This article was originally published by Rachel Roberts in the Idaho Statesman.
Idaho’s COVID-19 death toll surpassed 900 residents on Wednesday after 20 new deaths were added statewide.
Multiple coronavirus-related deaths were reported in Ada (6 new, 236 total), Canyon (2 new, 142 total), Kootenai (3 new, 76 total) and Twin Falls (4 new, 89 total) counties, while Bannock (29 total), Bonneville (59 total), Franklin (5 total), Jefferson (11 total) and Latah (2 total) announced one death each.
Idaho has now lost 901 residents to the virus with a case fatality rate of about 0.93%. COVID-19 is the sixth-leading cause of death in Idaho in 2020, close to overtaking cerebrovascular disease (strokes and brain aneurysms) for fifth, according to the latest data from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. Diseases of the heart rank No. 1 in Idaho.
Eastern Idaho Public Health said the latest Bonneville County death was a male in his 80s, and the Jefferson County death was female in her 70s. The Franklin and Bannock deaths were women in their 80s and 90s, respectively, according to Southeastern Idaho Public Health. No information was available on the other deaths.
The state’s seven public health districts reported 1,174 new confirmed and 419 new probable cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday for 1,593 total. On the heels of a record 1,937 cases on Tuesday, the state’s seven-day moving average has reached an all-time high of 1,445.1 cases per day.
As of Monday, data from IDHW show 453 people hospitalized statewide with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19. Patients in intensive care hit an all-time high at 108. There also have been seven cases reported statewide of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C), a serious condition associated with COVID-19 where different body parts can become inflamed.
Since the pandemic reached Idaho, there have been 82,412 confirmed cases. The state also has reported 14,440 probable cases and estimated that 39,199 people have recovered from the virus.
Ada County reported 276 new confirmed cases on Wednesday, while Canyon County saw a jump of 228 confirmed cases, which increased its seven-day average to its highest point yet at 202 cases per day. Kootenai (125 new, 6,511 total), Bonneville (88 new, 5,594 total), Twin Falls (62 new, 5,525 total), Madison (51 new, 3,587 total), Bannock (46 new, 2,637 total) and Bingham (38 new, 1,774 total) also experienced significant increases.
The other counties adding new confirmed cases were Adams (1 new, 80 total), Bear Lake (3 new, 147 total), Benewah (2 new, 260 total), Blaine (19 new, 1,173 total), Boise (1 new, 100 total), Bonner (23 new, 822 total), Caribou (1 new, 262 total), Cassia (8 new, 1,933 total), Clearwater (2 new, 466 total), Custer (4 new, 128 total), Elmore (12 new, 631 total), Franklin (2 new, 504 total), Fremont (10 new, 641 total), Gem (26 new, 702 total), Gooding (11 new, 683 total), Idaho (2 new, 671 total), Jefferson (13 new, 1,161 total), Jerome (12 new, 1,542 total), Latah (15 new, 1,586 total), Lincoln (4 new, 282 total), Minidoka (7 new, 1,557 total), Nez Perce (19 new, 2,035 total), Oneida (4 new, 105 total), Owyhee (17 new, 581 total), Payette (17 new, 1,327 total), Power (4 new, 367 total), Shoshone (6 new, 466 total), Teton (1 new, 405 total), Valley (5 new, 191 total) and Washington (10 new, 617 total).
IDHW removed one case from Lehmi County (370 total). Cases are sometimes removed when an investigation determines an individual’s residence is in another county, health district or state.
SWDH SHOWS FIVE COUNTIES IN ‘HIGH’ ALERT
Southwest District Health’s latest weekly health alert update for the six counties under its jurisdiction show five counties at the highest COVID-19 risk level.
Canyon, Gem, Owyhee, Payette and Washington counties each have increasing daily incidence rates and high test positivity rates, SWDH said.
Canyon County had the lowest positivity rate among the five counties at 19.48%, while Owyhee County had the highest at 28.94%. Social and community gatherings are said to be a continued source of transmission.
Adams County was moved to the yellow health alert level with an incidence rate of 1.35 daily new cases per 10,000 people, which is decreasing.
