In Phase 2 of Gov. Jay Inslee’s reopening plan, which was announced Jan. 28, restaurants can reopen at a maximum 25% capacity and a limit of six people per table. Inslee recently announced all counties will be staying in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan for the next several weeks. Pictured: People enjoy outdoor dining last summer in downtown Kent. Courtesy photo

In Phase 2 of Gov. Jay Inslee’s reopening plan, which was announced Jan. 28, restaurants can reopen at a maximum 25% capacity and a limit of six people per table. Inslee recently announced all counties will be staying in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan for the next several weeks. Pictured: People enjoy outdoor dining last summer in downtown Kent. Courtesy photo

Inslee: All of Washington to stay in Phase 2 for a few weeks

The governor issued a weekslong pause on regions moving backward, but has yet to outline a Phase 3.

King County, along with the rest of Washington, will be staying in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan for the next several weeks, Gov. Jay Inslee said Thursday (Feb. 25).

The governor announced a weekslong pause on counties moving backward to the first phase of Healthy Washington, which barred indoor dining and other business activity. However, it will take weeks to get any details on what’s permitted in a third phase of the plan, and what benchmarks regions must meet to advance.

“We cannot let our guard down when we are so close to potential victory,” Inslee said. “We need to be mindful, working with our scientists going forward. We ought to be both confident and conscious.”

The news comes as most of Washington continues to see decreased COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

Inslee vowed to talk with civic leaders, business owners, workers and “anybody we can find on the Planet Earth to help us” figure out how to continue reopening amid the ongoing pandemic.

When asked if it might take until the end of March before any counties can reach Phase 3, Inslee said “not necessarily. It could be earlier than that.” If the state gets clarity on variants and the ability of the different vaccines to “knock out the variants,” it could be before that, he said.

Two months into the state’s vaccine rollout, more than 1.4 million doses have been administered, and 430,000 Washingtonians are fully vaccinated.

But despite growing supply and increased capacity, many eligible residents remain frustrated with the scarcity of appointments.

“It’s important to step back and remember this is something we’ve never done before in our lifetimes,” Assistant Secretary of Health Michele Roberts said during a Feb. 25 morning news conference. “We’re trying to vaccinate the entire population in six to seven months.”

And another vaccine is likely on the way.

On Friday (Feb. 26), a federal health panel is set to begin reviewing Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine.

Approval could come in a few days, and the state is preparing to receive its first shipment — about 61,000 doses — as early as next week, health officials said.

“That’s not an insignificant amount to add,” Inslee said.

The addition of a third vaccine could cause people to wonder which one they should try to secure.

“The best choice of the vaccine is the one that’s available,” state epidemiologist Dr. Scott Lindquist said. “It really doesn’t matter.”


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@federalwaymirror.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.federalwaymirror.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

Superintendent Dr. Tammy Campbell
Federal Way Public Schools Superintendent Tammy Campbell stepping down in June

Deputy Superintendent Dr. Dani Pfeiffer appointed as incoming superintendent starting July 1, 2021.

A student holds a sign that reads "I can't breathe" at the protest on June 10, 2020, outside of Thomas Jefferson High School. (Olivia Sullivan/staff photo)
Federal Way mayor on Chauvin verdict: ‘This was the right decision’

City’s police department has made policy changes in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

The Redondo Beach boat launch is located at Redondo Beach Drive South in Des Moines. Photo courtesy of South King Fire
Man saved from car after driving into water off Redondo Beach boat launch

South King Fire rescue swimmer pulled the man from the sinking car around 12:30 a.m. April 16.

Lydia Assefa-Dawson
Federal Way Councilmember Lydia Assefa-Dawson announces run for King County Council District 7

Assefa-Dawson pledges to bring leadership and perspectives as a housing advocate, person with disabilities, immigrant, and mom to a seat held by 28-year incumbent.

Screenshot
Black Education Strategy Roundtable receives grant to advance racial equity

Federal Way-based organization aims to create equitable educational opportunities for Black students.

File photo
Multiple apartments, vehicles struck in shooting at Federal Way complex | Police blotter

Following is a sample from the Federal Way police log April 7-13.

Photo via Pexels
King County residents needed for first respiratory study using Apple watches

UW study to help find if devices can detect early warning signs of acute respiratory infections, such as COVID-19 and flu.

Pexels photo
Celebrate Centerstage 2021 fundraiser kicks off May 9

Proceeds from the annual event benefit artist stipends, education programming and general operations.

Photo courtesy of Johnson and Johnson (jnj.com)
Johnson & Johnson vaccine halted in Washington over side effect

Following federal guidance, Washington health care providers are temporarily pausing Johnson &… Continue reading

Most Read