Coronavirus case numbers slow — across Idaho and in schools

Idaho’s coronavirus outbreak continues to come off of its omicron peak.

But while case numbers are slowing, hospitalization metrics aren’t as clear.

This week’s rundown:

Cases: The state and its health districts counted 12,058 new cases last week, a 10% dropoff.

On Saturday, the state and its health districts reported 403,232 confirmed or probable coronavirus cases.

Case backlog: Shrinking significantly.

“Data for the most recent two-week period are incomplete,” the state reported on its coronavirus website Sunday. “Due to the recent surge in cases, approximately 33,000 outstanding positive laboratory results are pending local public health district review and followup.”

A week ago, the backlog was 40,700 cases.

Child cases: Also decreasing.

For the week ending Saturday, 1,657 school-age children contracted coronavirus, a 10% decrease.

Positive test rate: Falling significantly, but still high.

For the week ending Feb. 5, 25.1% of coronavirus tests came back positive, down from 32% the previous week.

Still, any rate above 5% suggests a virus is out of control.

Hospitalizations: Mixed.

On Wednesday, Idaho reported 522 COVID-19 hospitalizations, down 13%.

But the state counted 121 ICU admissions, up 19%.

Nineteen children were in pediatric beds with COVID-19, unchanged from the previous week.

Deaths: The state reported 73 deaths last week, down slightly from 74 the previous week.

Idaho’s COVID-19 death toll stands at 4,552.

Vaccinations: Current vaccination rates, and weekly comparisons.

  • All Idahoans, ages 5 and up: 53.5%. (Last week, 53.3%.)
  • 5- to 11-year-olds: 14%. (Unchanged.)
  • 12- to 15-year-olds: 37%. (Last week, 36%.)
  • 16- and 17-year-olds: 42%. (Unchanged.)
  • 18- to 24-year-olds: 49% (Unchanged.)

Here are the latest booster shot rates:

  • All age groups: 43.3%. (Last week: 42.8%.)
  • 12- to 15-year-olds: 12.4%. (Last week: 11.5%.)
  • 16- and 17-year-olds: 19.7%. (Last week: 18.8%.)
  • 18- to 24-year-olds: 19.1%. (Last week: 18.6%.)

K-12 thumbnails

  • Blaine County: 19 active cases last week, 14 involving students. The district reported a total of 42 cases the previous week.
  • Boise: 141 positive cases last week, down from 358. The dropoff comes as Boise considers rescinding its school mask mandate.
  • Bonneville: Five active cases, down from nine.
  • Coeur d’Alene: 52 positive cases last week, down from 117.
  • Idaho Falls: 26 confirmed cases for the week ending Feb. 4, down from 94.
  • Moscow: 18 new cases last week, down from 37.
  • Nampa: 69 cases last week, down from 183.
  • Pocatello-Chubbuck: 24 cases reported Friday, down from 44.
  • Twin Falls: No new data available.
  • West Ada: 18 active cases, for a five-day period ending Sunday, down from 29 on Feb. 6.

Higher education thumbnails

  • Boise State University: A big dropoff: 56 cases, down from 162 cases the previous week. Of the new cases, 37 involved off-campus students, eight involved residential students and 11 involved faculty and staff. Two students were in campus isolation beds, down from 13 the previous week. The positive test rate also is falling rapidly, dropping to 4.1%, down from 9.5%.
  • Brigham Young University-Idaho: Three active cases Sunday, all involving students. BYU-Idaho reported a total of 10 active cases on Feb. 6.
  • College of Eastern Idaho: Eight cases, five involving students. CEI reported a total of six cases the previous week.
  • College of Idaho: Four cases in the past week, down from 16 cases the previous week. No students in isolation.
  • College of Southern Idaho: 11 new cases last week; four involving students, seven involving faculty and staff. CSI reported 27 new cases the previous week.
  • College of Western Idaho: Nine recent cases, down from 26 the previous week.
  • Idaho State University: 85 cases for the week ending Tuesday, down from 210 the previous week. Of the current cases, 59 involve students and 26 involve faculty or staff.
  • Lewis-Clark State College: Three active cases Friday, two involving students. The previous week, Lewis-Clark reported 12 active cases.
  • North Idaho College: 15 active cases last week, nine involving students.
  • Northwest Nazarene University: Six active cases reported last week, down from eight the preceding week. Four of the active cases involve students.
  • University of Idaho: 27 reported cases for the week ending Jan. 28, down from 104 the previous week.
Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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