Utah reports 232 COVID-19 cases and one death Sunday

Five hospitalized patients have been moved into intensive care units.

(Leah Hogsten | Tribune file photo) A vial of saline and the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is photographed at the Woods Cross High School pop-up clinic by Nomi Health, April 27, 2021.

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The rate of infection over the past seven days has risen slightly, as well as the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units, as reported by the Utah Department of Health on Sunday.

The state also reported one more death.

The number of Utahns fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Sunday is up more than 30,000 compared to the previous day.

Over the past week, Utah reached its latest milestone — more than a million residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The feat comes as the rate of people getting vaccinated in the state slows down.

Gov. Spencer Cox was joined by Dr. Angela Dunn on Thursday at her last COVID-19 briefing before she leaves her statewide post to lead the Salt Lake County Health Department.

Because Utah has reached its three “endgame” goals as defined by lawmakers, the statewide public health rules regarding COVID-19 were lifted last week. That is, except for K-12 schools.

“It is now really about personal responsibility,” Cox said on Thursday. He also previously urged Utahns to act respectfully in businesses that choose to maintain restrictions.

“My request, once again, is to show some empathy and some kindness,” he said. “There’s no right way to come out of a pandemic. Everybody is doing this at different speeds.”

A recent survey conducted by the Utah Department of Health showed that adults in some parts of the state are more hesitant to get the COVID-19 vaccine than others.

Among the reasons most often cited as a barrier to getting the vaccine, according to the UDOH survey:

• Concern about vaccine side effects.

• Concern that the vaccine was developed too quickly.

• A belief that COVID-19 is not a serious problem.

• A belief that COVID-19 isn’t a risk in their community.

• Worries about the cost of the vaccine.

• General opposition to vaccinations.

The data, which was gathered between Feb. 1 and May 1, according to UDOH, showed the two areas with the lowest likelihood of being vaccinated were in rural Utah. The Tri-County Health District, which covers Uintah, Duchesne and Daggett counties in northeast Utah, tallied a 50.6% likelihood. And San Juan County, in the state’s southeast corner, tallied a 52.2% likelihood of being vaccinated.

On Thursday, Cox signed an executive order removing the requirement that providers use all first doses of the vaccine within seven days of receiving them. Vaccine providers are still required to report to the state the number of vaccines administered each day and the number of doses on hand, and they may receive reduced supply if they don’t comply.

They must also establish procedures to offer the COVID-19 vaccine to people from marginalized communities.

On Wednesday, Salt Lake City received a visit from first lady Jill Biden, who spent time at Glendale Middle School and nearby Jordan Park for a pop-up vaccination clinic geared toward Utah’s Hispanic community.

Biden said it’s time to move vaccination efforts from mass clinics to neighborhoods — something Utah is in the process of doing.

“It feels like there is hope,” she said. “Things are going to get better.”

Vaccine doses administered in past day/total doses administered • 22,730 / 2,307,037.

Utahns fully vaccinated • 1,048,036.

Cases reported in past day • 232.

Deaths reported in past day • 1.

The person who died was a man from Salt Lake County, between the ages of 45 and 64.

Tests reported in past day • 3,558 people were tested for the first time. A total of 6,510 people were tested.

Hospitalizations reported in past day • 139. That’s the same as Saturday. Of those currently hospitalized, 63 are in ICUs, up five from Saturday — meaning those five people were already hospitalized.

Percentage of positive tests • Under the state’s original method, the rate is 6.5%. That’s higher than the seven-day average of 6.4%.

The state’s new method counts all test results, including repeated tests of the same individual. Sunday’s rate was 3.6%, higher than the seven-day average of 3.4%.

[Read more: Utah is changing how it measures the rate of positive COVID-19 tests. Here’s what that means.]

Totals to date • 400,352 cases; 2,224 deaths; 16,361 hospitalizations; 2,603,551 people tested.

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