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Boise State Public Radio News is here to keep you current on the news surrounding COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Coronavirus In Idaho: Resources & News From July 5-11


Boise State Public Radio is here to keep you current on the news surrounding COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. This blog contains information from July 5-11 on closures, openings, cancellations & news regarding the coronavirus in Idaho.

Looking for resources? Click here. If you have specific questions or a story about the virus in Idaho, please submit them here.

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IDHW Confirms 556 New COVID-19 Cases Saturday; 14% Increase

July 11 - 5:15 p.m.

State Health officials Saturday posted 556 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Idaho, a 14% increase over Friday's record daily total.

Canyon County nearly doubled its previous daily record with 234 new cases. Ada County had 174 new cases Saturday.

One new fatality was reported by Canyon County, its 11th, and 102nd statewide.

The number of people hospitalized increased by 19 Saturday. Thiry-six people have been hospitalized in the last two days according to state data, for a total of 468 since the outbreak reached Idaho in mid-March.

The state says 735 healthcare workers have contracted the coronavirus, an increase of 69 since Friday.

Idaho's Very Bad Week For COVID-19 Cases

July 10- 5:30 p.m.


State officials reported 479 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, bringing the confirmed statewide total to 9,219. Friday was the fourth straight day that Idaho had more than 400 new cases. 


An additional death was recorded in Ada County, bringing the statewide tally to 101. The majority of Friday’s new cases were once again in Ada County, 182, with Canyon County registering 116.


The end of the workweek continued a nearly monthlong trend of rising daily cases, as Idaho suffered from a resurgence of the virus. Combining all the probable cases with the confirmed cases, the total number of persons believed to have been infected by the coronavirus was nearing 10,000, a grim milestone.


Long-Term Care Centers In Treasure Valley See Rise In Coronavirus Cases

 July 10 - 2:50 p.m. 

In the past week, there were 123 new coronavirus cases among residents and staff in Idaho's long-term care centers. Seventeen facilities now have outbreaks that didn't have them the week before.

That's the largest weekly increase in long-term care cases since Idaho started making this information public at the beginning of June.  

Most new cases are in facilities in Ada and Canyon counties. Caldwell Care of Cascadia saw 36 new cases, and now is the long-term care facility with the highest coronavirus count in the state with 61 cases. 

For Third Day In A Row, Idaho's Coronavirus Cases Exceed 400

July 9 - 5:10 p.m. 


Idaho added 433 new confirmed coronavirus cases on Thursday, for a state total of 8,740.  The state also reached 100 deaths; Ada and Canyon counties each saw one additional death. Twenty-one hospitalizations were recorded today, as well as 27 healthcare workers who tested positive. There were 156 new cases in Ada County, 101 cases in Canyon County, 52 cases in Kootenai County and 31 cases in Twin Falls County.


Idaho Tops 400 Confirmed COVID-19 Cases For Second Straight Day

July 8 - 6:01 p.m.

Idaho reported 423 additional confirmed COVID-19 cases Wednesday, the second day in a row the state topped 400 in the midst of a worsening outbreak. Before Tuesday, the state hadn't seen 400 cases in a day since the outbreak began in March.

Four more deaths were reported, bringing the state's total to 98.

Idaho's total of confirmed probable cases during the pandemic is 8,307.

Coronavirus Cases In Canyon County Climb, But No Further Restrictions Are Planned For Now

July 8 - 7:10 a.m.

The number of coronavirus cases in Canyon County has tripled in the past two weeks — from 435 to 1,397 on Tuesday evening. In the last week, the percent increase of cases on a per-capita basis was 83%, compared to an increase of 47% per-capita in Ada County.

Despite the spike, Southwest District Health, which covers Canyon County, has no plans to move back to Stage 3 restrictions of the state's reopening plan

Read the entire story here.


Idaho's Public School Reopening Plan: What's In It? What Isn't?

July 8 - 6:45 a.m.

When Governor Brad Little unveils the much-anticipated school reopening guideline from his Public School Reopening Committee on July 9, Debbie Critchfield, president of the Idaho State Board of Education, says the plan will have a primary theme: getting more Idaho kids back in school.

"This document is not a list of ways to keep you out of school," Critchfield told Boise State Public Radio News. "It was designed to help districts make decisions to return to school."

Read the full story here.


Mandatory Mask Order Could Be Coming To Ada, Valley Counties

July 7 - 6:00 p.m.

Idaho’s largest hospitals say they’re admitting more and more people with cases of COVID-19 as the community has failed to stem the spread of the disease in recent weeks.

