SJC COVID cases grow to 213 | An update on the Orcas case cluster

Submitted by San Juan County.

Note: Current positive case numbers are available online at the County Case Data Dashboard,

San Juan County has been aggressively investigating a recent COVID outbreak on Orcas Island. Since the source case was identified, San Juan County has identified nine additional linked positive cases. Of the 10 outbreak cases, five are confirmed to be unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated, one’s vaccination status is unknown and four are possible breakthrough cases.

The initial source of the outbreak is unknown. However, all subsequent cases were close contacts with a confirmed positive case. There are two additional cases on Orcas, not apparently linked to this cluster outbreak, also under investigation.

Thank you to the county staff for their expeditious work investigating this outbreak. And to county providers and pharmacies for providing testing of the close contacts around the recently confirmed cases in order to minimize spread and keep our community safe.

Weekly Case Update

As of Aug. 5, case updates on the County Case Data Dashboard will include positive COVID cases which have been confirmed by PCR testing methods, as well as some probable over-the-counter positive test results which are unconfirmed by PCR testing. This is to align our county case reporting with recent changes to the Washington State Department of Health reporting criteria.

Since the last update on Friday, July 30, total cases in San Juan County have increased from 197 to 213. There are approximately twelve residents in quarantine at this time.

Lopez Island

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.

Orcas Island

There are 12 new cases on Orcas Island since the last update. Ten of these are a part of a case cluster, described above. Two are household contacts where the source of transmission is unknown.

There are ten confirmed positive cases under active monitoring on Orcas Island at this time.

San Juan Island

There are three new cases on San Juan Island since the last update. The source of two cases is recent international travel and a subsequent household close contact. One is a household contact of an earlier case.

There are three confirmed positive cases under active monitoring on San Juan Island at this time.

Overall picture

COVID activity within San Juan County has increased exponentially in the past weeks, but the best ways to protect yourself remain unchanged. If you missed our Hot Topic last week here is a list of ways to protect yourself: get fully vaccinated, mask up indoors, travel smart, socially distance, stay home when sick, avoid high risk activities, and opt outdoors. Science and experience have shown these strategies work.

San Juan County is waiting for the genetic testing results of the earlier breakthrough cases to know if the Delta variant reached the county. With our high vaccination rates, San Juan County can expect to see higher percentage of breakthrough cases than other counties; and can also expect to see those who do experience breakthrough infection to have fewer symptoms and less severe symptoms.

For information about providers in San Juan County that are administering COVID-19 vaccines, which remain our best protection against COVID and the way through this current wave, visit