Utah Coronavirus Cases Increasing, But Slower Than Some Earlier Models
“We're up to 1,675 Cova 19 cases in Utah,” Dr. Angela Dunn, Utah state epidemiologist, in Monday’s daily briefing. “That's an increase of 70 from yesterday. It's important to not focus on individual daily numbers at this point in the outbreak and really focus on the trends over the past couple weeks. The low number reported yesterday is likely a reflection of low testing over the weekend.”
Dunn said Utah is holding steady at about a 5% positive rate for coronavirus testing. Some of the models predicting the number of COVID-19 related deaths and positive tests for the state have been decreasing and Dunn said this is because the state is holding steady at a less than 10% hospitalization rate and because of the younger population.
“We have a large percentage of our population that's less than age 65 years, so we have less risk for severe outcomes due to COVID-19,” Dunn said. “However, we're always preparing for the worst case scenario in case those projections don't hold true so that we will be prepared for the excess care that's needed if there is a surge on our hospital systems.”
In relation to testing capacity for the state, Dunn said labs are able to test just over 4,000 people a day. While efforts are being made to increase that count, she said the supplies needed to actually test people need to be increased too.
“If we were to continue testing at this rate, we'd have supplies for about another week,” Dunn said. “But we have ordered additional swabs and viral media and are looking at alternative methods for those supplies to ensure that we continuously have the capacity to to test.”