Here are the latest updates in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic in the  Stanwood-Camano area and Washington.

Wednesday, May 20

Island County

  • NOTE: Island County case updates are delayed while staff conducts community testing.
  • Countywide: 181 cases and 10 deaths.  
  • Camano Island: 37 confirmed cases and no deaths. 

Snohomish County

  • Countywide: 7 new cases since Tuesday. 2,825 cases, 338 probable cases and 132 deaths. There are 36 people hospitalized and 2,469 have recovered. 
  • Stanwood: 0 new cases since Tuesday. 95 cases, eight deaths and 78 have recovered.

Skagit County

  • Countywide: 426 cases and 14 deaths as of May 18.

Washington state

  • In all, 18,811 cases and 1,031 deaths as of 11:59 p.m. May 18.

New developments 

  • "Imposter Fraud" slowing unemployment payments: The Employment Security Department has detected a dramatic rise in imposter fraud — claims filed using stolen personal information. External data breaches have exposed many Americans’ personal information to fraudsters, who are using that information to file false unemployment claims across the country. ESD is responding by placing a 1-2 day hold on all benefit payments to validate their authenticity. Additionally, the department is expanding its fraud investigation team and is requiring authentication from customers filing claims. Read ESD Commissioner Suzi LeVine’s May 18 update.
  • Washington state expands capacity to track and prevent spread of COVID-19: The Washington state Department of Health is rapidly training personnel to support case investigations and contact tracing. As of May 19, 723 National Guard personnel and 769 Department of Licensing personnel have been trained to help local health jurisdictions with this work as needed. “I’m grateful to the agencies who answered the call to contribute to this important work,” said Governor Jay Inslee. “We are all in this together, and the support from the National Guard and the Department of Licensing affirms that. Rapid work to track and prevent the spread of disease is an important piece of our ability to safely emerge from this pandemic.”
  • Payroll employment plummets, unemployment rate soars: Washington’s economy lost 527,000 jobs in April and the state’s preliminary seasonally adjusted monthly unemployment rate for April increased from 5.1% to 15.4% according to the Employment Security Department. “The April jobs report numbers confirm what we already expected based on the record number of individuals who have filed for unemployment benefits since March 7,” ESD Commissioner Suzi LeVine said. “While these numbers are dramatic, it is in alignment with what we expected as the state has taken the public health crisis seriously and is abiding by the 'Stay home, stay healthy' order. These losses are likely to continue into May, with a shift coming the other direction as our economy gradually re-opens. Employment Security, along with our partner agencies and state leaders, are committed to helping Washingtonians during this crisis and get back to work as it becomes safe to do so.” The Employment Security Department released the preliminary job estimates from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics as part of its Monthly Employment Report.  
  • Long term care facility reporting update: As of May 18, a total of 3,534 COVID-19 cases (19% of total cases) and 624 deaths (62% of total deaths) have been identified as associated with a long term care facility, including nursing home, assisted living facility or adult family home. These cases may include residents as well as employees and visitors, and currently, we have limited ability to distinguish amongst them.

Donate to local nonprofits

Local organizations are busier than ever stepping up to help those in need, but their funding is drying up. Read more about the local situation here

Get Help

  • Meals on Wheels Nutrition Program: The Program is still running for seniors age 60 and older, with Island Senior Resources staff taking precautions to prepare and deliver meals. Frozen meals are available for pickup at Camano Center 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. To place an order for pickup, call Camano Center 360-387-0222. To sign up for home delivery, call 360-321-1615. Find more at senior-resources.org.
  • Camano High Risk Grocery Delivery: Camano Center members defined as “High Risk” can request emergency grocery delivery from Camano IGA. Call Camano Center at 360-387-0222. camanocenter.org
  • The Community Resource Center of Stanwood Camano can help navigate community resources and financial assistance options. crc-sc.org.
  • Camano Chapel offers grocery delivery for primarily but not exclusively the elderly who can’t or shouldn’t go grocery shopping and those who have medically compromised health issues. Call 360-387-7202 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday to order groceries. Groceries will be delivered to Thursday afternoon. camanochapel.org
  • Stanwood Camano Food Bank: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays; stanwoodcamanofoodbank.org
  • Meals for kids: The food bank and the Stanwood-Camano School District are distributing food to children. Learn more here.
  • To see what restaurants and businesses are open, click here
  • Island County offering call center: County officials are available to answer questions and route people to the right department, including for topics such as mental health, housing support, veterans, substance abuse and other basic needs. Residents can reach the Call Center at 360-678-2301, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
  • What you need to do to get your stimulus check? Millions of Americans will begin receiving their "economic impact payments" as a result of the recently passed $2.2 trillion stimulus bill. Read a Q&A from the IRS here.
  • Washington 211 COVID-19 Call Center: Do you need information or answers to your questions and concerns about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)? You can call 1-800-525-0127 or text 211-211 for help. You can also text the word “Coronavirus” to 211-211 to receive information and updates on your phone wherever you are. You will receive links to the latest information on COVID-19, including county-level updates, and resources for families, businesses, students, and more.

Business resources

  • Online form to report nonessential business violators: Gov. Jay Inslee announced guidance for state and local enforcement of his recent “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order. The state has created a one-stop online form for reporting businesses potentially violating orders and is providing guidance to local law enforcement on enforcing bans on gatherings of individuals. Officials urge people to not call 911 for suspected violators.
  • The city of Stanwood has compiled a comprehensive collection of resources and information for local business owners. It includes tips, resources to consider during the pandemic and links to disaster relief and loans.
  • The Camano Island Chamber of Commerce launched a new website to assist with finding resources, updated business hours, volunteer opportunities, grocery/food assistance, and other helpful links. 
  • Stanwood and Camano Island businesses are asked to complete this Economic Impact Survey. The survey also provides the opportunity for respondents to reach out for help and get back to business as quickly as possible.

Health resources

Tips to stay healthy

  • Stay home if you have mild symptoms of a respiratory illness, avoid close contact with others if you have symptoms, and save emergency room visits for emergencies.
  • Call your primary health care provider if symptoms worsen.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, and throw it away.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the restroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. 
  • Use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Questions? Call the statewide coronavirus call center at 1-800-525-0127 and press #.

Connect with us

Contact reporter Evan Caldwell at ecaldwell@scnews.com and follow him on Twitter @Evan_SCN for updates throughout the week and on Instagram @evancaldwell.scn for more photos.

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