Today, Gov. Jay Inslee announced that he is pausing phase movement of his Healthy Washington—Road to Recovery plan for the next two weeks. Every county will remain frozen in its current phase until he re-evaluates after the two-week pause.
Inslee credited plateauing case counts and an uptick in vaccine distribution for his decision. As of today, 54% of eligible adults have received their first dose of the vaccine and 38% of eligible adults are fully vaccinated in Washington. He said there is reason to hope that by this summer we can return to more normal activities.
While the state has not moved any county back a phase, local leaders are able to make this decision. In Ferry County, after a recent super-spreader event, local officials decided to move back to Phase 2.
“We appreciate that the governor announced a pause on further rollbacks, which recognizes the sacrifices we have all made to keep each other safe,” said Washington Hospitality Association President and CEO Anthony Anton. “Rolling back counties would have been the wrong decision, given the progress in vaccinations, the drop in the length of hospital stays, the incredible damage that shutting down the economy has on families and small businesses, and that previous rollbacks have not worked. As the vast majority of states have or are prepared to reopen completely, we are eager to move beyond rollback-only approach and create a real path forward.”