SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases doesn’t appear to be slowing down as the state reported 553 new positive cases on Tuesday.
A higher-than-average number of new test results were reported — 6,848, with a positive rate of 8.1%.
Now 22,217 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Utah since the pandemic began out of 340,753 tests, a positive rate of 6.5%, according to the Utah Department of Health.
Four more deaths were also reported Tuesday. Health officials identified them as a Salt Lake County woman between ages of 65-84; a Washington County man between 18-44; a Weber County woman between 45-64; and a San Juan County man between 51-65.
All four were hospitalized when they died. They bring the state’s death toll to 172.
The rising cases and increase in hospitalizations prompted state officials to continue urging Utahns to wear face masks. Salt Lake County and Summit County remain the only areas in the state with mask mandates.
“COVID-19 cases threaten our economy and our ability to ensure hospital care to people who need it. Everyone should wear a mask to protect those around you, practice physical distancing, stay home if they’re sick, and wash their hands regularly,” the Utah COVID-19 Community Task Force, which has been making recommendations to state leaders in the pandemic, said Monday afternoon on Twitter.
A systemwide face mask requirement will go into effect Wednesday on all Utah Transit Authority trains, buses and other public spaces. Masks will soon become available on transit vehicles to those who don’t have them, UTA officials said in a statement. They are now available for pickup at UTA Customer Service locations, or riders can also call customer service at 801-743-3882 and request a mask by mail.
Just under 12,400 people have recovered from the novel coronavirus in Utah after passing the three-week point since their diagnoses.
Due to the spike in cases, TestUtah added a new testing location Tuesday at Kearns Oquirrh Park for underserved communities, officials said.
Current hospital capacity
In Utah, 27 more people required hospitalization for the disease since Monday’s report. Current hospitalizations with the novel coronavirus now stand at 205 — 83 of whom are in intensive care units. ICUs throughout the state are 62.4% full, but non-ICU use has risen more than 10% within the past three days.
Now, 65.3% of non-ICU hospital beds are in use compared to 53.6% on Saturday.
Of the state’s nearly 1,300 ventilators, 184 are being used by COVID-19 patients and others.
Eleven of the new hospitalizations Tuesday occurred in Salt Lake County; eight in Utah County; five in southwest Utah; and one each in the Bear River health district, San Juan County, Summit County and the Weber-Morgan health district.
As more people get back into the office after Utah loosened its restrictions in mid-May, workplace outbreaks have drastically risen. On June 15, outbreaks of the novel coronavirus at 226 workplaces accounted for 1,776 cases and 10 deaths.
Now, 296 workplaces have seen spread of the disease leading to 2,324 cases. The number of deaths linked to workplaces still stands at 10. The median age of patients who contracted COVID-19 at work is 39.
Meanwhile, 518 residents and 454 health care workers at long-term care facilities have tested positive for the coronavirus. Nineteen facilities have active cases, most of which are in Salt Lake and Utah counties.
The latest breakdown of Utah cases, hospitalizations and deaths by health district:
- Salt Lake County, 11,116; 791 hospitalized; 107 deaths.
- Utah County, 4,084; 209 hospitalized; 22 deaths.
- Bear River (Box Elder, Cache, Rich), 1,521; 52 hospitalized; 2 deaths.
- Southwest Utah, 1,519; 99 hospitalized; 11 deaths.
- Davis County, 1,179; 79 hospitalized; 5 deaths.
- Weber-Morgan, 954; 68 hospitalized; 13 deaths.
- Summit County, 488; 47 hospitalized; 0 deaths.
- San Juan County, 399; 52 hospitalized; 9 deaths.
- Wasatch County, 408; 20 hospitalized; 3 deaths.
- Tooele County, 244; 12 hospitalized; 0 deaths.
- Central Utah, 169; 11 hospitalized; 0 deaths.
- TriCounty (Uinta Basin), 50; 3 hospitalized; 0 deaths.
- Southeast Utah, 36; 1 hospitalized; 0 deaths.