Officials see COVID-19 cases leveling off

There is early evidence the latest wave of COVID-19 cases has peaked in Pierce County, according to public health authorities.

The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department reported Jan. 18 that cases would likely level off soon. Still, “cases are among the highest we’ve ever seen,” and hospitalizations and deaths related to the pandemic “will continue to increase in the weeks ahead because they usually lag case counts,” officials said.

According to the state Department of Health, COVID-19 case and hospitalization rates for people up to 19 years old went up from Dec. 19 to Jan. 2. Kids 5 to 11 years old have the lowest vaccination rate in Pierce County.

Vaccines and boosters protect kids from the worst COVID-19 outcomes. Everyone 5 and older is eligible for the vaccine. And everyone 12 and older is eligible for a vaccine booster dose. Information on locations for vaccines and boosters is available at and 253-649-1412.

Health officials confirmed 7,943 cases of COVID-19 and 17 new deaths for the period of Jan. 9-15 in Pierce County. Fourteen of the deaths were among people in their 60s or olders. The others were in their 30s and 50s.

We record these deaths in our cases dashboard on our data page which reflects the date of death.

Pierce County’s total COVID-19 count was 140,418 cases and 1,016 deaths. An average of 1,135 new cases were reported per day for the seven-day period ending Jan. 15.

In the two weeks leading up to Jan. 15 in Pierce County, 20 percent of cases were among people younger than 20 years old. For other age groups, the rate of cases was 28 percent for 20 to 34 years old, 24 percent for 35 to 49, and 25 percent for 50 or older.