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SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Health on Thursday reported an additional 590 cases of COVID-19 and one new death from the disease in the state.
That brings Utah’s total to 19,374 cases since the pandemic began, up from 18,784 the day before. A total of 164 Utahns have now died due to COVID-19, and 10,642 Utahns are estimated to have recovered from it.
In an email, the health department said the deceased Utahn was a Salt Lake County man between ages 45 and 64 who was not hospitalized at the time of his death.
The health department is reporting 7,316 new tests conducted — though that number is "likely artificially high," it says, due to several days' worth of negative tests being reported today — for a total positive test percentage of 6.2.
It says 170 Utahns are currently hospitalized due to COVID-19, and 34 new hospitalizations were reported over yesterday. Seventy-nine Utahns are currently in the ICU because of the virus, the health department says, and 66.2% of the state's ICU beds are occupied.
The total number of cases reported by the health department includes all cases of COVID-19 since Utah’s outbreak began, including those who are infected now, those who have recovered from the disease, and those who have died.
Earlier in the day, Gov. Gary Herbert and local leaders held a press conference entirely in Spanish to address the unique challenges of the state's Hispanic and Latino community in combating the virus.
Despite making up just over 14% of the Utah population, Hispanics and Latinos have comprised more than 43% of the state's COVID-19 cases.
On Wednesday, Herbert encouraged Utahns to wear masks and said he is considering granting a Salt Lake County request to make mask use mandatory in public. In response to a recent uptick in coronavirus cases in the state, Herbert said Wednesday he will not relax the risk levels of any location for at least two weeks.
Some rural Utah counties are at the green "new normal" risk level, while most of the state is at yellow risk and Salt Lake City is at orange risk. Salt Lake County accounts for 9,763 of the state's coronavirus cases and 105 of its deaths.
Utah County and the Bear River and Southwest Utah health districts have also seen more than 1,000 total cases since the pandemic began.