Southern Utah sets new 1-day high for new COVID-19 infections

Photo illustration. | Photo by lusia599, iStock/Getty Images Plus, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — What was expected to be a lull in new coronavirus infections in Southern Utah before the arrival of cases from the Thanksgiving holiday has been anything but that, as the area set a new single-day high for new COVID-19 infections on Wednesday, according to the Utah Department of Health.

Graphic showing 10 days with the most coronavirus cases in Southern Utah through Dec. 2, 2020. | Background photo by by
mbz-photodesign, iStock/Getty Images Plus; Infographic by Chris Reed, St. George News | Click to enlarge

There were 363 new infections on Wednesday. That came a day after the month started with the sixth most new cases in a day since the start of the pandemic in March.

David Heaton, spokesperson for the  Southwest Utah Public Health Department, said it is unclear what is behind the large jump in infections to start the month, but it is not the Thanksgiving holiday. Because of the five to 14-day gestation period of the virus, any infections that resulted from the holiday weekend have yet to show up.

“It will be at least another week before we see any impact from Thanksgiving,” Heaton said. “We’re unsure about what’s behind today’s high case number. We were actually starting to show a plateau.”

One of the sharpest increases locally was in the city of St. George, which had new infections nearly doubled between Tuesday and Wednesday. There were 171 people newly diagnosed with the virus in St. George Wednesday, and 71 more in Cedar City, which continues to see a rise in the spread of the virus.

Three people have died of COVID-19 in the last two days, all in Washington County.

There have also been three large outbreaks at long-term care facilities in Southern Utah, including two in Cedar City. The facilities are Red Cliffs Health and Rehab in Washington City, and Brookdale Cedar City and Beehive Homes #3 of Cedar City.

The Utah Department of Health does not provide exact figures for the number of those infected in large outbreaks at long-term care facilities, only that it is “more than five.”

COVID-19 information resources

St. George News has made every effort to ensure the information in this story is accurate at the time it was written. However, as the situation and science surrounding the coronavirus continues to evolve, it’s possible that some data has changed.

Check the resources below for up-to-date information and resources.

Southern Utah coronavirus count (as of Dec. 2, 2020, seven-day average in parentheses)

Positive COVID-19 tests: 12,552 (212.3 new infections per day in seven days, rising since Nov. 30)

  • Washington County: 9.978 (161.6 per day, rising)
  • Iron County: 1,975 (42 per day, rising)
  • Kane County: 187 (4.1 per day, rising)
  • Garfield County: 243 (1.1 per day, falling)
  • Beaver County: 169 (12.4 per day, rising)

New infections for major Southern Utah cities (numbers released ahead of Southern Utah numbers):

  • St. George: 171 (rising)
  • Washington City: 29 (falling)
  • Hurricane/LaVerkin: 23 (rising)
  • Ivins City/Santa Clara: 25 (rising)
  • Cedar City: 71 (rising)

Deaths: 94 (1.1 per day, steady)

  • Washington County: 79 (3 new since last report: hospitalized male over 85, male 65-84 at home, hospitalized male over 85.)
  • Iron County: 6 
  • Garfield County: 6
  • Kane County: 1
  • Beaver County: 2

Hospitalized: 54 (steady)

Active cases: 4,081 (falling)

Recovered: 8,377 

Current Utah seven-day average: 2,611 (rising)

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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