2/2: Groundhog Day!

By rebecca No comments

Today’s briefing includes the Latinx En Accion/TPCHD Spanish-language brief covid report.


  • Pierce, King, Snohomish, Thurston, Grays Harbor, Lewis and Pacific Counties are all in Phase 2; all other regions in WA State remain in Phase 1.
  • The governor recently issued a proclamation to align state foster care services with updates required under new federal law
    • Foster youth over 18 years old who have opted to receive extended foster care services will no longer “age out” at 21 years old during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Age limits and some eligibility requirements have been eliminated in order to support young adults who received foster care as minors.
    • More information can be had by calling the Department of Children, Youth and Families at 1-800 723-4831 or online at dcyf.wa.gov.


  • Washingtonians can find out if they are eligible for COVID-19 vaccines online at FindYourPhaseWA.org.
  • The State department of health notes that its mass vaccination clinics in Eastern WA and Clark County are available only to health care workers, high-risk first responders, long-term care residents, people 65 years or older, and people 50 years or older in multigenerational households, and recipients must also either reside or work in Washington State.
  • The following health systems and clinics in our region are offering vaccine appointments for eligible individuals:
    • MultiCare, Virginia Mason Franciscan Health, Kaiser Permanente, Sea Mar, Orting Family Practice, OM Life Health Clinic, University Place Medical Clinic, and UW Medicine
  • The following pharmacies also have vaccine programs by appointment:
    • Safeway pharmacies in Bonney Lake & Lakewood
    • Kirk’s Pharmacy in Eatonville
    • Lincoln Pharmacy in Tacoma
    • Alberton’s pharmacy in Puyallup
  • Community vaccination sites for vulnerable, underserved individuals are now open at the ShoWare Center in Kent and at the General Services Administration (GSA) Complex in Auburn.
    • Online appointment registration opens for those clinics is at kingcounty.gov/vaccine.
    • Registration is only open only to residents of south King County from the following groups:
      • People Age 75 and older
      • family caregivers or home care workers taking care of someone age 50 or older who cannot live independently
      • Anyone who is Unable to live independently and receiving care from a caregiver, relative, in-home caregiver or someone who works outside the home.
      • Older individuals living with AND caring for kin (examples include caring for a grandchild, niece or nephew. This does not include parents living with their child.).
      • For more information by phone, call 206-263-9600
  • All appointments for the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department’s covid vaccine clinics at Franklin Pierce High School and Washington State Fairgrounds this week filled up within minutes after registration opened this morning at 9am.
    • The dept expects to announce more pop-up vaccine events soon, and urges Pierce County residents to follow the department’s social media posts and keep an eye on their website for more opportunities.
    • Individuals can also sign up for email notifications in advance of future COVID-19 community vaccine events by going to tpchd.org/notify.


  • The Tacoma Pierce County Health Department reported 128 new COVID 19 cases today.
    • There were 4 newly reported deaths as well.
    • The 2-week case rate per 100,000 people is 336.
  • As of yesterday, High school fall sports teams are authorized to begin practices, but individual schools and districts may have their own procedures and timelines.
  • Safeway Albertsons pharmacies are hiring additional pharmacy staff, including pharmacists and technicians, to help meet the demand for COVID-19 vaccine administration.


  • The Tacoma City Council will hold its weekly meeting tonight at 5pm.
    • It will be broadcast on TVTacoma and livestreamed on Facebook and TVTacoma.com
  • The city is also seeking resident feedback about our housing growth strategy through an online survey available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian, and Khmer.
  • Tacoma Public Utilities notes that some customers have reported receiving calls claiming the power provider is going to cut their power. Further prompts led to a request for a credit card.
    • TPU is not disconnecting service due to nonpayment during the State of Emergency, and advises anyone receiving a call from someone asking for a credit card to verify your account or claiming they will cut your power, please hang up.
    • TACOMA PUBLIC UTILITIES WILL NEVER Call, email, or make a home visit demanding immediate payment, or request credit card, banking, or financial information. They also never contact customers to request payment on prepaid cards.
  • Starting Feb. 16, Tacoma Public Schools plans to welcome kindergarten students to in-person learning four days a week, with at-home, independent learning on Wednesdays.
  • This change is based on the anticipation that Pierce County’s COVID-19 case rate per 100,000 will drop below 350 by Feb. 16. As of Feb. 1, the case rate was 359, according to the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department. If it does not drop below 350 by Feb. 16, kindergarten students will remain in cohorts. We will notify kindergarten families if the planned Feb. 16 return to four days a week is not possible.
  • Childcare and schools. ➡️ tpchd.org/covidinfoschools


  • There are numerous free COVID-19 testing sites in our region, including at Multicare, Franciscan, and Kaiser facilities; at Community Healthcare and SeaMar Community Health Centers; at Cheney Stadium, at the Lakewood State Emissions Testing Center, and more.
    • You can go to coronavirus.wa.gov and follow links for “Find Covid Testing Near Me” for specific locations.
    • In addition to permanent regular testing locations, The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Dept’s mobile testing events this weekend and next week are as follows:
      • Thursday, Feb 4: Pacific Lutheran University
      • Friday, Feb 5: Eatonville High School, Asia Pacific Cultural Center in Tacoma
    • No ID is required, tests are free and open to anyone, and most testing runs 10am-3pm, except the Lakewood station goes till 5:30), but check TPCHD.org for specifics
    • Results are available in 3-7 days
  • Three Walgreens pharmacies also now offer free drive-up rapid antigen testing for people Ages 3 and up:
    • In Tacoma at 3737 Pacific Ave
    • In Lakewood at 8224 STEILACOOM BLVD SW
    • In Kent at 27112 132ND AVE SE
    • Patients using this testing method must pre-register online at Walgreens.com/COVID19Testing.