Another 1,722 Utahns Test Positive For Coronavirus, With 5 New Deaths
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Department of Health reported less than 2,000 new coronavirus cases in the last day. Five more Utahns have died of COVID-19, and 564 people were hospitalized.
The latest COVID-19 deaths in Utah included one women and four men. The woman was a Wasatch County resident between the ages of 65 to 84. Officials said she was hospitalized at the time of her death.
Three of the men were from Utah County. Two were between the ages of 65 to 84. The third was older than 85. All three were being treated in the hospital when they died.
A Salt Lake County man older than 85 also died. Officials said he was a resident of a long-term care facility.
The Utah Department of Health reported that a total of 1,418,227 residents have been tested for COVID-19 – an increase of 6,143 since Friday.
Of those, a total of 193,809 have tested positive for the virus – an increase of 1,722 cases since Saturday.
The rolling seven-day average for positive tests was 2,354 per day, and the rolling seven-day average for percent of positive laboratory tests was 21.4 percent.
The rate of positive tests since Friday was 28.8 percent.
The health department reported 564 people were being treated for COVID-19 in Utah hospitals. Total hospitalizations since the pandemic began was 8,076 people. 7,458 people.
Myths & Misconceptions
The KSL Investigates team responded to claims that the numbers reported by the Utah Department of Health were inflated.
They also looked into claims that anyone who died of other causes, but happened to be positive for the virus at the time of their death, was included in the health department’s numbers, regardless of the circumstances of their death.
Health officials said that’s not the case.
“About 15-18 percent of all deaths go through the medical examiner,” said Becky Ward, a health educator with the Department of Health’s Bureau of Epidemiology. “It’s not unusual, it’s not atypical, but we want to make sure [COVID-19] deaths are verified and certified as a cause of death.”
Ward said every deceased person whose body goes to the medical examiner receives a COVID-19 test. However, if the autopsy does not reveal that COVID-19 was the cause of death, it is not listed as such.
“It will not just automatically be listed as the cause of death,” she continued.
Myth: “The Flu is Worse Than COVID”
The KSL Investigators also wanted to find truth with the notion that the flu is worse than COVID.
“COVID is so much more serious,” Ward told KSL TV. “It spreads easier, and it is more infectious.”
According to Utah’s influenza report, the 2017-2018 flu season was the most severe of the last six years, with a cumulative hospitalization rate of 71.06 per 100,000 Utahns.
Ward said hospitalizations from COVID-19 since March 2020 have had a cumulative rate of 213.95 per 100,000 Utahns – three times higher that of the flu.
“What we have been seeing is that COVID causes more hospitalizations, and it has caused more deaths,” said Ward.
According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2018 showed 353 Utahns died from both influenza and pneumonia that year.
COVID-19 has already killed more than twice that number in Utah, with nearly 868 deaths as a result of the virus.
There have been nearly 13.3 million confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, and 266,000 people have died of the disease, according to numbers compiled by the Coronavirus Resource Center at John Hopkins University.
Across the globe there have been 62.5 million cases and close to 1.5 million deaths.
With just 4 percent of the worldwide population, the United States has accounted for 21 percent of all confirmed cases and 18 percent of all deaths.
The first US case was confirmed on January 21, 2020. The number of new cases in the nation has skyrocketed in November, with a spike significantly higher than any other country.
Brittany Glas and Cindy St. Clair contributed to this report.
Have you or a family member been affected by coronavirus issues in Utah? KSL wants to hear from you. Contact KSL by emailing email@example.com.
What is COVID-19? Here’s What You Need To Know To Stay Healthy: ksltv.com/432037/what-is-covid-19/
Latest coronavirus stories from KSL can be found at ksltv.com/coronavirus/.
Where in the world has the coronavirus already appeared? See the map: ksltv.com/?p=432035
Your Life Your Health: How can parents prepare their home, children against coronavirus: ksltv.com/?p=432060
How do I prevent it?
The CDC has some simple recommendations, most of which are the same for preventing other respiratory illnesses or the flu:
- Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
- Avoid touching your face
- Stay home when you are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
- If soap and water is not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
The CDC does not recommend wearing a facemask respirator to protect yourself from coronavirus unless a healthcare professional recommends it.
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