of WA has administered over 1 million COVID-19 vaccinations, there are 130 countries that have yet to administer a single dose. That is a huge concern because this is not an American problem but a global pandemic.

    While the vaccine availability is not what many expected, the numerous public and private partners involved in these efforts are all forging ahead and making progress, and every day more vaccines are finding their way into the arms of the most vulnerable. As I briefed two weeks ago, the County has also begun operations of two mass vaccination sites, in the cities of Auburn and Kent. These sites are delivering roughly 500 vaccines per day and can scale up to accommodate greater capacity as time goes on and access to vaccine becomes greater. Another site stood up by a public-private partnership of hospitals and Microsoft recently opened and is targeting Medicaid home-care clients, their caregivers, and other highest-risk older adults who have previously not been able to secure a vaccination.

    Eastside Fire has established mobile vaccination teams that have been operational for the past two weeks to adult care homes and senior living facilities in Sammamish and Issaquah. We are also working with the human services personnel from each jurisdiction to identify and schedule the mobile teams once they are authorized by King County Public Health to move beyond these adult care facilities.

    Unfortunately, the planning for a mass vaccination site which was to be held at Issaquah High School has stopped. This was due to multiple reasons, but primarily because our partners in Swedish hospital had their allocation of vaccines cut due to statewide shortages and Issaquah School District was hoping to return some student extracurricular activities to the location.

    We have made considerable progress towards the establishment of a mid-volume, drive-through vaccination site. Right now, we are working with WA State Parks to secure the site location, have begun obtaining quotes for the necessary logistical requirements, and have drafted an agreement between the City of Sammamish, the City of Issaquah, and Eastside Fire and Rescue to cover the operational costs of this venture. While the agreement is still in draft form and being reviewed by all parties involved, Chief Clark has expressed to me that Sammamish’s cost share would equal roughly $450K - $500K. We have also been in frequent contact with our county and state partners, coordinating our efforts to establish this vaccination site and hoping to secure a dedicated line of vaccines once the regional supply increases. Our goal, if the vaccine is obtained, is to have the site open for operations in early March.

    While it is expected that the City would be able to seek FEMA Disaster Assistance reimbursement for vaccine-related operational expenses, I wanted to also ensure that I provided an update as to the remaining balance of CARES Act reimbursement that the City had earmarked for ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery. To date, the City has spent roughly $2,138,000 of the $2.9 million that was reimbursed to the City. That includes roughly $187K on internal COVID-19 expenses, $215K on expenses necessary to ensure continuity of government, $1,211,000 in two rounds of small business and non-profit grants, and $525K to support human service organizations assisting those impacted.

    For residents seeking information on vaccine availability, state or local COVID-19 updates, or links to resources that may be able to provide additional assistance, I urge them all to visit the City’s Connect Sammamish COVID-19 portal.

    With that, I would be happy to address any questions you may have. Thank you.

  • Update from the Vaccine Community Partnership (February 8, 2021)

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    Eastside Fire & Rescue’s mobile vaccination teams have delivered vaccines to every adult family home (long term care facilities) in Issaquah, and nearly all adult family Homes in Sammamish last week. EF&R will deliver vaccines to one more remaining adult family home in Sammamish this Wednesday, February 10. In all, over 100 doses will have been administered by EF&R to adult family homes in Issaquah and Sammamish. EF&R receives all its vaccine supply for King County Public Health, which has restricted the very limited supply to only adult family homes.

  • Emergency Manager's Report to City Council on COVID-19 (February 2, 2021)

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    Andrew Stevens, CEM - Emergency Manager -Eastside Fire & Rescue

    Good evening Mayor, Council members, and City Manager.

    Lots to discuss on the COVID-19 front this evening, but I’ll begin with a brief global, national, and regional update. Across the world, there have been over 103 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, with the United States accounting for more than a quarter of that total figure with 26.4 million cases and nearly 450K fatalities. Across Washington, there have been 313K cases and over 4,300 fatalities. King County is reporting 77K positive cases, 4,815 COVID-19 hospitalizations, and 1,264 deaths. Lastly, the City of Sammamish has reported 965 positives cases and 8 fatalities.

    While nothing about the beforementioned statistics sounds promising, the good news is that in many areas we are seeing sharp decreases in COVID-related case counts, hospitalizations, and deaths from the dramatic surge experienced over the holiday season. In King County, for example, seven-day averages for positive cases dropped 50% between Jan. 1st and 31st, and the seven-day average for deaths was down 71% from Jan 1 as well. This is great news, not only to the general population but to the healthcare systems that were struggling to stay afloat during the surge.

    Changes were also recently made to the Governor’s Healthy Washington plan, the evaluation criteria for regions to move from Phase 1 to Phase 2, as well as the timeframe in which regions can advance were modified. With the changes, the Puget Sound region, which encompasses King, Snohomish, and Pierce Counties progressed to Phase 2. Phase 2 allows for some lessening of non-pharmaceutical COVID-19 mitigations. For example, indoor dining is now available however limited to 25% of normal capacity.

    While the region’s advancement to Phase 2 will come as a welcome relief to many, I would strongly caution any change to anyone’s COVID-19 precautions. With new, highly contagious strains of COVID-19 now being transmitted in the region, now is not the time to lay down your guard and partake in activities that increase your likelihood of exposure. We have all seen dips in COVID transmission rates resulting in complacency in COVID-19 protections, which in turn leads to another surge. Countless experts warned that relaxing COVID-19 mitigations prior to the holiday season would result in a catastrophic resurge in the pandemic, and that is exactly what happened. So, while it is ok to celebrate these advances and small victories, I urge Sammamish residents and anyone else listening to continue to prioritize your safety and the safety of others in every choice you make.

