Follow this page for the latest news and numbers regarding coronavirus in Salt Lake County.
COVID-19 update for July 14, 2020
As case counts continue to climb, Utah’s medical community is asking state leaders to mandate face coverings across the state. On July 10, healthcare representatives held a press conference to voice concern about the continuing rise of cases in the state.
According to KUER, Mark Briesacher, chief physician executive at Intermountain Healthcare, expressed concern on the impact to the healthcare system, with ICU beds statewide currently at 72% capacity.
“I don’t view this as a political question. This is about people. This is the time to come together, that’s the way that we will get ahead of this,” stated Briesacher.
Utah reported 546 new cases on Monday.
Daily chart of total COVID-19 cases in Salt Lake County. (Data courtesy of Artcompiler)
Daily chart of new COVID-19 cases in Salt Lake County. (Data courtesy of Artcompiler)
Daily chart of total COVID-19 deaths in Salt Lake County. (Data courtesy of Artcompiler)
Daily chart of new COVID-19 deaths in Salt Lake County. (Data courtesy of Artcompiler)
COVID-19 update for July 10, 2020
During a weekly media briefing on Thursday, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert announced that face coverings will be required at all K-12 schools in the state this fall. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, the mandate will apply to school buses as well.
The Utah Department of Health reported 601 new coronavirus cases and four additional deaths on Thursday.
During the briefing, Herbert stated he would not issue a statewide mandate at this time, instead issuing a challenge to the people of Utah to wear face masks when social distancing is not possible.
“I’m going to give the people of Utah the opportunity to show what kind of people they are,” he said.
COVID-19 update for July 7, 2020
On June 27, mandates went into effect in Salt Lake and Summit counties that require citizens to wear face coverings when social distancing is not practical. The Salt Lake County Health Department extended the order through Aug. 20.
COVID-19 update for June 26, 2020
COVID-19 continues to spread in Utah, as health officials reported 676 new cases Friday, the highest single-day total since the pandemic began.
On Wednesday, Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson submitted a request to permit Salt Lake County to require masks be worn in retail and commercial establishments. Summit County submitted a similar request Thursday.
Gov. Gary Herbert approved both requests late Thursday. The mandates begin Saturday.
COVID-19 update for June 23, 2020
“If we do not reach a rolling 7-day average of 200/cases per day by July 1, we need to move the entire state to orange. This will send the message to Utahns that this outbreak continues to be a serious problem, and state leadership is committed to saving lives and preventing a complete economic shutdown,” state epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn wrote in a brief published on June 19.
According to the Deseret News, Utah averaged 471 daily positive cases during the past seven days.
COVID-19 update for June 12, 2020
The Utah Department of Health reported 325 new COVID-19 cases and 8 additional deaths on June 12. The state has seen 200-plus new daily positive coronavirus cases since May 28.
“There is a more relaxed attitude towards physical distancing and face coverings and staying home when we’re ill. And right now, the risk of spread of COVID-19 is higher than it’s ever been in this epidemic,” state epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn said during a COVID-19 press conference on June 11.
On June 12, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert issued an executive order that allows Kane County to enter the “green” or “new normal” risk level, the first part of the state to enter the designation. Salt Lake City will remain in the “orange” (moderate) risk level, and the rest of the state is under the “yellow” (low) risk level.
-Amie Schaeffer and Globe Staff
COVID-19 update for June 9, 2020
On Monday, June 8, the Utah Department of Health reported 256 new COVID-19 cases. The previous Saturday, June 6, Utah set a record for the daily increase of positive COVID-19 cases with 546 new documented cases.
On June 5, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert released a statement regarding the coronavirus risk level assessment for the state, saying in part: “Common sense requires keeping our current health risk guidance in place. We all want to return to more normal patterns of life as soon as possible, but we also do not want to take a step back in our progress against this disease and our reactivation of the economy. A marked increase in disease incidence and in hospitalizations due to COVID-19 give us pause. We will continue to analyze data trends with an eye toward balancing overall health risks and protecting high risk populations.”
COVID-19 update for June 5, 2020
Tasked with reopening the Utah ecomony, the Public Health and Economic Emergency Commission recommended that the state move to the “green” or “new normal” coronavirus risk level as early as this weekend.
Meanwhile, Utah has seen a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases over the last week, with daily numbers increasing in the triple digits. On June 4, the Utah Department of Health reported 316 new confirmed cases, bringing the total amount to 10,813.
“This past week, we’ve had a sharp spike in cases, and it’s not explained easily by a single outbreak or an increase in testing,” state epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn said during a June 3 press conference. She also called it a “state-wide trend.”
