State epidemiologist says vaccinations and testing slowing spread of coronavirus

Utah’s State epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn said Thursday two of the most important decisions the state has made to slow the spread of COVID include vaccinations and testing.

”We have flooded 33 communities with rapid testing across the state of Utah following the holidays,” Dr. Dunn said during a media briefing on Thursday. “These are communities that had very high case counts or had very limited testing capacity. This is so we can identify individuals early on in their disease and slow the spread of COVID.”

Utah reported 11 new coronavirus deaths Thursday and there have now been 1,460 Utah coronavirus deaths since the the start of the pandemic.

The state’s Thursday report includes 2,742 new positives since Wednesday and, with 16,231 people tested, it results in a 16.9 percent positivity rate the last 24 hours.

There are 126 new COVID-19 positives Thursday in northern Utah. There have been 17,014 total cases in the Bear River district since the start of the outbreak.

A total of 600 patients in the district have been hospitalized: 425 of those are Cache County residents with 170 from Box Elder County and five from Rich County.

Among the 17,014 positive cases over the course of the pandemic in the Bear River District 14,800 have recovered.

The state’s rolling seven-day average for positive tests at 2,575 and the rolling seven-day average for percent of positive laboratory tests at 26 percent.

The state reported a total of 133,202 vaccines have been administered as of Thursday, an increase of 8,318 more than Wednesday.

Utah’s new total for COVID-19 positive tests since the start of the pandemic in March has now reached 317,559. Over the course of the pandemic there have been 1,871,616 tests administered in Utah, 86,047 of them in the Bear River Health District.

Across the state current hospitalizations Thursday remained steady at 559 and the state reports 194  in intensive care beds.

The latest Idaho report indicates there are 152,364 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state. There have been 1,564 COVID deaths in Idaho with 978 positive tests in Franklin County, 310 positives in Bear Lake County and 276 in Oneida County.

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