ALL NEWS

Hospitals a concern as Utah sets new record for COVID-19 cases

Oct 8, 2020, 1:40 PM | Updated: 6:16 pm
hospitalizations covid-19 cases record utah...
Source: Utah Department of Health via coronavirus.utah.gov

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah health officials say the state set another one-day record for the increase in COVID-19 cases from the day before on Thursday. 

The Utah Department of Health reported 1,501 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, a new record, for a total of 81,947 since the outbreak began. 

But the concern goes beyond the basic numbers, according to Dr. Emily Spivak, an infectious disease physician with the University of Utah. She said ICU capacity was filling up quickly at her hospital. 

“This morning our medical intensive care unit was 95% full,” Spivak said. “We do have the capacity, and people are working to essentially build out other intensive care unit capacity, transition other units, but for us and what this reflects to me, is — we are maximizing the system.” 

There are currently 237 people hospitalized in Utah for COVID-19. 86 of those patients require intensive care unit treatment. Statewide, health officials say 73% of all ICU beds are taken. 

Spivak began to cry after she was asked what it’s like for healthcare workers dealing with rising COVID-19 cases.  She said their hospital administration is very mindful of the physical and mental stress doctors and nurses are going through, but, she constantly hears heartbreaking stories from caregivers.

“They feel very overwhelmed,” Spivak said.  “We feel supported and we have great leadership, but people are really tired.  I don’t know what else to tell you.”

The problem, according to Spivak, is people not wearing masks.  She says it’s a very simple choice to wear one, or not.

“If we choose the latter, we can all plan on remaining in this current state of uncertainty, experiencing lockdowns, virtual schools, cancelled sporting events and holidays without loved ones,” she said.

hospitalizations Utah COVID-19 cases record

Total ICU count in Utah for COVID-19. Source: Utah Department of Health via coronavirus.utah.gov

Utah COVID-19 cases record hospitalizations

Total Utah hospitalizations for COVID-19. Source: Utah Department of Health via coronavirus.utah.gov

While Utah COVID-19 cases result in hospitalization just over 5% of the time, meaning nearly 95% do not require hospitalization, about 1% wind up needing ICU care, according to figures from state health officials. Another 1% require ventilator treatment, the data shows. 

“It is a concern statewide, especially when our main referral health care centers are maxing out of their ICUs, that means there’s going to be limited capacity,” Dr. Angela Dunn, Utah’s state epidemiologist said. “As flu season ramps up and other respiratory diseases come in the fall, you know, are we going to eventually need to move towards crisis standards of care?” 

Dunn urges everyone who can get a flu vaccine to get one as soon as possible.

“You can get the flu vaccine right now and we really need everybody out there who is able to get the flu vaccine to get it to limit the strain on our health care systems.”

Utah reported five additional deaths Thursday, in patients ranging in age from 45 to over 85. Three of those were residents of long-term care facilities. The other two were neither long-term care patients nor were they patients in a hospital. 

State officials estimate 60,220 of the COVID-19 cases in Utah to date to be “recovered.” That means diagnosis was more than three weeks ago, and the patient did not die.


How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronavirus spreads person to person, similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
  • Get a flu shot.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A 

Utah’s Coronavirus Information 

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories

All News

In the golden age of space exploration we live in, cosmic revelations seem to occur more frequently...
Ashley Strickland, CNN

Cosmic seaplanes and self-growing bricks could help us explore other worlds

In the golden age of space exploration we live in, cosmic revelations seem to occur more frequently than ever before.
1 day ago
The Chinese national flag is seen at the entrance to the Zhongnanhai leadership compound in Beijing...
By Zachary Cohen, CNN

A look at China’s history of spying in the US

The suspected Chinese surveillance balloon that violated American airspace this week has fueled a diplomatic crisis with the postponement of Secretary of State Antony Blinken's planned trip to Beijing.
1 day ago
Around 3:15 p.m. Saturday, February 4, a 34-year-old female sustained critical injuries after being...
Waverly Golden

AirMed responds to tubing accident in Peter Sinks, Logan

Around 3:15 p.m. Saturday, February 4, a 34-year-old female sustained critical injuries after being struck by a snowmobile.
1 day ago
A balloon flies in the sky over Billings, Montana, U.S. February 1, 2023, in this picture obtained ...
Zachary Cohen, CNN

US military has shot down the Chinese spy balloon off US East Coast, US official says

The US military has shot down the suspected Chinese surveillance balloon over the Atlantic Ocean off the Eastern Seaboard, a US official said Saturday.
1 day ago
The Goonies House...
Taylor Romine and Ralph Ellis, CNN

Man wanted for leaving a dead fish at ‘The Goonies’ house saved by Coast Guard in daring rescue

A man wanted by police in an incident at a house featured in "The Goonies" was the subject of a Coast Guard rescue when he was tossed from a stolen boat as it capsized, authorities said.
1 day ago
SLCPD said the driver is fully cooperating with the investigation and the children received non-lif...
Chandler Holt

SLCPD makes arrest connected to fatal stabbing case

SLCPD announced the arrest of 26-year-old Ivy Chase Grant today. Grant was booked into Salt Lake County Metro Jail on a charge of obstruction of justice. 
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...
Macey's

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...
Macey's

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
Hospitals a concern as Utah sets new record for COVID-19 cases