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Health department reports 1,765 new COVID-19 cases, 4 deaths Sunday in Utah

Dakota Sliva administers a COVID-19 test to a patient as University of Utah Health's Wellness Bus visits the Sorenson Multicultural Center in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020.

(Yukai Peng, KSL, File)

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SALT LAKE CITY — In its daily update on the spread of the new coronavirus in Utah, the state health department Sunday is reporting 1,765 new test-confirmed cases of COVID-19 and four deaths from the disease.

The update comes as 8,702 more Utahns were reported to have been tested over Saturday's numbers. Overall, the update brings Utah to 104,882 total confirmed cases and 572 deaths from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In an email, the health department said the reported deaths were of:

  • A Washington County man over age 85 who was hospitalized when he died
  • A Washington County man between ages 65 and 84 who was also hospitalized
  • An Emery County woman between ages 45 and 64 who was hospitalized
  • A man between ages 15 and 24 who was hospitalized

No further information, like a county of residence, was provided about the young man who died; officials wrote that is because of "low counts in this age category," meaning more information would make it easy to identify the man. It is very rare in Utah to lose someone so young to COVID-19, and such deaths often involve additional health complications or preexisting conditions.

The new case figure represents Utah's second-highest number of cases ever reported on a single day, second only to Friday's 1,960 and up slightly from Saturday's count.

Over the past week, Utah is averaging 1,490 reported cases per day and a positive test percentage of 16.6. The health department reports that 308 Utahns are currently hospitalized due to COVID-19, straining the capacity of some intensive care units. Of the 308 hospitalized, the department says that 120 are in intensive care.

The state is reporting that just over 75% of its ICU beds are currently occupied for any reason.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and health leaders will provide an update on the battle against coronavirus in their regular news conference this week. The conference generally occurs on Wednesdays or Thursdays.

Officials will use the opportunity to announce changes in counties' transmission levels based on the index they announced two weeks ago. The transmission index replaced the color-coded guidance system health officials had been using for months, and sorts counties into three tiers with varying restrictions in each.

Because of the state's recent coronavirus spike, however, the vast majority of the state is in the "high" level of transmission with the most restrictions, including a mask requirement in public indoor settings and outdoors when physical distancing is not possible.


Test results now include data from PCR tests and antigen tests. Positive COVID-19 test results are reported to the health department immediately after they are confirmed, but negative test results may not be reported for 24 to 72 hours.

The total number of cases reported by the Utah Department of Health each day includes all cases of COVID-19 since Utah's outbreak began, including those who are currently infected, those who have recovered from the disease, and those who have died.

Recovered cases are defined as anyone who was diagnosed with COVID-19 three or more weeks ago and has not died.

Deaths reported by the state typically occurred two to seven days prior to when they are reported, according to the health department. Some deaths may be from even further back, especially if the person is from Utah but has died in another state.

The health department reports both confirmed and probable COVID-19 case deaths per the case definition outlined by the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists. The death counts are subject to change as case investigations are completed.

Data included in this story primarily reflects the state of Utah as a whole. For more localized data, visit your local health district's website.

More information about Utah's health guidance levels is available at

Information is from the Utah Department of Health and For more information on how the Utah Department of Health compiles and reports COVID-19 data, visit and scroll down to the "Data Notes" section at the bottom of the page.

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Graham Dudley reports on politics, breaking news and more for A native Texan, Graham's work has previously appeared in the Brownwood (Texas) Bulletin and The Oklahoma Daily.


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