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Idaho’s COVID-19 metrics keep worsening, and there appears to be no quick end in sight

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Posted at 8:04 PM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 22:04:59-05

This article was originally published by Rachel Roberts in the Idaho Statesman.

Idaho’s COVID-19 metrics are setting records regularly, and when that will stop is anyone’s guess.

The state’s seven public health districts added an unprecedented 1,250 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, plus 368 new probable cases, for a record of 1,618 total cases. The previous highs were 1,207 confirmed cases on Monday, and 1,417 total cases on Nov. 6.

The explosion in cases is taxing Idaho hospitals like never before, with a record 361 hospitalizations statewide as of Monday, including 94 patients in intensive care.

Idaho’s seven-day moving average has been above 1,000 cases per day for six straight days. It reached an all-time high of 1,249 on Wednesday. The state’s seven-day average has increased 51.6% since Nov. 1, when it stood at 824.1 cases per day. Since Oct. 1 (481.3), the average has ballooned by 159.5%.

Six counties combined for a record-tying 18 new coronavirus-related deaths on Wednesday. The state has now lost 738 residents to the virus since the start of the pandemic, with a case fatality rate of about 0.95%. Eastern Idaho Public Health said a Bonneville County death was a male in his 80s, and a Lemhi County death was a female in her 70s. No further information was available on the remaining deaths.

Idaho has seen 66,365 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, plus 10,921 total probable cases. Health and Welfare estimates that 33,715 of those cases have recovered.

In observance of Veterans Day, Idaho North Central District and Southwest District Health did not update their websites with new COVID-19 case counts. The Idaho Statesman used the case counts from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare for the counties in each of those health districts.

Ada County was hit with a record 391 new confirmed cases and 95 new probable cases, increasing its state-leading total to 17,737 overall. Twin Falls (123 new, 4,641 total), Kootenai (118 new, 5,062 total) and Bonneville (105 new, 4,420 total) also saw their case counts increase by triple digits.

The other counties adding new confirmed cases Wednesday were Adams (1 new, 71 total), Bannock (36 new, 2,160 total), Bear Lake (3 new, 107 total), Benewah (9 new, 209 total), Bingham (21 new, 1,450 total), Blaine (26 new, 973 total), Boise (2 new, 87 total), Bonner (12 new, 578 total), Boundary (6 new, 121 total), Canyon (78 new, 10,739 total), Caribou (2 new, 252 total), Cassia (42 new, 1,593 total), Clearwater (2 new, 187 total), Custer (9 new, 101 total), Elmore (18 new, 504 total), Franklin (4 new, 370 total), Fremont (10 new, 528 total), Gem (7 new, 451 total), Gooding (15 new, 587 total), Jefferson (20 new, 948 total), Jerome (36 new, 1,289 total), Latah (3 new, 1,151 total), Lemhi (6 new, 331 total), Lewis (3 new, 114 total), Lincoln (5 new, 246 total), Madison (33 new, 2,803 total), Minidoka (42 new, 1,322 total), Nez Perce (11 new, 1,324 total), Oneida (1 new, 80 total), Owyhee (4 new, 412 total), Payette (16 new, 1,107 total), Power (1 new, 336 total), Shoshone (11 new, 351 total), Teton (7 new, 349 total) and Washington (12 new, 487 total).

Southeastern Idaho Public Health removed one case from Butte County (97 total). Cases are sometimes removed when an investigation determines an individual’s residence is in another county, health district or state.

DAILY DETAILS

Overall hospitalizations: Health and Welfare reports that there have been 3,002 hospitalizations of people with COVID-19, 598 admissions to the ICU and 4,366 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. 10, the health system was reporting 113 patients in its hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 out of 551 patients overall. The health system reported a 14-day coronavirus test positivity rate of 20%.

Saint Alphonsus Health System: As of Nov. 10, the health system was reporting 62 patients in its hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 out of 328 patients overall. The health system reported a 14-day coronavirus test positivity rate of 21.5%.

Boise School District: The district says the following schools or units have reported confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff since Nov. 3: Amity Elementary (2), Boise High (11), Borah High, (7) Capital High (5), Cynthia Mann Elementary (1), District Services Center (3), East Junior High (1), Fairmont Junior High (1), Frank Church High (3), Grace Jordan Elementary (1), Hawthorne Elementary (3), Hillside Junior High (3), Horizon Elementary (1), Jefferson Elementary (2), Liberty Elementary (2), Longfellow Elementary (1), Lowell Elementary (2), Madison Early Childhood Education Center (1), Maple Grove Elementary (2), Monroe Elementary (1), Morley Nelson Elementary (1), North Junior High (7), Owyhee Elementary (1), Riverglen Junior High (6), Riverside Elementary (4), Shadow Hills Elementary (1), South Junior High (3), Taft Elementary (1), Timberline High (6), Trail Wind Elementary (1), Valley View Elementary (1), West Junior High (1), White Pine Elementary (2), Whitney Elementary (1), Whittier Elementary (9).

West Ada School District: The district says the following schools or units have reported confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff for the weeks of Oct. 25-Nov. 7: Centennial High (4), Eagle High (11), Meridian Academy (1), Meridian High (13), Mountain View High (17), Rocky Mountain High (5), Eagle Middle (2), Lewis and Clark Middle (6), Lowell Scott Middle (3), Meridian Middle (1), Pathways Middle (1), Sawtooth Middle (1), Star Middle (2), Barbara Morgan STEM (1), Cecil D. Andrus Elementary (2), Chief Joseph School of the Arts (2), Christine Donnell (1), Desert Sage Elementary (1), Discovery Elementary (1), Eagle Hills Elementary (1), Eliza Hart Spalding Stem Academy (1), Galileo STEM Academy (1), Hillsdale Elementary (5), Mary McPhearson (1), McMillan Elementary (2), Meridian Elementary (1), Pepper Ridge (1), Peregrine Elementary (1), Pioneer School of the Arts (1), Pleasant View Elementary (1), Ponderosa Elementary (1), Prospect Elementary (1), River Valley Elementary (1).

Testing totals: At the end of the day Wednesday, Health and Welfare reported that 417,446 people had been tested statewide. About 15.9% 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 17,737, Adams 71, Bannock 2,160, Bear Lake 107, Benewah 209, Bingham 1,450, Blaine 973, Boise 87, Bonner 578, Bonneville 4,420, Boundary 121, Butte 97, Camas 39, Canyon 10,739, Caribou 252, Cassia 1,593, Clark 37, Clearwater 187, Custer 101, Elmore 504, Franklin 370, Fremont 528, Gem 451, Gooding 587, Idaho 462, Jefferson 948, Jerome 1,289, Kootenai 5,062, Latah 1,151, Lemhi 331, Lewis 114, Lincoln 246, Madison 2,803, Minidoka 1,322, Nez Perce 1,324, Oneida 80, Owyhee 412, Payette 1,107, Power 336, Shoshone 351, Teton 349, Twin Falls 4,641, Valley 152, Washington 487.