Here's What We Know About The 11 Confirmed Cases Of Coronavirus In Idaho

Mar 14, 2020

(Map Credit: Idaho Statesman/McClatchy)

Twin Falls County Reports First Case While Blaine County Adds One More, Bringing Total To 11

March 18 - 6:15 p.m. 

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has confirmed two new cases of coronavirus, bringing the state's total to 11.

Both are in south central Idaho, which is home to nearly half of the state's cases.

One is a man in his 80s from Twin Falls County, the first case in that county. He was briefly hospitalized, but is now recovering at home. The second is a man in his 40s from Blaine County. He displayed mild symptoms, health officials said, and is also recovering at home.

The South Central Public Health District said the four other women in Blaine County who contracted the disease are still recovering well. Officials believe three of them received it from visitors to the area, while the origin of the fourth is under investigation. 

Fourth Confirmed Case In Blaine County, Ninth In Idaho

March 17 - 6:29 p.m.

South Central Public Health District announced a fourth confirmed case of COVID-19 in Blaine County. This is the state's ninth confirmed case.

The patient is a female  over the age of 80. She is recovering in a local hospital under isolation. The point of transmission remains under investigation.

Madison County Confirms First Case Of Coronavirus

March 17 - 5:45 p.m.

Tuesday afternoon Eastern Idaho Public Health confirmed the first positive case of novel coronavirus in Madison County. This is the state’s eighth case. The individual is a male BYU-Idaho student in his 20s with recent out-of-state travel to a COVID-19 affected area.

The individual is recovering with mild symptoms in his Rexburg apartment. The patient became symptomatic on March 8, returned to Madison County on March 11 and stayed in his apartment until seeing his medical provider on March 12.

March 17 - 2:53 p.m.

Eastern Idaho Public Health has confirmed its first case of COVID-19 in Madison County, bringing the statewide total at this time to eight. More details about the case will be announced in a press conference in the County Commissioner's Chamber at the Madison County Courthouse at 5 p.m.

South Central Public Health Reports Blaine County's Second Confirmed Coronavirus Case

Tuesday, March 17 - 9:52 a.m.

South Central Public Health has confirmed a new case of COVID-19 in Blaine County. The patient if a woman over the age of 50 who did not require hospitalization. As soon as she began showing symptoms, the individual self isolated. The point of transmission is still under investigation.

Central District Health Confirms Third Coronavirus Case In Ada County

Tuesday, March 17 - 9:48 a.m.

Central District Health has announced Ada County's third confirmed case of COVID-19. The patient is a woman from Ada County under the age of 50. She reported mild symptoms that did not require hospitalization. She reamins in isolation at home and has indicated possible travel-related transmission.

State Total Rises To Five As South Central Public Health Confirms Their Second Coronavirus Case

Saturday, March 14 - 8:21 p.m.

The second Blaine County resident confirmed by South Central Public Health to have tested positive for COVID-19 is a woman over the age of 70. She is currently being hospitalized for her symptoms and is recovering. At this time, officials are still trying to determine how the patient contracted the virus.

Ada County Reports Its Second Confirmed COVID-19 Case, Bringing Idaho's Total To Four

Saturday, March 14 - 6:16 p.m.

The Central District Health Department confirmed a second case of COVID-19 in Ada County Saturday evening. This brings the total number of confirmed cases in the state to four. Central District Health reports the patient is a male in his 50s and is believed to have contracted the virus through travel. He is recovering in his home and did not require hospitalization.

Third Idaho Coronavirus Case Confirmed In Teton Valley

Saturday, March 14 - 6:11 p.m.

Officials from Eastern Idaho Public Health and Teton Valley Health announced Idaho's third confirmed case of coronavirus in Teton County in a press conference Saturday evening.

The patient is a woman under the age of 60 who was in close contact with a confirmed case in a neighboring state. Officials say she remains at home in good spirits with mild symptoms that did not require hospitalization.

After learning of her contact with a confirmed case, this patient contacted her health care provider to determine the necessity of a test. She presented to Teton Valley Health Thursday evening, when her sample was sent to the Idaho Bureau of Laboratories for testing. The positive result was delivered Saturday at 3:00 p.m.

During the press conference, officials said there is no indication of community spread of the illness as this time and the risk to Idahoans remains low. Public health staff will work to notify those who may have been at risk for exposure.