COVID-19 update for June 2, 2020
On June 1, the state of Utah recorded 202 new positive COVID-19 cases, according to the Utah Department of Health. The total confirmed cases sits at 99,999. The Salt Lake Tribune reports this number is in line with a five-day trend of daily totals hitting the 200 mark.
Most of Utah remains under the low-risk phase. Last week, on May 27, Gov. Gary Herbert issued a new executive order in which he “strongly encourages” the continued use of facemasks in public.
COVID-19 update for May 29, 2020
Utah continues to have an active week regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. The Utah Department of Health reported two deaths on May 28, bringing the total to 106. The state’s number of confirmed cases sits at 8,921.
While most of Utah moved to the “yellow” or low-risk category earlier this month, Salt Lake Community College campuses stayed in the “orange” or moderate-risk category. On June 1, the SLCC campuses will shift to “yellow” and re-open for normal business hours.
COVID-19 update for May 26, 2020
As we come back from the long weekend, the majority of Utah remains in the “yellow” or low-risk category regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. In Salt Lake County, Magna, Salt Lake City and West Valley City remain in the “orange” or moderate-risk level.
As the state eases coronavirus restrictions, Utah has seen an increase in both cases and deaths in the past few weeks, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. The Utah Department of Health reported 8,620 total confirmed cases and 101 deaths on Tuesday.
COVID-19 update for May 22, 2020
Utah has seen an uptick in COVID-19 activity this week. On May 18, the state reported eight COVID-19-related deaths, the highest count in a single day.
On May 20, Gov. Gary Herbert announced Utah Leads Together 3.0, which lays out Utah’s plans for health and economic recovery. According to ABC4 News, the plan focuses on repairing economic damage, protecting high-risk citizens and addressing the needs in multicultural communities.
COVID-19 update for May 19, 2020
Salt Lake County announced that playgrounds, dog parks, pickleball courts, skate parks, open fields, paths and trails in cities currently under a “yellow” or low-risk level for coronavirus have reopened with social distance requirements. Restrooms in parks will be available as well.
The “yellow” phase, however, has not been implemented in Salt Lake City, West Valley City, and Magna. Originally designated to move to the “yellow” phase, Magna requested to remain in the “orange” or moderate-risk level. These municipalities will wait until later this month to reevaluate and decide whether to move to the low-risk level.
On Monday, the Salt Lake Tribune reported that Utah counted 146 new COVID-19 cases and zero new deaths from the previous day.
COVID-19 update for May 15, 2020
Just two weeks after announcing a shift to the “orange” or moderate-risk phase for COVID-19, Utah officials announced at a May 14 press conference that most of the state will move to “yellow” or low risk. This change is effective at 12:01 a.m. on May 16.
“I like our numbers. We’ve plateaued,” Gov. Gary Herbert stated during the video conference.
In Salt Lake County, the cities of Salt Lake and West Valley, along with Summit, Wasatch and Grand counties, will remain in the “orange” phase.
On May 14, Utah’s reported number of positive cases in a 24-hour period went up by 129, bringing the state’s total to 6,749. The number of reported deaths total 75 for the state.
COVID-19 update for May 12, 2020
As Utah enters the second week of the “moderate risk” phase, the numbers of new cases since that time have remained relatively static.
According to the Utah Department of Health, as of May 11, Utah had an increase of 111 people testing positive for the virus, bringing the total to 6,326. The state also reported the death of a patient under the age of 60, bringing that toll to 68.
“We’ve definitely maintained a plateau for a couple weeks and that is a good sign,” stated Utah Department of Health state epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn during a COVID-19 press conference on May 11.
While the steady numbers are promising, Dunn cautioned before relaxing social distancing restrictions any further, state authorities are looking for the cases in Utah to show a distinct decrease.
COVID-19 update for May 8, 2020
Utah has now been in the moderate risk phase for almost one week. Since that time, Salt Lake County has seen 386 new cases. During the week of April 24-30, the county saw 463 which indicates people are still contracting the virus at a static rate. According to a report by KUER, Utah’s seven-day average rate of increase sits at 2.96%.
COVID-19 update for May 7, 2020
According to the Utah Department of Health, people ages 25-44, and 45-64 make up the majority of those diagnosed with COVID-19. Of the two groups, men are contracting the virus at a higher rate than women.
Out of the 2,227 (40% of total cases) people aged 25-44 that tested positive for the virus, men make up 1,198, while women make up 1,027. In the group aged 45-64 there is a slightly bigger disparity between the sexes with 1,656 (30% of total cases) people being diagnosed, 909 of which are men, while 747 are women.
