In May, the Utah legislature voted to ban school districts from requiring masks in classrooms. Now it is up to local health departments to help schools combat COVID-19.

On Sunday, the Navajo Nation reported 18 more COVID-19 cases, but no additional deaths for the eighth consecutive day.

The number of COVID-19 cases surged back above 1,000 Wednesday, which is more than six times higher than one month ago when there were only 161 new cases. In addition, the rolling seven-day average is now 907, the highest since mid-February.

Primary Children’s Hospital is preparing to see more COVID-19 cases as young students return to school. The hospital usually has surge plans in place for the flu and RSV, but now COVID-19 must be planned and prepared for as well.

Executive director of the Salt Lake County Health Department Dr. Angela Dunn told county commissioners Tuesday she’s expecting a child to be hospitalized every other day during the upcoming school year unless serious measures are put into place to prevent COVID-19 transmission in schools.

The number of people in Utah hospitals with COVID-19 is at its highest point since February of this year, but there are only half as many cases today than there were earlier this year.

Utah’s public-school year is set to begin next month, yet no official plans for COVID-19 guidelines have been released.

Jessica Preece

In preparation for students returning to campus, a group of faculty, staff and students at Brigham Young University are working together to hold off-campus vaccination clinics.

USU Issues "Safety Alert" On Rising COVID Cases

Jul 14, 2021

In response to rising numbers of COVID cases in Utah in recent days, including an uptick at Utah State University, the university administration on Tuesday issued the following "safety alert":

The record high temperatures in Utah have more people than normal heading to emergency rooms seeking relief from the heat.

Tabernacle Choir Returns

Jul 9, 2021

After more than a year away, the Tabernacle Choir will return to Temple Square on Monday, July 19. The Tabernacle Choir halted productions in March 2020 amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.  Daily organ recitals will continue and will be open to the public in the Tabernacle starting July 19.

No new coronavirus cases and vaccination numbers were released over the weekend due to the Independence Day holiday, but Utah remains front and center nationally as the delta variant continues to spread rapidly throughout the state.

State health officials and healthcare workers across the state have seen a recent surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations over the past week.


A few months ago we talked with several Covid-19 long haulers. They said that some continued to suffer debilitating effects of the disease months after being infected with the virus. Many long haulers say they had active lifestyles prior to getting sick, but they are nowhere near getting back to normal. Today we’re going to check back in with Lisa O’Brien, founder of a Utah COVID-19 Long Haulers group. We’ll also be talking to Dr. Brayden Yellman of the Bateman Horne Center and Dr. Jeanette Brown, Director of the new post-COVID care clinic at the University of Utah. 

With hot temperatures comes high ozone levels, which tend to present breathing problems, according to doctors from Intermountain Healthcare. Coming out of a pandemic, this is especially concerning for those who have or who are currently battling COVID-19.

According to a report from Deseret News, the state of Utah spent more than $6.7 billion in federal funds in the year of the COVID-19 pandemic. This number has State Auditor John Dougall concerned about the future reliance Utah could have on federal subsidies. 

Utah State University

UPR broadcasts a weekly interview with Utah State University President Noelle Cockett, checking in on whatever is happening at the university that week. Earlier you heard the condensed version of this conversation. Today on Access Utah we’ll hear the full interview. We’ll talk about new rules at USU regarding face masks, vaccination rates, transitioning to a more-normal life, and we’ll look ahead to the fall.


Mask mandates in schools was one of the 22 topics approved for the special session of the Utah State Legislature on Wednesday. 

What To Expect This Year At The Farmer's Market

May 19, 2021

Music may be something you missed from last year’s farmer’s markets as markets across the state implemented new rules to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Utah won’t require masks to be worn in K-12 schools during the final week of classes, Gov. Spencer Cox announced Thursday. However, he added local school districts could choose to continue the mandate if they felt it was appropriate, according to Deseret News.


Political scientists Erika Allen Wolters and Brent Steel have written that the United States is experiencing a political era in which facts are fluid and the truth is subjective, and that the consequences of ideology trumping science can be devastating. And they wrote that back in 2017. This week we’ll talk to them about how their fears have shifted in the past four years.

In a Facebook town hall on Tuesday night, Gov. Spencer Cox said he is happy with the low COVID-19 case counts. He said hospitalizations and deaths have almost disappeared completely. 

Utah lawmakers passed a bill earlier this year that prohibited government agencies from mandating COVID-19 vaccines, however, it didn’t say the government couldn’t provide incentives for getting a shot. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, that is exactly what Gov. Spencer Cox wants to do. 

Gov. Cox announced on Tuesday that federal unemployment programs tied to the pandemic will end in Utah next month. This includes the $300 weekly stimulus payment and other federal unemployment programs. 

ARUP Laboratories

The University of Utah recently partnered with two Utah laboratories to produce an inexpensive coronavirus antibody test, in the form of a mobile app.

On Monday, The Food and Drug administration granted its approval for administering the Prizer COVID-19 vaccine to children and teens as young as 12 years old. On Wednesday, a CDC advisory committee is expected to issue final guidance on how to effectively administer the vaccine, according to KUTV.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury has released its spending amounts and guidelines for the $350 billion in pandemic relief funding, and roughly $2.5 billion is coming to Utah, according to a report from KUTV.

Utah Reports 207 COVID-19 Cases, One New Death

May 10, 2021

The Utah Department of Health’s Monday COVID-19 report shows an increase of 207 confirmed cases and one new death. 

According to a new qualitative brief from the Utah Women and Leadership Project, which has been studying COVID-19 impacts on Utah women, career advancement opportunities have been slim among the state’s women since the pandemic began.


With Utah lifting COVID restrictions, businesses are seeing an increase in customers, but restaurants in Cache Valley say they’re struggling to hire staff to fill the demand.