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Bonneville County moved to critical COVID risk level

Coronavirus

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IDAHO FALLS — Another county has advanced to the critical risk level of Eastern Idaho Public Health’s COVID-19 Regional Response Plan.

The health district announced Thursday that Bonneville County was moved to the most serious level after hitting the metric of 45 active COVID-19 cases per 10,000 people for three consecutive days. Bonneville joins Lemhi, Madison and Teton Counties in the critical risk category.

“When we get this level of community spread happening in our area, in our entire health district, every time you walk out of your home, you’re putting yourself at risk from contracting COVID-19,” EIPH Director Geri Rackow said during a Board of Health meeting Thursday. “That’s why again, we ask everyone to maintain physical distancing from others outside of your immediate household as much as possible and when that can’t happen, to wear a face covering because we know that does slow down the spread.”

The critical risk level indicates an alarming increase in COVID-19 cases. Bonneville had 93 new cases Thursday to bring the total of confirmed and probable cases to 6,644 since mid-March. The county currently has 591 active cases and 55 deaths, nine of which were reported since Monday.

A case is considered probable if a person has not been tested, or a test is pending, and the person has all the symptoms of COVID-19, has come into direct contact with an infected person, and developed symptoms within the expected timeframe.

The response plan explains that if a statewide order and a local public health order are in effect at the same time — which they are due to Gov. Little rolling Idaho back to a modified Stage 2 of its Idaho Rebounds reopening plan — the most restrictive guidelines should be followed unless exemptions are allowed.

“All of us need to play a part in slowing down this virus before our community is pushed over the edge to not be able to provide care and mantain critical services that we all expect as a society,” Rackow said.

Jefferson County also advanced to the high-risk level on Thursday, as well as Custer County was elevated to the moderate risk level. Movement to a lower risk level happens when a county has been below the threshold for 14 consecutive days.

In order to help slow the spread of COVID-19, and also influenza, EIPH recommends Idahoans:

  • Keep at least six feet between you and others in public
  • Wear face coverings in public places
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Wash your hands often
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Disinfect surfaces and objects regularly

Current COVID-19 case counts, details on all cases, and much more can be found on EIPH’s website and dashboard at www.EIPH.Idaho.gov. Questions can be answered by calling (208) 522-0310 or toll free at (855) 533-3160 (Monday-Friday, 8-5), emailing COVIDQuestions@eiph.idaho.gov, or asking through EIPH’s Facebook page at @EIPH.Idaho.

For more COVID-19 news, click here.

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