Another 26 Utahns die of COVID-19

The positivity rate falls to 17.9% on Tuesday.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Edna Moss, an administrator for Leadership Learning Academy, gets her COVID-19 vaccine as the Davis County School District begins vaccinations for its teachers and staff at the Davis County Legacy Center in Farmington on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. Moss said she hates needles, and marveled that she didn't feel a thing getting her shot.

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The number of COVID-19 related deaths reported in Utah leaped past 1,400 on Tuesday — although more than half of the new fatalities happened at least three weeks ago. And the state reported its lowest positivity rate in weeks.

Vaccinations reported in past day/total vaccinations • 6,983 / 110,530

Cases reported in past day • 2,146.

Deaths reported in past day • 26. However, 15 of those deaths occurred before Dec. 22 and are being reported now because, according to the Utah Department of Health, the Office of the Medical Examiner “conducts thorough investigations of all potential COVID-related deaths,” which “can take several weeks to complete.”

The deaths reported Tuesday • Of the 26 deaths, all but two were 65 and older. There were 10 deaths in Salt Lake County (one woman age 45-64, two women and three men age 64-85, and three women and one man 85 or older); four deaths in Utah County (three women age 64-84, and one woman 85 or older); three deaths in Davis County (one woman and one man 65-84, and one woman 85 or older); three deaths in Weber County (one woman 45-64, and one woman and one man 85 or older); two deaths in Washington County (one woman and one man 85 or older); and one death each in Millard County (a woman 45-64); Tooele County (a man 65-84); Iron County (a man 85 or older); and Cache County (a man 85 or older).

Hospitalizations reported in past day • 560. That’s up six from Monday. Of those currently hospitalized, 187 are in intensive care units — two fewer than on Monday.

Tests reported in past day • 11,991.

Percentage of positive tests • 17.9%. This is well below the seven-day average of 29.3%.

Totals to date • 309,629 cases; 1,422 deaths; 12,059 hospitalizations; 1,843,113 tests.

Utah teachers started receiving the COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday. Doses will be limited to a few thousand teachers statewide at first, with more available quickly, state officials expected last week. Gov. Spencer Cox asked school districts to put older teachers and staffers — who are more vulnerable to serious complications if they get infected — at the head of the line.