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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 Nov. 1 - 7

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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 November 1-7 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.

If you are searching for information on something specific, we recommend using the "find" function (CTRL+F on a PC, COMMAND+F on a Mac). Or search the archived blog posts at the bottom of this page.

Member support is what makes local COVID-19 reporting possible. Support this coverage here.

Idaho Sets New Daily COVID-19 Case Record For Fourth Time In Five Days

November 7 - 7 p.m.

For the fourth time in the last five days, Idaho has set a daily record for total new COVID-19 cases. State health officials announced 1,403 new cases Saturday, 1,050 of which were lab-confirmed - a record high number by itself. Four more people have died, pushing the death toll to 683 people.

Nearly 450 of Saturday's new cases were in Ada County, which was also home to three of the day's reported fatalities. In Idaho's most populous county, 191 people have died of COVID-19 since March.

Hospitalization data was not updated Saturday, the most recent information showing a record high 320 people receiving hospital care for COVID-19 on November 4.

Idaho Sets One-Day Record For Confirmed COVID-19 Cases

November 6 - 5:43 p.m. 

State health officials reported 1,045 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Friday, the highest daily total. Another 285 cases were probable, bringing the total daily case number to 1,330. The statewide total of confirmed cases is now 61,110 with an additional 9,799 probable cases since the start of the pandemic.Idaho reported eight COVID-19 deaths on Friday. The statewide total of fatalities is now 679. 

Ada County reported three deaths, two more were in Kootenai County, and one was in each of Franklin, Nez Perce, and Twin Falls counties.

The state also reported a new high in hospitalizations and ICU cases. The latest data, gathered on November 4th, shows 320 patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 were hospitalized and 90 were in the ICU. 

South Central Public Health District, Central District Health, Southwest District Health, and the Panhandle Health District released a joint news release Friday saying the surge in cases over the last month have created backlogs and delays for disease investigation teams. These delays, they report, make it impossible to contact all new reported cases or close-contacts. This means there may be an undercount in cases due to overwhelmed public health resources.

Idaho Adds Nearly 900 Confirmed COVID-19 Cases, Seven More Deaths

November 5 - 5:20 p.m. 

 

Idaho added 885 confirmed COVID-19 cases on Thursday, and 380 more probable cases, for a daily total of 1,265 cases. The state has been increasing its usage of antigen tests — as opposed to PCR nasal swabs — which count as probable cases. 

 

The percent of tests coming back positive increased for the seventh week in a row and is now at 14.7%.

 

Idaho reached a new high of 296 COVID-19 patients hospitalized on Monday. That data was added on Wednesday. 

 

There were also seven more COVID-19-related deaths on Thursday. Three deaths were in Lemhi County, two in Canyon and one each in Madison and Twin Falls counties.

Survey: Majority Of Idahoans Think Coronavirus Is At Least Partially Under Control

November 5 - 8:15 a.m.

The coronavirus pandemic has seeped into just about every facet of life, including Tuesday’s election, which a majority of Idaho voters think the country is handling it just fine. Read the entire story here.

Idaho Records Deadliest Day Of COVID-19 Pandemic

Nov. 4 - 5:29 p.m.

Idaho reported its largest one-day COVID-19 death toll of the pandemic, with 17, and the most lab-confirmed cases in a day, with 957. The pandemic has been surging in the state and much of the country and health officials worry it will worsen with people staying indoors as the weather gets colder.

There were another 333 new probable cases Wednesday, bringing the combined total to 1,290, also a record.

Wednesday's deaths bring the state's total to 664 since the first Idaho case was reported in mid-March.

Idaho Gov. Brad Little recently took Idaho back to a modified Stage 3 of pandemic restrictions, but it changed little and included no enforcement. A group of health officials has called for a statewide mask mandate to avoid hospitals being overwhelmed, but so far Little has resisted such calls.

 

Doctors Who Wrote Idaho's Plan To Ration Care Ask Gov. Little For Mask Mandate To Avoid 'Disaster'

November 4 - 3:45 p.m.

Medical providers who sit on the committee that wrote Idaho’s framework to ration medical care if it becomes necessary are asking Gov. Brad Little for a statewide mask mandate.

Eleven providers, who work at facilities including Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center, the Boise VA Medical Center, Kootenai Health, St. Luke’s Health System and Saint Alphonsus Health System, signed a letter on Tuesday to Gov. Little. The letter was first reported by the Post Register.

Read the full story here.

Two Idahoans Died Of The Flu — 2014 And COVID-19

November 4 — 2:15 p.m.

A Blaine County man older than 60 and a Twin Falls County woman older than 80 were the first Idahoans to die of influenza-related causes, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare announced on Wednesday. In addition to the flu, they both also had COVID-19. 

“The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is reminding Idahoans that both infections can be serious and there is concern that co-circulation and co-infection with influenza and COVID-19 viruses could be especially harmful, particularly among adults already at increased risk of influenza-related complications,” said Dr. Leslie Tengelsen, the Idaho influenza surveillance coordinator. “I encourage everyone to get their annual flu vaccine as soon as possible to reduce the chance of getting the flu. This is extremely important this season.”

On average, 41 influenza-related deaths occur in Idaho each year, IDHW said. As of Tuesday evening, Idaho had 647 COVID-related deaths since March.

November 3 - 5:45 p.m.

State Health and Welfare officials posted 1,179 new coronavirus infections Tuesday, 826 new confirmed cases, and a record 353 new probable cases. Fifteen more people have died, pushing the death toll since March to 647 people.

Ada County posted 245 of the day's confirmed cases and 85 probable cases, though the state dashboard shows a declining case rate in the county for the third straight day.

Tuesday's fatalities were most heavily concentrated in Ada and Canyon Counties, with three each. Other new deaths were posted by Bingham, Bonner, Fremont, Kootenai (2), Lincoln, Madison and Payette Counties.

Since March, Idaho health officials say 58, 223 people have been confirmed to have contracted the virus and another 8,801 people have been listed with probable cases. This is the fourth time in 12 days that Idaho has recorded more than 800 new daily confirmed cases and more than 1,000 total new cases.

Twin Falls City Council Takes Step Toward Mask Mandate

November 2 - 6:30 p.m.

Twin Falls could have a mask mandate as early as next week. On Monday night, the Twin Falls City Council voted 5-2 to direct city staff to draft an ordinance requiring face masks in public. It will receive an official vote during next Monday's council meeting.

Read the full story here.

Idaho Reports More Than 600 Confirmed Coronavirus Cases Monday

November 2 - 5:20 p.m.

State officials reported 641 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 Monday, bringing the statewide total to 57,397. An additional 116 cases were listed as probable.

Following its deadliest week since the start of the pandemic, Idaho reported two additional COVID-19 deaths Monday — one each in Lincoln and Twin Falls Counties. With these fatalities, a total of 632 Idahoans have died from the coronavirus.

On its weekly hotspots and local trends page, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s website shows Canyon, Kootenai, Twin Falls and Bonneville counties as the areas of the state with the most confirmed cases so far this week. Noticeably at the bottom of this list is Idaho’s most-populated county, Ada, which added only 34 confirmed cases Monday.

As state and surrounding hospitals near capacity, hospitalizations and ICU admissions have been on the rise in Idaho. However, the most recent data from the state on October 31 shows a sharp decline in both numbers. More current information is not available at this time.

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