For the fourth successive week, new coronavirus case numbers dropped in Idaho, falling to their lowest numbers in more than two months.
Testing numbers also dropped sharply.
As of Friday afternoon, the state and its seven health districts reported 35,275 confirmed or probable coronavirus cases, a 5 percent increase in the past week.
New case numbers decreased in several Idaho coronavirus hotspots: Ada, Canyon, Bonneville, Bannock and Twin Falls counties.
But with test numbers dropping — by nearly 33 percent over the past week — the positive coronavirus test rate actually increased slightly this week.
In this week’s coronavirus headlines:
A plan to backfill K-12 budgets. State leaders want to use $99 million of federal coronavirus stimulus dollars to offset K-12 spending cuts previously ordered by Gov. Brad Little. The state also wants to launch a $50 million grant program to help families offset the costs of equipping students for online learning.
Schools move toward reopening. The state’s three largest school districts said they will begin to bring students back to the classroom this month. West Ada will resume face-to-face learning on Monday, Boise will open pre-k through second-grade classrooms on Sept. 21, and Nampa also will begin hybrid learning on Sept. 21. The news comes as public health districts are recommending a return to some classroom instruction.
Cases increase on campus. In its weekly summary posted Thursday, Boise State University reported 42 new coronavirus cases, up from 32 cases the previous week. Most cases involved students: 25 students who live off campus, and 14 living on campus. Fourteen of the university’s 115 isolation rooms were in use Friday, up from just two units the previous week.
Idaho State University reported 12 new cases for the seven-day period ending Tuesday, up from nine cases the previous week. Ten cases involved students.
Previously, the University of Idaho reported four new cases last week, down from 24 cases the previous week.
This week’s numbers (and comparisons with last week):
|Statewide data||Sept. 4||Sept. 11||Change, Aug. 29-Sept. 4||Change, Sept. 5-11|
|Cases, confirmed and probable||33,562||35,275||1,987||1,713|
|Estimated, patients recovered||16,071||18,052||1,896||1,981|
|Health care workers infected||2,183||2,348||179||165|
|Positive test rate (approximate: some patients undergo multiple tests)||12.8 percent||12.9 percent||+0.1 percentage points||+0.1 percentage points|
|Cases in select counties||Sept. 4||Sept. 11||New cases, Aug. 29-Sept. 4||New cases, Sept. 5-11|