SWDH also included an update on COVID-19 in schools by county. Those in quarantine have been identified as a close contact of a positive case, and those in isolation are currently positive for COVID-19:
Adams: 0 quarantine, 0 isolation
Canyon: 298 quarantine, 72 isolation
Gem: 16 quarantine, 14 isolation
Owyhee: 160 quarantine, 3 isolation
Payette: 76 quarantine, 2 isolation
Washington: 13 quarantine, 7 isolation
Overall hospitalizations: Health and Welfare reports that there have been 3,817 hospitalizations of people with COVID-19, 715 admissions to the ICU and 4,936 health care workers infected. Hospital and health care numbers are based on cases with completed investigations into contacts, not the full number of positives.
St. Luke’s Health System: As of Nov. 24, the health system was reporting 137 patients in its hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 out of 524 patients overall. The health system reported a 14-day coronavirus test positivity rate of 22%.
Saint Alphonsus Health System: As of Nov. 22, the health system was reporting 75 patients in its hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 out of 283 patients overall. The health system reported a 14-day coronavirus test positivity rate of 26.1%.
Boise School District: The district says the following schools or units have reported confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff since Nov. 17: Amity Elementary (1), Boise High (4), Borah High (5), Capital High (2), Collister Elementary (1), District Services (3), Fairmont Junior High (1), Frank Church High (1), Grace Jordan Elementary (2), Hidden Springs Elementary (1), Highlands Elementary (1), Hillcrest Elementary (3), Hillside Junior High (2), Les Bois Junior High (4), Liberty Elementary (2), Madison Early Childhood Education Center (1), Maple Grove Elementary (1), Morley Nelson Elementary (1), North Junior High (1), Roosevelt Elementary (1), South Junior High (3), Taft Elementary (2), Timberline High (5), Trail Wind Elementary (1), Valley View Elementary (1), Washington Elementary (1), Whittier Elementary (2).
West Ada School District: The district says the following schools or units have reported confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff for Nov. 11-24: Centennial High (5), Eagle High (23), Idaho Fine Arts (1), Meridian Academy (1), Meridian High (14), Mountain View High (25), Renaissance High (5), Rocky Mountain High (19), Virtual High School (1), Crossroads Middle (2), Eagle Middle (2), Heritage Middle (5), Lewis and Clark Middle (4), Lowell Scott Middle (10), Meridian Middle (5), Pathways Middle (1), Sawtooth Middle (6), Star Middle (8), Victory Middle (5), Virtual Middle (1), Barbara Morgan STEM (1), Cecil D. Andrus Elementary (3), Chaparral Elementary (1), Chief Joseph School of the Arts (1), Christine Donnell (2), Desert Sage Elementary (2), Discovery Elementary (2), Eagle Elementary School of the Arts (3), Eliza Hart Spalding STEM (3), Frontier Elementary (2), Hillsdale Elementary (3), Hunter Elementary (3), Lake Hazel Elementary (5), Mary McPherson (5), McMillan Elementary (1), Meridian Elementary (6), Pepper Ridge (3), Peregrine Elementary (2), Pleasant View Elementary (1), Ponderosa Elementary (2), Prospect Elementary (2), River Valley Elementary (4), Seven Oaks Elementary (3), Siena Elementary (1), Silver Sage Elementary (1), Star Elementary (1), Summerwind STEM Academy (1), Ustick Elementary (5).
Testing totals: At the end of the day Wednesday, Health and Welfare reported that 464,446 people had been tested statewide. About 17.7% of those have been positive for COVID-19.
Counties with community spread: All counties except Adams have been announced to have community spread.
Counties with confirmed COVID-19 cases: Ada 21,201, Adams 80, Bannock 2,637, Bear Lake 147, Benewah 260, Bingham 1,774, Blaine 1,173, Boise 100, Bonner 822, Bonneville 5,594, Boundary 153, Butte 104, Camas 40, Canyon 13,279, Caribou 262, Cassia 1,933, Clark 40, Clearwater 466, Custer 128, Elmore 631, Franklin 504, Fremont 641, Gem 702, Gooding 683, Idaho 671, Jefferson 1,161, Jerome 1,542, Kootenai 6,511, Latah 1,586, Lemhi 370, Lewis 172, Lincoln 282, Madison 3,587, Minidoka 1,557, Nez Perce 2,035, Oneida 105, Owyhee 581, Payette 1,327, Power 367, Shoshone 466, Teton 405, Twin Falls 5,525, Valley 191, Washington 617.