    The last two weeks have led to advancements in the availability of vaccinations as well. Across the region we are seeing more and more medical care providers gaining access to COVID vaccine. We are seeing distribution at medical facilities, such as hospitals and pharmacies, as well as pop-up clinics hosted through public-private partnerships.

    The County has also begun operation of two mass vaccination sites, in Auburn and Kent. These sites will initially be able to deliver 500 vaccines per day and scale up to accommodate greater capacity as time goes on and access to vaccine becomes greater. Because of the massive amount of need these sites have limited operations to those 75 and over, and reservations have either been filled or are nearly fully booked at this time.

    Waiting for the infrastructure needed to support widespread vaccination efforts to be constructed by others is not doing residents of Sammamish and other Eastside communities justice. To proactively engage in these efforts, the City of Sammamish has joined a collaborative, public-private partnership with the City of Issaquah, Eastside Fire and Rescue, Swedish Healthcare, the Issaquah School District, and Costco. The goal of this partnership is to ensure that vaccines are delivered to our communities in a safe, equitable, and timely manner. We are tackling the vaccination operations through multiple approaches to ensure those objectives will be met. These efforts include mobile vaccination teams, a pedestrian mass vaccination site, and a vehicular mass vaccination site.

    Eastside Fire has established mobile vaccination teams that will be deploying this week. EFR personnel have received training and the logistical/operational capability to deploy mobile vaccination teams to vulnerable populations. EFR will begin vaccination efforts tomorrow in Issaquah, and Sammamish on Thursday. Currently, the teams are focusing on deploying to adult care facilities that have not been able to partner with medical care providers (such as pharmacies) for the in-house delivery of vaccines. EFR will be expanding these efforts as time grows and will be utilizing the mobility of the teams to target vulnerable populations who may otherwise have difficulty navigating or access vaccine through an established point of dispensing. Human services personnel from each jurisdiction will be coordinating with these teams to identify and schedule vaccine delivery to the most vulnerable populations.

    The partnership is also in the operational planning phase of a pedestrian mass vaccination site capable of delivering hundreds of vaccinations per day at Issaquah High School. This effort is a massive undertaking, utilizing considerable personnel, volunteers, and resources provided by Swedish Healthcare. Operational and logistical planning is still underway; however, the Task Force is aiming to conduct a functional exercise on location soon.

    Lastly, I have been tasked with overseeing the development and operation of a long-term mass vaccination site. A drive-through operation was agreed upon by the partners to simplify the logistical strain required by Task Force partners and provide for greater scalability as vaccine eligible phases are opened. The proposed strategy is to design a modular system capable of providing 500, reservation based, vaccinations per every 2 lanes, based upon the King County run mass vaccination site estimates. We are currently identifying the personnel and logistical needs for such operations, as well as conducting site visits of potential POD locations. Our current objective for standing up this operation is March 1 with the site potentially operational for many months.

    I would like to reiterate to both the Council and to the public listening, that currently, only the mobile vaccination teams have a dedicated source of COVID-19 vaccinations, and even that is limited. However, the Task Force is operating under the assumption that we will be able to secure the vaccine allocations from the State and King County once we have demonstrated our commitment and capability to deliver mass vaccinations to our communities. We must show that we have the infrastructure in place before we will ever stand a chance of obtaining the amount of vaccine required for such operations. This is no different from the response and recovery operations of more traditional disasters. By definition, a disaster is when you have more problems than resources to deal with them, but eventually, those resources come flooding in and those tasked with managing the crisis better be ready to accept them. With COVID, our problem is the virus and vaccines are the resources in high demand. Eleven months ago, it was PPE. However, the operational objectives set out by this partnership will ensure that Eastside communities will be ready and able to provide vaccines the moment the supply is there.

    Through every step of the way, City staff and partners will be ensuring the public is informed and access to vaccine will be well communicated. The partnership is utilizing a joint information system to provide “one-voice” messaging to all partners involved to ensure broad public outreach and involvement throughout these efforts. The City will continue to be utilizing the Connect Sammamish COVID-19 platform, as well as a variety of other media, to provide timely information to your residents.

    Regarding operational funding, vaccine-related operations are reimbursable to local governments through FEMA Disaster Assistance, and I will be designing the operations to best capture those eligible costs. We currently are operating under the assumption that vaccine-related expenses will be reimbursable at 75%; however, there has been preliminary communication from the federal government hinting that vaccine-related expenses may be reimbursable at 100%. That being said, the City still has roughly $1 million remaining in CARES Act reimbursements that are earmarked for COVID-19 response and recovery, a portion of which could be earmarked for vaccine distribution operations. To date, the City has spent roughly $1.9 million of the $2.9 million that was reimbursed to the City. That includes roughly $168K on internal COVID-19 expenses, $215K on I.T. expenses necessary to ensure continuity of government, $1,211,000 in two rounds of small business and non-profit grants, and $315K to support human service organizations assisting those impacted.

    As you can see, there are many moving pieces and partners involved in ensuring our communities are well served through this response. I would like to thank the residents for their continued patience, as well as the Council for their continued support.

    With that, I would be happy to address any questions you may have. Thank you.

  • Slides from Sound Cities Association Briefing with Patty Hayes, Director, Public Health - Seattle & King County

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