SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash. — Health officials in Spokane County say they're worried about a spike in coronavirus cases after the Fourth of July weekend.
The incidence rate of coronavirus in the county has tripled over the past few weeks — and health officials say they had "great concerns" ahead of the holiday weekend.
Examining data from past holiday weekends, we may be able to see if a spike is likely to come within the two weeks after. In that length of time, it's possible to see if there was an impact on cases, given that test results take on average between two and ten days.
Mother's Day weekend
Leading up to Mother's day weekend, Spokane County was reporting on average, 1.86 new cases of the coronavirus per day.
The week after, between the dates of May 11 and 17, Spokane County saw a slight increase, reporting an average of 2.43 new cases per day.
The week after is when cases numbers start to jump by a significant amount. For the week of May 18 through the 24, there were 12 new cases a day on average, a 545% increase from the previous week.
Memorial Day Weekend
Phase 2 took effect right before Memorial Day weekend, which loosened restrictions on social distancing.
Leading up to Memorial Day weekend, Spokane County was reporting 12 new cases per day on average.
That increased slightly the week after, between May 25-31. During that time period, there were 15.42 new cases reported per day.
Two weeks after Memorial Day weekend, Spokane County was reporting on average 20.42 new coronavirus cases per day, which increased the average number of cases reported by 70%.
Spokane Pediatrics has seen a significant increase in coronavirus cases among young people in the last several weeks.
"We had so many phone calls of parents worried, friends worried, kids worried, and crying feeling like they made the wrong choice," said Dr. Kimberly Grandinetti with Spokane Pediatrics.
Dr. Grandinetti said the drastic increase is something they want all parents to be aware of.
"I think it was a combination of socialization after Memorial Day and in general those kids are just wanting to get together and see each other," Dr. Grandinetti said.
We haven't quite cleared the two-week mark since Father's Day, but new case numbers are on the rise by a significant amount.
If there is a moderate increase, like that we saw post Memorial Day, new case numbers could average in the 100 to 110 range.
But a larger increase, like the jump seen in the two weeks preceding Mother's Day weekend, could mean seeing numbers as high as 400 new cases a day.
Of course, those are the worst case scenarios that health officials could be preparing for based on trends seen in Spokane County so far.