The Utah Department of Health reported 2,244 new positive cases of COVID-19 and four more deaths since Sunday. Meanwhile, Gov. Gary Herbert announced new state mandates and recommendations Monday morning, which will go into effect at midnight.
Gov. Gary Herbert announced that although the statewide mask mandate is still in place, restrictions on social gatherings have dialed back to recommendations.
According to an article published by the Salt Lake Tribune, acting director of the UDOH Rich Saunders said to “think through the numbers that would attend social gatherings.”
With the holidays around the corner, Saunders encourages those in high transmission areas to attend gatherings with fewer people than those living in low transmission areas. Currently, Iron County is considered an area with a high level of transmission.
Although Monday’s case count is significantly lower than the record-breaking numbers from last week, the state’s seven-day average is at 3,349 new daily positive test results.
Meanwhile, Utah’s death toll rose to 797 after the loss of a Salt Lake County man older than 85, a Salt Lake County woman, age 45 to 64, and two Washington County men both, both ages 65 to 84.
545 patients are currently admitted in Utah hospitals, totaling 7,602 since the beginning of the pandemic. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, 1,400 of those hospitalizations occurred in the last two weeks.
Gov. Gary Herbert noted that “We’re kind of at the full occupancy rate when it comes to ICU beds.”
Although non-intensive care unit beds are available, patients are “not getting as good of care” due to hospital occupancy.
Iron County reported 33 new cases today and 26 on Sunday. Southern Utah University saw 73 new cases during the week of Nov. 12-18 and recently implemented daily rapid COVID-19 tests available to faculty and students.
Story by Amanda Walton
Photo Courtesy of SUU News