‘The trends are going in the right direction’: Governor gives coronavirus update

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Utah Governor Gary Herbert was joined by Nathan Checketts from the Utah Department of Health and Dr. Mark Briesacher from Intermountain Healthcare to give an update on the current pandemic situation in Utah.

“The trends are going in the right direction, I’m grateful for that.” Herbert said.

Right now cases are declining and as of Thursday, the state’s rolling 7-day average for positive tests is 354 per day. The rolling 7-day average for percent of positive laboratory tests is 8.6%.

The governor talked about how there was more work to do, about schools, and trying things then if they don’t work pulling back.

He then did a question and answer session with Nathan Checketts from the Utah Department of health surrounding some of the common fears of getting tested and getting help with coronavirus.

An issue has come up where people are showing fear of getting treated for other needs they may have beside coronavirus. The governor had Dr. Mark Briesacher explain COVID-19’s impact on hospitals and what you can do if you need medical attention.

He explained that if you come into the hospital with other emergencies, citing heart symptoms or stroke that you are moved into a separate area than the COVID-19 areas.

He also explained how they are trying to keep patients safe with gowns, masks, shields, and air purification. He also said there were other things, extra cleaning, extra testing, he said they are trying to keep the medical people safe, families safe and patients as well.

When it came to opening the schools. The governor re-iterated there is no way to have zero risks. He said they are trying to minimize the risk, and that all plans have a plan B if infections start to rise. He cited an example of a class catching COVID-19 then how do you quarantine a class? How do you quarantine school? Can you drop back to all distance learning online? He said “All of the plans have a plan ‘b’ in case it doesn’t work.

Dr. Angela Dunn was not in this briefing the governor said she was taking some time off after working for six months on the pandemic.

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