The coronavirus trendline: The week in review (5.1.20 edition)

Idaho’s coronavirus case numbers have increased by 9 percent in the past week — a continued slowdown in the rate of new cases, as Gov. Brad Little launches a two-month plan to reopen Idaho businesses.

As of 5 p.m. Friday, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare and local health districts reported 2,043 confirmed or probable cases of coronavirus, up from 1,872 cases a week ago.

This week’s 9 percent increase compares to a 13 percent increase the previous week.

On Thursday, Little lifted Idaho’s stay-at-home order, which had been in effect since March 25. The announcement will allow Idaho places of worship, daycares and youth camps to reopen. Lifting the stay-at-home order represents a step in allowing Idaho public schools to reopen this spring, if they meet a series of State Board of Education guidelines.

Some public schools are weighing their options to reopen. The private Nampa Christian Schools will reopen Monday — but will continue to offer remote learning options for parents who don’t want to send their children to school, or for staffers who are uncomfortable about returning to the classroom.

Little tied the reopening of Idaho businesses to a continued flattening of the state’s coronavirus curve. If cases or hospitalizations increase, he said, the state will slow or halt the four-stage reopening plan.

In other coronavirus news, the state added some 8,000 negative test results to its database Tuesday — two weeks of results from hospitals and clinics. That led to a significant spike in this week’s testing numbers.

Other weekly trends:

April 24 May 1 One-week change
Deaths 54 63 17 percent
Hospitalizations 166 178 7 percent
ICU admissions 63 76 21 percent
Cases, Ada County 642 691 8 percent
Cases, Blaine County 489 498 2 percent
Cases, Canyon County 226 259 15 percent
Cases, Twin Falls County 139 191 37 percent
Cases, Kootenai County 59 62 4 percent
Tests completed 19,361 29,335 52 percent
Positive test rate (approximate: some patients undergo multiple tests) 9.7 percent 6.9 percent -2.8 percentage points
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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