St. Luke's Health System

Idaho’s Coronavirus Financial Advisory Committee approved funds Wednesday morning to pay for extra contract nurses and respiratory therapists.

When Willow Belden goes holiday shopping she likes to support local businesses. This year, though, it's meant calling stores and asking, "Are you guys wearing masks? But are you really wearing masks? And, like, what else are you doing?"

Ballet Idaho

Snow falling today in the Treasure Valley accenutated the holiday mood shared by Idaho Matters guest Anne Mueller, Artistic Associate at Ballet Idaho. She introduced the upcoming dance production, "Spectacular Holiday Spectaular."

The inspiration for its music came from Mueller's time listening to Carl Scheider, the radio host of Private Idaho and Idaho Music on Boise State Public Radio. Every December, our DJ has broadcast Idaho holiday music from the Idaho Ho Ho! series of albums by the Audiolab Recording Studio.

Caldwell VA Clinic

Immunology and epidemiology were not top-of-mind topics in years past, but this year, it’s all we seem to talk about. Idaho Matters went behind-the-scenes to check-in with a researcher at the Boise VA Medical Center. Dr. Mary Cloud Ammons of the Idaho Veterans Research and Education Foundation joined the show to talk about her work.

Five parents who sued the West Ada School District’s teachers’ union over last month’s sickout protest have agreed to dismiss the issue in court.

Intermountain Healthcare

The Mountain West is facing a hospitalization crisis, and even states that cracked down early are feeling the effects of those that didn't.

In Washington State, the frustration is palpable.

Amy Sancetta / AP Photo

Health professionals have begged people to stay home this Thanksgiving and celebrate only within your household. Recent surveys have shown around 30% of people plan to celebrate just within their family household, twice the number of an average year. Smaller gatherings can mean people are looking for smaller turkeys.

Marco Verch / Flickr Creative Commons

The holiday season usually brings an uptick in illness — but health officials say this is no normal year. The coronavirus pandemic is in its most dangerous phase yet, and if Thanksgiving gatherings and travel increase cases, hospitals say they could reach maximum capacity by the new year.

LM Otero / AP Images

Since millions nationwide lost jobs in the first days of the pandemic, Idaho has had one of the best unemployment recoveries of any state. Thousands of people do remain unemployed in Idaho, but as Boise State Public Radio’s Troy Oppie recently discovered, many of them have not been counted in the state’s weekly unemployment report.

Idaho Nursing Homes Face Staffing Crisis

Nov 23, 2020
AP Images

Idaho’s strained Veterans Affairs long term care system recently secured $2 million in federal funds to help with its staffing shortages. But other assisted living facilities have not received aid they say is desperately needed.


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 15 - 21 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.

Intermountain Healthcare

Hospitals continue to fill up across the Mountain West, and that means some patients may have nowhere to go.

John Kelly / Boise State University

This interview originally aired Oct. 15, 2020.

When the pandemic hit in March, businesses suffered. And all those people who were going to start new jobs or internships were suddenly left hanging. But Boise State’s College of Business and Economics saw an opportunity. They’re matching students with local nonprofits and small businesses for internships supported by some generous grant funding. 

Now, students left without work are getting real world experience, and local organizations typically unable to pay interns are getting that much needed support. 

Breanne Lobenberg is a student interning at the Red Cross of Idaho and Montana and joins Idaho Matters live with Laura Chiuppi, the Director of Career Services for the College of Business and Economics at Boise State. 

Lake Pend Oreille, North Idaho
Stan Petersen via Flickr

Facing a significant rise in cases of COVID-19, Panhandle Health District passed a mask mandate Thursday covering all of the region’s five counties in a 4-2 vote. It takes effect immediately.

via Facebook / Saint Alphonsus Hospital

The Saint Alphonsus Festival of Trees has kicked off the holiday season in the Treasure Valley. However, just like so many things this year’s event is going to be experienced virtually

Lauren McLean / via Facebook

Police will be able to issue citations and fines to enforce Boise’s COVID-19 rules, including its mask mandate, beginning Monday. This is according to a new public health order Boise Mayor Lauren McClean announced Thursday.

neetalparekh / Flickr Creative Commons

Idaho has maintained one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country throughout the pandemic, but the state's weekly jobless reports have only partially included a key indicator of recovery.

weyo / Adobe Stock

The vaccine developed by the pharmaceutical company Moderna may be easier to distribute in the rural West, according to regional public health experts.

It can survive up to a month in a freezer, is shipped in small doses, and it doesn't need a special, ultra-cold freezer to survive – unlike the vaccine developed by the company Pfizer.

St. Luke's Health System

As Idaho’s hospitals treat record numbers of COVID-19 patients, their models suggest the next few months could look even more daunting.


Darin Oswald / Idaho Statesman


The pandemic, which could conceivably have brought our country together, has instead contributed to our growing political divides. According to a paper by the Brookings Institute, partisan affiliation is often the strongest single predictor of behavior and attitudes about COVID-19. Political affiliation is even more powerful than local infection rates or demographic characteristics when it comes to how folks will respond to the recommendations from health experts.