COVID-19 case counts flatten after rising in Utah last week

A total of 953,577 residents have been fully vaccinated.

(Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune) Badger Norman, 17, a student at Woods Cross High School receives his first Pfizer vaccine at a pop-up clinic by Nomi Health, April 27, 2021. County and regional health districts are setting up vaccination clinics in high schools, to get the COVID-19 vaccine to 16 and 17-year-olds.

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Coronavirus cases were on the rise in Utah last week.

On Wednesday, the Utah Department of Health reported 518 new cases, marking the second day in a row that the number of cases eclipsed 500. On the same day, the state reported four deaths, the most in a single day in roughly a month. Those four deaths helped the statewide toll top 2,200 since the pandemic started, now sitting at 2,204 through Sunday.

But by the end of the seven-day period beginning April 26 and ending Sunday, things had started to flatten.

There was one death reported Saturday, and one more on Sunday. After reporting 410 cases on Saturday, the state announced just 279 on Sunday, bringing the total number of cases since the start of the pandemic to 398,012. The rolling seven-day average for positive cases through Sunday sits at 371.

A total of 953,577 Utahns are fully vaccinated, accounting for 29% of all Utahns and just shy of 40% of all residents eligible for the vaccine. There are now 1,309,080 residents who have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, which is 40% of all Utahns and 52.9% of those that are at least 16 years old.

With thousands of vaccination appointments going unfilled statewide, Gov. Spencer Cox last week announced that any Utah organization — including churches, workplaces and community groups — can now host a mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic, and the state will pay for it.

“We are shifting our approach to bring the vaccine directly to you,” Cox said at his weekly COVID-19 media briefing Thursday. “We will come to you, and at no cost to your organization. … We want to make it as easy as possible. We want to take away any excuses.”

The state will set aside 25,000 vaccine doses from this week’s allocation of doses for these mobile clinics, Cox said. He added that groups can go to the state’s website — coronavirus.utah.gov — to request a mobile clinic to come to their location.

The state is also bringing the vaccine to high school students, a group that includes over 100,000 young people ages 16 and 17. That ongoing effort hit Woods Cross High School last week.

Vaccine doses administered in past day/total doses administered • 8,364 / 2,174,205.

Utahns fully vaccinated • 953,577.

Cases reported in past day • 279.

Deaths reported in past day • 1.

The person who died was a Utah County man between the ages of 45 and 64 who was hospitalized at time of death.

Tests reported in past day • 4,129 people were tested for the first time. A total of 7,204 people were tested.

Hospitalizations reported in past day • 137. That’s down by one from Saturday. Of those currently hospitalized, 54 are in intensive care units, down one from Saturday.

Percentage of positive tests • Under the state’s original method, the rate is 6.75%. That’s slightly higher than the seven-day average of 6.7%.

The state’s new method counts all test results, including repeated tests of the same individual. Sunday’s rate was 3.87%, lower than the seven-day average of 3.6%.

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

Totals to date • 398,012 cases; 2,204 deaths; 16,220 hospitalizations; 2,567,778 people tested.