Utah again reports double-digit deaths from COVID-19

Another 10 Utahns have died of COVID-19.

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Lindsay Brown prepares a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a drive-thru event organized by the Utah County Health Department in Spanish Fork on Friday, Sept. 10, 2021.

Editor’s note: The Salt Lake Tribune is providing free access to critical stories about the coronavirus. Sign up for our Top Stories newsletter, sent to your inbox every morning. To support journalism like this, please donate or become a subscriber.

After two days of reporting well above 2,000 new coronavirus cases, that number has declined, according to the Utah Department of Health. But there were still 1,874 new cases reported Friday, and there have been more than 6,000 reported in the past three days.

The number of deaths also remained in double digits — 10 more Utahns died, following 14 deaths reported Thursday, 14 reported Wednesday, 11 reported Tuesday and 29 reported Monday from over the weekend.

Of those who died of COVID-19 last weekend was Unified Fire Authority Capt. Merrill Bone, who died Sunday at age 61, according to the UFA. Bone had been vaccinated against COVID-19, his son Travis Bone said — adding that his dad had been diagnosed with cancer, which had compromised his immune system.

The rolling seven-day average for positive tests stands at 1,540 per day.

In the first two days that children ages 5-11 were eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, 1,910 got the shot — 697 on Wednesday, and 1,213 on Thursday. That’s 0.5% of the kids in that age group who are eligible, according to UDOH. Public health officials have said wider availability of the child-sized does is expected Monday.

On Thursday, UDOH reported a total of 1,760,168 Utahns were fully vaccinated against the coronavirus. The next day, however, it reported 1,600 fewer people were fully vaccinated — an error that the Health Department said it is “working to resolve ... and determine why it happened.” A clarification wasn’t provided by Friday afternoon.

Intensive care units in the state remain near capacity. According to the Health Department, 93.1% of all ICU beds and 96.1% of ICU beds in larger medical centers are occupied. Of all ICU patients, 43.1% are being treated for COVID-19.

Vaccine doses administered in the past day/total doses administered • 8,400 / 3,803,135.

Cases reported in past day • 1,874.

Cases among school-age children • Kids in grades K-12 accounted for 407 of the new cases announced Thursday — 21.7% of the total. There were 212 cases reported in children aged 5-10; 98 cases in children 11-13; and 97 cases in children 14-18.

Tests reported in past day • 10,252 people were tested for the first time. A total of 20,633 people were tested.

Deaths reported in past day • 10.

There were three deaths in Washington County — a man between the ages of 45-64, a man 65-84, and a man 85-plus. There were also three deaths in Weber County — a man and a woman 45-64, and a woman 85-plus.

Two Box Elder County residents died — a man 65-84, and a woman 85-plus. And two counties each reported one death — a Carbon County woman 65-84, and a Duchesne County man 85-plus.

Hospitalizations reported in the past day • 573. That is one more than reported on Thursday. Of those currently hospitalized, 209 are in intensive care, seven fewer than on Thursday.

Percentage of positive tests • Under the state’s original method, the rate is 18.3% over the past day. That is higher than the seven-day average of 17.8%.

The state’s new method counts all test results, including repeated tests of the same individual. Friday’s rate was 9.1%, lower than the seven-day average of 11.7%.

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

Risk ratios • In the past four weeks, unvaccinated Utahns were 15.8 times more likely to die of COVID-19 than vaccinated people, according to a Utah Department of Health analysis. The unvaccinated also were 10.9 times more likely to be hospitalized and 4.8 times more likely to test positive for the coronavirus.

Totals to date • 560,604 cases; 3,286 deaths; 24,397 hospitalizations; 3,756,869 people tested.