Ninth coronavirus death in San Juan County
The global pandemic triggered by the coronavirus continues to impact San Juan County.
The county is split into two areas, with the northern portion of the county under a yellow status and the southern portion of the county in the Navajo Nation under red status.
The Navajo Nation is continuing to have 57-hour weekend curfews to fight the spread of the virus. The Navajo Nation, in particular, has had one of the highest infection rates in the country.
The number of cases continues to rise, with cases in San Juan County topping 400 since the outbreak began in March. This represents an increase of 14 cases in the past week.
Public health agencies generally count a case as recovered two weeks after it is diagnosed. Using that criteria, there are approximately 363 San Juan County residents who have recovered from the virus.
However, while many have recovered, a number of area residents continue to suffer from the effects of the virus long after the two-week period.
Nine San Juan County residents have passed away from the effects of the virus, including one this week, a man in his 50s from the Blanding area.
Limited details about the nine fatalities are listed in the adjacent chart. In general, the mortality rate for diagnosed cases in San Juan County is 2.25 percent. The mortality rate in Utah is less than one percent.
More than 50 San Juan County residents have been hospitalized because of the virus. They represent 12.75 percent of the total diagnosed cases, which is nearly twice as high as the 6.5 percent of Utah cases that have been admitted to the hospital.
In general, the local residents who have been hospitalized have been sent out of the county.
San Juan Public Health Director Kirk Benge urges local residents to practice social distancing whenever it is possible. He adds that wearing masks is helpful when social distancing is not available.
Benge adds, “San Juan Public Health would like to remind everyone that while Utah has moved to lesser restrictions for the general population, high-risk or vulnerable individuals, including those 65 and older and those of any age who are immunocompromised with chronic conditions like serious heart disease, respiratory issues, obesity, kidney disease, or diabetes, should continue to follow stricter health protocols, even while the rest of the state is following relaxed health orders.
“We encourage all to make every effort to help protect these individuals and keep them safe.”