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Utah News

State Officials Urge Caution As ICUs Continue To Fill

A person is tested for COVID.
Raimond Spekking
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Governor Gary Herbert reiterated the importance of Utah’s public health order in a press conference on Thursday as cases in the state continue to rise.

“I can’t believe I’m saying this but we all need to start acting like high school athletes," said Dr. Angela Dunn. "They have something they care about, and they’re protecting their ability to keep playing. So find that thing that you care about.”

Dunn joined Gov. Herbert at a Thursday press conference to give updates on the current state of the pandemic. The state reported an additional 3919 cases on Thursday. 

Dunn said it is important to follow guidelines in the public health order as closely as students in schools—especially student athletes who have been able to keep case numbers low. 

An issue the state faces because of the great number of cases is less room for care in hospitals across Utah who are currently at an ICU capacity of 87.5 percent. 

“If we keep admitting 90 to 100 patients a day, then we just can’t handle that, certainly in the ICU," Greg Bell said.

Greg Bell is the president and CEO of the Utah Hospital Association and spoke at the press conference as well.

Bell said most hospitals have exhausted every resource they have in order to care for patients and any effort to slow the spread of the virus helps. 

According to Bell, hospitals have opened up additional ICU beds and Intermountain Healthcare has hired an additional 200 nurses to help with increasing demands in hospitals.