Seven new cases of COVID on Orcas since last update

  • Fri May 21st, 2021 10:53am
  • News

Submitted by San Juan County

Note: Current positive case numbers are available online at the County Case Data Dashboard at sanjuanco.com/1682/COVID-19-SJC-Case-Count. As indicated on that page, these numbers are only updated after case confirmation is complete, usually daily. It is possible that other information sources in community may be quicker to report on new cases, but ensuring privacy and accuracy is critical for this official information source.

Since the last update on Friday, May 14, total cases in San Juan County have increased from 180 to 187.

There are 28 close contacts of positive cases currently in active quarantine. It is important to note that this number would be far higher if not for a number of close contacts being fully vaccinated.


There are seven new cases on Orcas Island since the last update. The following details are known about these cases: -Six of these new cases are close contacts of each other, either household or otherwise. The initial transmission source is still under investigation. Note that none of these transmissions occurred in a school setting.

One of these cases appears to be unrelated to other local cases and was identified while individual was on the mainland.

There are seven confirmed positive cases under active monitoring on or tied to Orcas Island at this time.


There are no new cases on Lopez Island since the last update. There are no confirmed positive cases under active monitoring on Lopez Island at this time.

San Juan

There are no new cases on San Juan Island since the last update. There are no confirmed positive cases under active monitoring on San Juan Island at this time.

Overall picture

As of May 20, 77% of island residents 16 and older have at a minimum initiated their vaccine. Of that same 16-plus group, 60% have been fully vaccinated. These are remarkable numbers that are the highest of any county in Washington. These rates will continue to increase, particularly due to the recent and very successful effort to vaccinate islanders 12 years old and up.

We must remember that all island kids 11 and under will remain unprotected until a vaccine is approved for children, likely this fall. It is also key to keep in mind that despite encouraging vaccination rates in the islands, there are still islanders who for a number of reasons remain unvaccinated. Those two groups (and their parents) should continue to be thoughtful about their exposure- particularly now- when cases are dropping in most places but are still relatively high overall. There is still plenty of opportunities to be exposed to COVID, and the long-term effects of COVID continue to be better understood and increasingly worrisome.

It is expected that nearly all islanders who wish to be vaccinated will be fully protected by late June, including the nearly 500 island kids 12 and up who participated in this week’s vaccine clinics.

At this time, vaccination opportunities in the islands will start to diminish — but the San Juan County vaccine team will continue to offer regular clinics at least through June. These are expected to all be single-shot Johnson and Johnson clinics. For the latest schedule and more information, go to https://www.sanjuanco.com/1737/COVID-Vaccine-Info.

After June, vaccination will be delivered via any local medical providers who choose to make the service available to their patients.