Three-year-old Allizay Reyes looks to the next house on the block as her friend Riley McCloskey gets some love from her grandma, Sandy Goings, during the 2017 annual early trick-or-treat event on Carrie and Edith Streets in North Walla Walla.

With Halloween around the corner, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert says trick-or-treating can be done safely.

“This is a time that children love,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci during a CNN interview Sunday. “It’s a very important part of the year for children.”

COVID-19 death rates and hospitalizations have continued to drop in Walla Walla County and across the state, said county public health director Dr. Daniel Kaminsky, during the Monday, Oct. 11 meeting of the Walla Walla County commission.

Among Washington’s 39 counties, Walla Walla is in the middle of the pack when it comes to new COVID-19 cases and vaccinations, Kaminsky said. The rate of infection has decreased significantly, which Kaminsky credited to precautionary measures taken by residents, including masking, social distancing, and vaccination.

But vaccinations also continue to slow, Kaminsky noted, with 902 vaccines administered last week, compared to around 1,000 the week prior. Of those, less than 100 were the 1st dose, with the vast majority either being an individual’s second or third dose.

As of Monday evening, Walla Walla County has reported 194 new cases in the last week, up from 134 new cases the week prior, bringing the total to 8,621. Active cases have gone down in the last week, however, with 417 active cases reported Monday, down from 503 active cases of COVID-19 the week prior, according to the Walla Walla Department of Community Health. Nine county residents are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, down from 15 last week.

Approximately 65.8 percent of county residents 18 or older are fully vaccinated.

In neighboring Umatilla County, 388 new cases of coronavirus have been reported in the last week, bringing the total number of cases since the pandemic began to 13,984.

Numbers for Walla Walla County, as of Oct. 11:

  • 65.8 percent of residents 18 years or older are fully vaccinated.
  • 417 active cases.
  • Total COVID-19 cases stands at 8,621.
  • 96 deaths.

Numbers for Umatilla County, as of Oct. 11:

  • 42.2 percent of residents of any age are fully vaccinated.
  • Total COVID-19 cases stands at 13,984.
  • 136 deaths.

Numbers for Columbia County, as of Oct. 11:

  • 26 active cases.
  • Total COVID-19 cases stands at 334.
  • 7 deaths.

Emry Dinman can be reached at emrydinman@wwub.com or 425-941-5829.

Reporter covering agriculture, Walla Walla city and county government, and other topics.

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