Blaine County Announces Idaho's Second Confirmed COVID-19 Case

Saturday, March 14 - 1:49 p.m.

A second known Idaho resident has tested positive for coronavirus, said Melody Bowyer, the director of South Central Public Health District (SCPHD) during a press conference on Saturday.

The patient is a Blaine County resident in her 50s. Health officials said she  is resting at home with mild symptoms and did not require hospitalization. Her symptoms were cough, shortness of breath of breath and fever, according to Logan Hudson, a public health division administrator for SCPHD.

The first confirmed case in Idaho was a woman from Ada County who had traveled to a conference in New York. Health officials said she is also recovering at home and did not require hospitalization. 

The Blaine County resident saw a local provider, who sent a sample to the state public health lab on Thursday. The test was run Friday and SCPHD learned of the positive result Friday night.

The investigation into the Blaine County case started Friday evening. 

So far, officials know the individual traveled to a neighboring state within a two-week time window before her symptoms began. At the time that neighboring state did not have a confirmed case of COVID-19, but it does now. Officials would not say which state she traveled to, citing privacy concerns.

“If we ever learn of a location here in Blaine County where people were at risk at some point, we will notify those people immediately,” said Hudson.

The woman followed the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines by staying home and not going into work when she started feeling sick earlier this week. Hudson said because she followed the social distancing protocol, officials believe the risk to the public is the same as it was prior to learning of the positive test last night.

“We do not feel like any businesses and schools in the area have any more risk than they did before last night,” Hudson said. 

Blaine County verbally announced a state of emergency in the county on Friday, the day Gov. Brad Little made the same declaration for the state of Idaho. At Saturday’s press conference, the commissioners said they would formalize this announcement in writing on Tuesday.

Gov. Brad Little Announces Idaho's First Confirmed Case Of Coronavirus

Friday, March 13 - 5:30 p.m.

Gov. Brad Little (R) and state public health officials announced Idaho's first confirmed case of coronavirus Friday afternoon in a press conference, just hours after declaring a state of emergency.

The person is a woman between the age of 50 and 60 and is in isolation at home in Ada County. She recently returned from a conference in New York City where three other attendees tested positive for coronavirus. She is currently doing well and recovering from mild symptoms.

"We are concerned for this person, but we're glad her symptoms have been mild," Elke Shaw-Tulloch, administrator for the Division of Public Health for the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, said in a press release. "I'm impressed at how well the clinic where the sample was collected minimized the risk to staff and other patients."

The patient was asymptomatic when she traveled from New York City back to Idaho via the Boise airport. Officials said she was only back "a few days" before feeling sick and seeking medical attention. Her treating physician ruled out influenza and then worked to gather information on the woman's travel history, symptoms and exposure risk.

The sample was taken late Thursday and sent to the Idaho Bureau of Laboratories, where it was tested Friday morning. Her positive test for COVID-19 did not require hospitalization.

This case was not contracted from community spread. Epidemiologists with Central District Health are working with the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare to determine reasonable risk criteria based on her movements since her return to Idaho. If others are found to be at risk for exposure, health officials said they will monitor them closely.

"We understand that this is scary," said Shaw-Tulloch, "but we encourage everyone to do their part to stay healthy and prevent illness: Wash your hands often, cover your coughs and sneezes, stay home if you're sick, and stay away from sick people."

In a press conference Friday afternoon, Gov. Little said the state has been preparing for its first confirmed case since January, putting precautionary measures and recommendations in place.

"Our focus is on slowing the spread of coronavirus to protect vulnerable individuals and preserve capacity in our healthcare facilities," Little said.

Saturday afternoon, Idaho State University students received an email from university president Kevin Satterlee that stated the woman confirmed as Idaho's first positive COVID-19 case is a student at ISU's Meridian campus.

His announcement said this patient was last on campus Tuesday, March 10, though contact with others in the school community was limited. Anyone deemed to have been at risk for exposure has already been contacted by Central District Health for guidance and monitoring.

Prior to learning this information, Satterlee sent an email Friday announcing the university's decision to extend spring break by one week and move all courses to remote delivery for the remainder of the semester, starting March 30. These measures were put into place to help limit the spread of the COVID-19 situation.

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