PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Earlier in July, the CDC said a new omicron subvariant known as BA.5 now comprises a majority of U.S. COVID-19 cases and its high transmissibility was causing it to spread quickly. 

In Washington state, cases rose quickly starting in late April, but have been fluctuating up and down since then. 

According to the latest data made available to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are 14 counties in Washington with COVID-19 community levels rated “high,” meaning they have had 200 or more new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people in the last seven days, or they’ve had more than 20 new COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 people within a seven-day period. 

The CDC recommends people in counties with high COVID-19 community levels wear masks indoors in public and on public transportation. 

The community levels were calculated on Thursday, July 14. 

The following counties all have COVID-19 community levels rated high: 

  • Thurston County: 216.5 cases per 100,000 people 
  • King County: 328.22 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Snohomish County: 296.81 cases per 100,000 people
  • Skagit County: 213.61 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Chelan County: 234.46 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Douglas County: 283.22 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Grant County: 263.98 cases per 100,000 people
  • Lincoln County: 219.4 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Spokane County: 241.2 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Adams County: 335.28 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Franklin County: 250.99 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Benton County: 207.45 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Walla Walla County: 255.1 cases per 100,000 people 
  • Columbia County: 200.75 cases per 100,000 people 

The COVID-19 community levels in 20 Washington counties are considered “medium” and in five counties are considered “low.” 

In counties with high community levels, the CDC says anyone at risk for severe illness in these communities should consider taking additional precautions besides simply wearing a mask, like staying 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, and washing their hands often.