Utah’s COVID-19 death toll continues to rise
Utah’s COVID-19 death toll continues to rise

Utah’s COVID-19 death toll continues to rise

Unvaccinated people are 17.4 times more likely to die than vaccinated and boosted Utahns.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Nurse Ashley Hafer fills syringes with the Moderna vaccine for people queuing Thursday, March 18, 2021 at Utah Film Studios.

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The number of new cases of COVID-19 reported in Utah remains a fraction of what it was a few weeks ago, but the number of deaths continues to rise.

On Thursday, the Utah Department of Health reported five more deaths. That brings the total number so far in February to 279 – 6.3% of the total of 4,397 since the first death in Utah was reported 23 months ago on March 22, 2020.

There have been 334 deaths in the past month – 7.6% of the total.

The Utah Department of Health also reported 627 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, the seventh day in a row that the number of reported cases has been below 1,000.

On Thursday, UDOH began reporting the risk factors for unvaccinated Utahns compared to both fully vaccinated and fully vaccinated individuals who also received a booster shot. For the past four weeks, unvaccinated were Utahns 5.7 times as high risk of dying from COVID-19 as vaccinated humans were; 2.4 times as likely to be hospitalized; and twice as likely to be tested positive for coronavirus.

Compared to vaccinated and boosted Utahns, the unvaccinated had a 17.4-fold higher risk of dying from COVID-19; 6.5 times more likely to be hospitalized; and 2.5 times more likely to be tested positive.

According to state data, 60.9% of Utahns were fully vaccinated as of Thursday. However, researchers have found that a booster is essential for preventing serious illness – and only 26.6% of all Utahns have received a booster dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

After falling steadily over the past few weeks, the number of Utahs admitted with COVID-19 increased by 37 in the last 24 hours to 395. There are 102 people with COVID-19 admitted to intensive care units in Utah, an increase of 10 in the last day .

ICUs in the state’s larger “referral” hospitals had a capacity of 79.8%, lower than the 85% threshold that hospital administrators have said is needed to accommodate unpredictable staff levels, new patients and the availability of specialized equipment and staff.

ICUs at the major hospitals had almost continuously exceeded 85% occupancy since the end of August, but the number fell below this threshold last week. Overall, 75.4% of ICU beds across the state are filled, and 19.6% of ICU patients were admitted with COVID-19

Find out where you can be vaccinated coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution. Find out where you can be tested coronavirus.utah.gov/utah-covid-19-testing-locations.

Breakdown of updated figures

Vaccine doses administered within the last 24 hours / total doses administered • 3,155 / 4,935,407.

Number of Utahs fully vaccinated • 1,979,92060.9% of Utah’s total population. That is an increase of 944 in the last 24 hours.

Cases reported during the last 24 hours • 627.

Vaccination status • Health authorities do not have or release immediate vaccination status for people who test positive, who are hospitalized or die. They calculate the overall risk factors for these results depending on the vaccination status listed below.

Tests reported within the last 24 hours • A total of 10,745 people were tested.

Deaths reported within the last 24 hours • Five.

All of the deaths occurred in Salt Lake County – two men aged 65-84 and two men and a woman aged 85.

Admissions reported within the last 24 hours • 395. That’s 37 more than stated Wednesday. Of those currently hospitalized, 92 are in intensive care, three more than reported on Wednesday. And 42% of patients in intensive care units are treated for COVID-19.

Percentage of positive tests • According to the state’s original method, the rate was 14.4% in the last 24 hours. That is lower than the seven-day average of 19.3%.

The state’s new method counts all test results, including repeated tests by the same person. Thursday’s price was 5.8%, lower than the seven-day average of 11.4%.

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

Totals to date • 921,531 cases; 4,397 deaths; 33,073 admissions; 9,200,328 tests administered.

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