Wednesday, April 24, 2024

All 44 Idaho counties had a COVID-19 case last week

by Colin Tiernan
| August 20, 2020 9:24 AM

TWIN FALLS — The number of weekly COVID-19 cases has held flat in Idaho for the last month.

The state had 3,101 new COVID-19 cases, roughly the same amount the Gem State has had each week since mid-July.

For comparison, Idaho had 4,104 cases during its worst week in mid-July, and some 280 cases during the first week of June.

This was the first week all 44 Idaho counties had at least one positive case. Camas County had its second case and its first since March 31. Many rural counties with small populations have had low case counts.

The Magic Valley had 257 new positive cases, a 24% decrease from the week before. The eight-county, south-central Idaho region has consistently added between 230 and 380 new cases weekly since the start of July. Minidoka, Cassia, Jerome, Gooding and Twin Falls counties continue to be consistent sources of new infections.

Blaine County has had a very small number of new cases since April. The 14 new cases there last week were a four-month high.

There were 45 new COVID-19 deaths throughout the state. There has been an average of 39 deaths each week for the last month. COVID-19 killed one person in Twin Falls last week. The coronavirus has now killed 49 people in the Magic Valley and 291 in Idaho.

From a coronavirus standpoint, the situation for hospitals has improved significantly compared to last month. For instance, there was a stretch from mid-July through early August when the St. Luke’s hospital system in Idaho saw about 70 new COVID-19 hospitalizations per day. Those numbers alarmed state hospital leaders, who urged state and local officials to issue mask mandates in order to slow the spread of the virus.

St. Luke’s hospitalizations have dropped into the 50-per-day range during the past week. That’s still not ideal for hospitals — St. Luke’s was seeing just two or three COVID-19 hospitalizations a day in early June for instance — but it has prompted some doctors to note the situation is improving.

Hospitalizations have also gone down for St. Luke’s Magic Valley Medical Center. For the past two weeks the Twin Falls hospital has seen about six new COVID-19 hospitalizations a day. Between 15 and 20 new patients per day had to be admitted daily in mid-July.