While Gov. Brad Little and Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin are embroiled in a high-profile feud over masks, the state’s new coronavirus case numbers held steady this week.
As of Friday afternoon, the state and its seven health districts reported 192,088 confirmed or probable coronavirus cases, a 0.5 percent weekly increase.
Other metrics were mixed.
Vaccination numbers continued their freefall. With only 31,861 jabs administered in the past week, vaccinations fell for the seventh successive week and hit their lowest level since late January.
Hospitalization and ICU admission numbers were mixed. The state’s running total — a tally of overall hospital admissions tied to the pandemic — increased sharply. But the real-time numbers of Idahoans in hospitals with COVID-19 symptoms remained stable.
Numbers notwithstanding, coronavirus drama took center stage at the Statehouse Thursday.
Serving as acting governor while Little was attending an out-of-state conference, McGeachin issued an executive order prohibiting local mask mandates. The order, designed to allow school children to attend schools mask-free, sparked confusion. The Idaho School Boards Association questioned whether the order extended to schools, since state law and the state Constitution give trustees jurisdiction over student health issues. (Click here for Thursday’s coverage.)
The executive order proved to be short-lived. Upon his return to Idaho, Little rescinded McGeachin’s directive with one of his own. Little said McGeachin’s order “unilaterally and unlawfully takes away authorities” from trustees and other local officials, and amounted to “petty politics.” (Details on Friday’s developments here.)
Here are this week’s numbers, and comparisons with the previous week:
|Statewide data||May 21||May 28||Change, May 15-21||Change, May 22-28|
|Cases, confirmed and probable||191,068||192,088||1,061||1,020|
|Patients ever hospitalized||8,333||8,582||66||249|
|Patients ever admitted to ICU||1,408||1,450||14||42|
|Idahoans fully vaccinated||574,574||590,772||21,577||16,198|
|Vaccine doses administered||1,189,080||1,220,941||41,507||31,861|
(vaccinated Idahoans who later test positive)
|Total tests administered||1,327,944||1,340,453||16,305||12,509|
|Health care workers infected||10,669||10,728||69||59|
|Patients recovered, estimated||110,466||111,299||939||833|
|Total cases, ages 0-4||2,968||2,980||22||12|
|Total cases, ages 5-12||7,442||7,498||70||56|
|Total cases, ages 13-17||11,218||11,289||108||71|
|Total cases, ages 18-29||47,736||47,932||257||196|
Weekly positive test rate, as reported by the state: 5.0 percent for week ending May 22, up from 4.4 percent the previous week.
|Top 10 counties, by total cases||May 21||May 28||New cases, May 22-28||New cases per day, per 100,000 population|
|Ten hotspot counties (most daily cases, per 100,000 population)||May 21||May 28||New cases,
|New cases per day, per 100,000 population|