As of Tuesday, 51 people are hospitalized at St. Luke’s Health System after contracting the coronavirus – more than record highs set over the past three months. Fourteen are in the intensive care unit.  St. Alphonsus Health System has also seen a surge, with 27 people admitted, with six in the ICU.

Read the full story here.

Idaho Sets New Single-Day Record, Reporting 448 New Confirmed Cases

July 7 - 5:45 p.m.

State officials reported 448 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed by lab tests Tuesday. This brings the statewide total of confirmed cases to 7,884. There are an additional 655 probable cases statewide.

Coronavirus cases continue to climb in those 29 and younger, with 159 new cases falling in that age group. The average age of Idahoans with COVID-19 is 37.8 years old. There are no new deaths, however Dr. Joshua Kern told Boise State Public Radio this week that fatalities often happen weeks after a positive test.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare reports nine new hospitalizations. 

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Increase In Idaho

July 7 - 7:15 a.m.

Over the last two weeks, 89 people have been hospitalized for the coronavirus. Dr. Joshua Kern, Vice President of Medical Affairs for St. Luke’s said that’s a four to fivefold increase.

“We're actually probably at the tip of the iceberg of how bad it might get in the hospital, because often hospitalizations lag by one to two weeks from the surging number," said Kern.

He said in the last seven days, more than 75% of the patients who tested positive at St. Luke’s have been under the age of 50.

Read the entire story here.


Gov. Brad Little Orders $200 Million Cut Over Idaho's Coronavirus Fallout

July 7 - 7:05 a.m.

While Idaho appears to have closed out its most recent fiscal year in the black, Gov. Brad Little is wasting no time in preemptively cutting $200 million from state budgets in the face of falling revenue.

Little issued an executive order last week directing state agencies to cut 5% from their budgets for fiscal year 2021, which began July 1. Those cuts are on top of a 2% reduction approved by legislators earlier this year

Agencies will have to turn in their revised budgets by July 15.

Read the entire story here.

Over 300 New COVID-19 Cases, 1 Death Added To Idaho Totals Monday

July 6 - 5:33 p.m.


For the fourth-consecutive day state health officials have reported more than 300 daily cases of COVID-19 in Idaho. Of the 319 added today, 143 were reported in Ada County and 51 were reported from Canyon County.


Monday’s death comes from Bingham County, its first. This brings Idaho’s coronavirus-related deaths to 94.


Since Sunday, 18 more cases have been hospitalized— six of which were sent to the ICU. An additional 26 health care workers are reported to have contracted the virus since yesterday.


Earlier today on Twitter, St. Alphonsus announced COVID-19 testing would now be based on medical necessity and severity of symptoms, due to an influx of possible coronavirus cases.

Coronavirus Shutdown Good News For Wild Animals In Idaho

July 6 - 7:15 a.m.

The coronavirus has meant fewer cars on roadways. And a new study says this may be giving some animals a break on Idaho’s roads.

In 2019, 35 deer and elk were hit by cars on a 12-mile stretch of Idaho Highway 21 northeast of Boise. So many animals die there, that Idaho Fish and Game tracks the collisions on its website.

Since the start of the statewide stay-at-home order, traffic on Idaho’s roads has been down 63%. And without all those cars, large animals are getting a break.

Read the entire story here.


One Small Hitch: How COVID-19 Is Shaking Up Idaho Wedding Season

July 6 - 7:00 a.m.

Karen Duran met her fiance at the University of Idaho four years ago. Last March, they got engaged and set the wedding date for August 1, 2020. Leading up to the day, her dress was ready, the cake was ordered and the DJ was booked. Then, the pandemic hit.

Read the full story here.

Idaho Adds 365 Confirmed Cases Sunday, Total Infected Passes 7,000

July 5 - 5:30 p.m.

State health officials said 365 new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed by lab test results Sunday. Since Friday, the state has announced 1,141 new cases; the fastest jump of 1,000 cases or more since the pandemic was first identified in Idaho in mid-March. According to state data, 7,144 Idahoans have contracted the virus. Cases identified in Idaho's most-populated areas have surged in recent weeks, with 207 new cases confirmed in Ada County Sunday. Ada county has more than 1,000 cases more than any other county in the state.

Canyon County added 91 new cases Sunday, a lower number than recent days but adding to one of the fastest-growing outbreaks in the state. The number of cases in Canyon County have more than doubled in the last eight days.

Hospitalizations increased again Sunday, with 10 new patient admissions.

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