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Coronavirus hits a sixth Utah resident, from Salt Lake County; 2 Summit County tourists also diagnosed

(Image courtesy CDC) This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). This virus was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China.

Editor’s note: The Salt Lake Tribune is providing readers free access to critical local stories about the coronavirus during this time of heightened concern. See more coverage here.

UPDATE: New patient in Summit County shows community spread of coronavirus, state says; state total at 9 cases

Summit County has two more cases of COVID-19 — and both of them are out-of-state visitors who don’t count toward the state’s total. But with the addition Friday of a patient diagnosed in Salt Lake County, six Utah residents have come down with the disease.

The Summit County patients are both men between the ages of 18 and 60, the Summit County Health Department reported Friday. They came to Summit County from out of state, but not together.

The men exhibited mild symptoms of the disease caused by the coronavirus. Beyond that, the county won’t say anything else about them, citing patient privacy concerns.

Summit County had reported its first case, a resident male between 18 and 60, on Wednesday. It later reported a second case, an out-of-state visitor, also a male between 18 and 60. Both have mild symptoms, and are self-isolating.

The latest patient added to the state total — which includes only state residents — had traveled to New York recently, Angela Dunn, the state epidemiologist, said Friday at a news conference.

In a news release later Friday, the Salt Lake County Health Department said it is in the process of contacting anyone who may have had close contact with that patient. Each of the three patients recorded in the county had “traveled to a location experiencing community transmission,” it said, adding that “we have not identified community transmission of COVID-19 in Salt Lake County.”

The state lab is up to processing 82 tests a day now, Dunn said; that’s 41 patients, since each person typically gets two swabs, one in the nose and one in the throat. Three hundred tests have now been completed there; that does not include testing being done at commercial labs.

Summit County health officials also are working to track anyone who may have been in contact with the two new visitor patients. Those contacts will be monitored by public health professionals for symptoms related to COVID-19: fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Salt Lake County’s other two cases are Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, whose diagnosis shocked the sports world and prompted the suspension of the National Basketball Association’s season Wednesday, and his teammate Donovan Mitchell.

Starting Monday, the Summit County Health Department will only make weekly announcements of confirmed cases, every Tuesday before noon Mountain time.

(Christopher Cherrington | The Salt Lake Tribune)

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