State data also shows that, despite the age 25-64 demographic making up the majority of the cases, contracting the virus ￼is most likely to result ￼in hospitalization for older citizens. People between the ages of 65-84 are hospitalized 24.9% of the time and those older than 84 are hospitalized 26.2% of the time. We can compare this to those aged 25-44 of whom only 5.3% visit the hospital and individuals aged 45-64 of whom 11.2% require hospitalization.
COVID-19 update for May 6, 2020
On May 1, Salt Lake County moved from a “high risk” to “moderate risk” phase. As a result, Utahns have been wondering if this would have an effect on the number of COVID-19 cases.
The amount of total cases is still climbing, however, it is growing at a rate similar to what was experienced before changes were implemented.
COVID-19 update for May 5, 2020
TestUtah, the organization charged with the task of testing Utahns for COVID-19, is under scrutiny.
The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the rate of positive results among people tested at TestUtah sites is less than half what it is for patients tested elsewhere in the state.
The Tribune said several reasons are being hypothesized for the low number of positive tests. A focal point of concern involves a lack of testing people who are showing symptoms, as well as a lack of people self-reporting to qualify for the test.
“I worry about having tests routed to a small community hospital lab inexperienced with highly complex molecular testing that uses a test from an unknown company without much in vitro diagnostic experience,” Bert Lopansri, a specialist in infectious diseases and microbiology at Intermountain Healthcare, wrote in an email obtained by the Tribune.
As TestUtah continues their testing, state officials are keeping a keen eye on the results to ensure their accuracy.
COVID-19 update for May 4, 2020
Businesses started reopening their doors in Salt Lake County after the state of Utah entered the “moderate risk” phase for COVID-19. What does this mean for high-risk Utahns?
According to Utah Coronavirus Task Force website, high-risk individuals are categorized as:
- People age 65 or over.
- People who live in a nursing home or long term care facility.
- People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma.
- People who have serious heart conditions.
- People who are immunocompromised.
- People of any age with severe obesity or certain underlying medical conditions, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, or liver disease.
- People who are pregnant should be monitored, although data on COVID-19 has not shown increased risk.
If you know a high-risk individual or fall under one of the above categories yourself, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for additional guidelines.
COVID-19 update for May 2, 2020
This begs the question: Should Salt Lake County loosen the restrictions currently in place?
Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall addressed the concern on KSL News Radio, saying: “Salt Lake City doesn’t exist in a bubble, and we can’t sequester ourselves from the things that are going to be allowed to happen all around the county and surrounding us. So it doesn’t actually make sense for us economically to stay in the red zone … if everyone else around us will be opening.”
Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson announced that despite the county reopening with the rest of the state, the county will implement certain requirements to ensure the safety of the public.
COVID-19 update for May 1, 2020
Utah is ramping up the amount of tests available statewide through an organization called TestUtah. According to the TestUtah website, Utahns who are showing symptoms, have been in physical contact with someone who had the virus, or have traveled to a place where the virus is prominent will be more likely to qualify for testing.
As Utah transitions from a “high risk” to “moderate risk” stage on May 1, residents are still being encouraged to maintain a sense of caution when out in public.
COVID-19 update for April 30, 2020
Governor Gary Herbert announced April 28 that Utah would begin easing coronavirus-related restrictions. Certain non-essential services — including gyms, salons, and in-house dining at restaurants — are on the list of oncoming liberties being released. The decision comes roughly two months after the diagnosis of Utah’s patient zero.
Salt Lake County has seen a steady increase in the amount of total confirmed COVID-19 cases since the virus breached its borders. However, the county has also seen a steadying in the number of confirmed cases on a daily basis. Herbert attributes this to Utahns’ efforts in slowing the virus’s spread through the use of face masks, gloves, and social distancing.
About the Data
The Globe’s assignment editor, Jesse Dyer, works for a tech company called Artcompiler Inc. Dyer works on scoring engines for educational websites, data collection/interpretation, and generating visuals of said data.
“The coronavirus pandemic has provided Artcompiler Inc. with large scale data sets in real time. This has made for a pragmatic playground in which to test the depth and berth of our software, the capacity of our servers, and the aesthetic capabilities of our graph generator using numbers that global and local communities have a vested interest in,” Dyer says.
“Pulling data from and accrediting reliable sources lays the groundwork for me and my team to do what we are good at: writing code,” Dyer says.
As of now, Artcompiler can provide daily graphs for the twenty-eight days that proceed any given day that is posted on. These graphs have been automated to update in the morning on a daily basis. The numbers are pulled from the final report of the previous day via the sources above.