Claudia Yaw

The COVID-19 ward at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett in May 2020. (Andy Bronson / Herald file) 20200519

Hospital lost 1% of staff to vax mandate, so why the shortage?

The requirement hardly made a dent in local nursing ranks. Blame burnout and issues brewing for years, officials say.

The COVID-19 ward at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett in May 2020. (Andy Bronson / Herald file) 20200519
Rachel Ford and Taryn Salter watch as Erik Ford and Kam Durden play pool Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, at Vessel Taphouse in Mill Creek, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Lynnwood pirate bar faces mutiny over ‘catch the virus’ show

Employees quit, bands canceled and patrons swore off the Vessel Taphouse after it advertised discounts for people sick with COVID.

Rachel Ford and Taryn Salter watch as Erik Ford and Kam Durden play pool Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, at Vessel Taphouse in Mill Creek, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Registered nurse Estella Wilmarth tends to a patient in the acute care unit of Harborview Medical Center, Friday, Jan. 14, 2022, in Seattle. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is deploying 100 members of the state National Guard to hospitals across the state amid staff shortages due to an omicron-fueled spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations. Inslee announced Thursday that teams will be deployed to assist four overcrowded emergency departments at hospitals in Everett, Yakima, Wenatchee and Spokane, and that testing teams will be based at hospitals in Olympia, Richland, Seattle and Tacoma. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Past the omicron peak? Snohomish County’s COVID cases declining

Hospitalizations are still a concern, however, and infections in Eastern Washington and Idaho could have ripple effects here.

Registered nurse Estella Wilmarth tends to a patient in the acute care unit of Harborview Medical Center, Friday, Jan. 14, 2022, in Seattle. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is deploying 100 members of the state National Guard to hospitals across the state amid staff shortages due to an omicron-fueled spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations. Inslee announced Thursday that teams will be deployed to assist four overcrowded emergency departments at hospitals in Everett, Yakima, Wenatchee and Spokane, and that testing teams will be based at hospitals in Olympia, Richland, Seattle and Tacoma. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
CloZee performs during the second day of Summer Meltdown on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019 in Darrington, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

The psychedelic fest Summer Meltdown is back — and in Monroe

The music and camping event is on for July 28-31, with a new venue along the Skykomish River.

CloZee performs during the second day of Summer Meltdown on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019 in Darrington, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Providence Medical Center Everett, where The Washington National Guard has been deployed to free up staff. (Sue Misao / Herald file)

How many ICU beds open in Snohomish County? One.

The omicron surge appears to be cresting here, but hospitalizations are expected to keep rising.

Providence Medical Center Everett, where The Washington National Guard has been deployed to free up staff. (Sue Misao / Herald file)
Michael Jensen, left, and Nathan Jensen, right, pick up trash in their encampment that they being forced to clear out of by Parks Department the near Silver Lake on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Annual homeless count could shed light on pandemic’s impact

Snohomish County canceled its 2021 point-in-time count. Officials hope this year’s will bring clarity.

Michael Jensen, left, and Nathan Jensen, right, pick up trash in their encampment that they being forced to clear out of by Parks Department the near Silver Lake on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The entrance to the new free COVID vaccination site at the Everett Mall on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Free mass-vaccination site opens Tuesday at Everett Mall

Hundreds of appointments are up for grabs at the state-run site, which will offer initial doses, boosters and pediatric shots.

The entrance to the new free COVID vaccination site at the Everett Mall on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Shelly Holmgren, left, holds hands with her brother Jay Holmgren, center, while they listen to Musicial Thanatologist April Mitchell a song at Providence Everett on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Death, grief and comfort at Everett’s pandemic epicenter

Here are some voices at Providence hospital of those still staring down COVID: a harpist, a cancer patient, a chaplain and a nursing assistant.

Shelly Holmgren, left, holds hands with her brother Jay Holmgren, center, while they listen to Musicial Thanatologist April Mitchell a song at Providence Everett on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Sam Dawson administers a collection swab herself Thursday afternoon at the walk-up COVID testing center on Wetmore Ave in Everett, Washington on January 13, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Sketchy firm’s COVID-test sites shut down as questions mount

The Center for COVID Control will close an Everett site and others around the U.S. as officials take a closer look.

Sam Dawson administers a collection swab herself Thursday afternoon at the walk-up COVID testing center on Wetmore Ave in Everett, Washington on January 13, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers, Snohomish Health District Health Officer Dr. Chris Spitters, and Dr. Jay Cook, Chief Medical Officer for Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, give updates on the response to COVID-19. (Snohomish County Health District)

Prediction: 33%-50% of Snohomish County could catch omicron

“Everyone should assume that they’re going to be exposed,” Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers said.

Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers, Snohomish Health District Health Officer Dr. Chris Spitters, and Dr. Jay Cook, Chief Medical Officer for Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, give updates on the response to COVID-19. (Snohomish County Health District)
People get out of their cars along Wetmore Avenue to check how much farther until the testing site on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

County’s reported infections surpass earlier grim estimates

Meanwhile, traffic caused by an overwhelmed north Everett COVID-19 testing site has been resolved.

People get out of their cars along Wetmore Avenue to check how much farther until the testing site on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Show posters hang on the wall next to an empty stage at Lucky Dime in Everett. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Live-music flyers are taken down again as omicron surges

With bands reluctant to play and few people buying tickets, local music venues wonder: Will we be able to stay open?

Show posters hang on the wall next to an empty stage at Lucky Dime in Everett. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Drive-up COVID testing line clogs north Everett neighborhood

City officials are looking to relocate a test site on Wetmore Avenue as demand soars amid an omicron-fueled surge.

on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers (Snohomish County)

On cusp of record surge, Snohomish County exec gets COVID

The county’s health officer suspects up to 5% of residents have contracted the virus in the past two weeks.

Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers (Snohomish County)
Providence Regional Medical Center Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald) 20220105

Providence pauses non-emergency procedures and visitation

In the past week, the Everett hospital’s two campuses have seen in-patient numbers more than double.

Providence Regional Medical Center Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald) 20220105
Alfy's Pizza on Broadway is closed in Everett.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Another Alfy’s pizzeria closes, but the owners say fret not

Regulars said goodbye to the Silver Lake joint. Ownership has pledged to reopen the Alfy’s on Broadway in time for baseball season.

Alfy's Pizza on Broadway is closed in Everett.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Richard Williams enters the tent he shares with his brother Wednesday afternoon in Arlington on December 29, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

As shelters fill, many endure the cold in tents and vehicles

All week, highs have hovered in the 20s in Everett. Meanwhile, another shelter rushed to open Wednesday at a Marysville church.

Richard Williams enters the tent he shares with his brother Wednesday afternoon in Arlington on December 29, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
The Snohomish Health District building in Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald)

Snohomish County reports record spike in COVID-19 cases

The surge is fueled by omicron. Health Officer Dr. Chris Spitters expects numbers to increase from here.

The Snohomish Health District building in Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald)
The California scrub jay. (Audubon.org) 20211228

Volunteers needed to spend New Year’s with the birds

The Pilchuck Audubon Society is looking for feeder-watchers to help add to decades of data this Saturday.

The California scrub jay. (Audubon.org) 20211228
Everett Police respond to an accident along Highway 99 just north of Airport Road on Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Sheriff’s patrols target an Everett hotspot of crime, poverty

Local businesses urged deputies to act, saying homelessness, vandalism and drug use are rampant at Airport Way and Highway 99.

Everett Police respond to an accident along Highway 99 just north of Airport Road on Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)