Utah COVID-19 metrics remain low as state prepares to stop daily updates

The number of new cases, deaths and hospitalizations continued to decline Wednesday.

(Rachel Rydalch | The Salt Lake Tribune) A COVID-19 testing site is pictured along Guardsman Way in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022.

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Utah reported 133 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, marking the 22nd day in a row that the state’s daily case count was below 200.

Including Wednesday’s tally, there have been a total of 927,649 coronavirus cases reported in Utah since the pandemic began — amounting to about one case for every 3.5 Utahns.

The state also reported three more deaths Wednesday, one of which occurred before Feb. 28. Utah’s coronavirus death toll now stands at 4,714.

As daily case counts remain relatively low, the state plans to shut down many testing facilities and transition to a more “long-term, sustainable response” to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Utah Department of Health has said.

Before visiting a testing site, UDOH advised people to visit coronavirus.utah.gov/utah-covid-19-testing-locations for the latest information on operating hours, types of tests offered at each site, cost and more.

After Thursday, the state will no longer release daily COVID-19 data. Instead, the state will update its dashboard once a week on Thursdays, UDOH said.

Tests, hospitalizations declining

The average number of new COVID-19 cases reported per day so far in March is 153. The average in the past week is 114.

The number of COVID-19 tests administered each day remains relatively low. In January, at the height of the omicron variant spike, upward of 40,000 tests were being performed each day. On Wednesday, the state reported 6,137 tests in the past day.

The number of people hospitalized in Utah with COVID-19 was 95, two fewer than on Tuesday. There are 19 coronavirus patients in intensive care units — one fewer than reported on Monday and Tuesday.

According to UDOH, 62.4% of Utah’s ICU beds are filled, which falls below the 85% threshold that healthcare workers have said is needed to have enough rooms, equipment and staff available to treat new patients. COVID-19 patients make up 5.8% of the state’s ICU patients.

The state reported 2,214 more vaccines dose administered on Wednesday, bringing the total to 5,005,320.

State data shows 61.5% of Utahns were fully vaccinated as of Wednesday. But only 27.6% of all Utahns have received a booster dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

A UDOH analysis continues to show that booster shots significantly decrease Utahns’ chances of dying of COVID-19. Over the past four weeks:

• An unvaccinated person who contracts the virus is 2.6 times more likely to die than a fully vaccinated person, and 9.3 times more likely than a boosted person.

• An unvaccinated person who contracts the virus is 1.9 times as likely to be hospitalized as a fully vaccinated person, and 4.5 times more likely than a boosted person.

• An unvaccinated person is 1.9 as likely to contract the virus than a fully vaccinated person, and 1.8 times more likely than a boosted person.

Find where to get vaccinated at coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution.

Breakdown of updated figures

Vaccine doses administered in the past day/total doses administered • 2,214 / 5,005,320

Number of Utahns fully vaccinated • 1,999,754 — 61.5% of Utah’s total population. That is an increase of 488 in the past day.

Cases reported during the past day • 133.

Tests reported in the past day • A total of 6,137 people were tested.

Deaths reported in the past day • Three. One of the deaths occurred before Feb. 28.

The three deaths were a Box Elder County man between the ages of 45-64; a Weber County man 65-84; and a Davis County man 85 or older.

Hospitalizations reported in the past day • 95. That is two fewer than reported on Tuesday. Of those currently hospitalized, 19 are in intensive care, one fewer than reported on Tuesday.

Percentage of positive tests • Under the state’s original method, the rate was 4.4% over the past day. That is slightly higher than the seven-day average of 4%.

The state’s newer method counts all test results, including repeated tests of the same individual. Wednesday’s rate was 2.2%, slightly lower than the seven-day average of 2.7%.

Totals to date • 927,782 cases; 4,714 deaths; 34,020 hospitalizations; 9,406,861 tests administered.