Salt Lake County health director amends COVID-19 recommendations as case rates drop

Dr. Angela Dunn, government director at Salt Lake County Well being Division, left, speaks on Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021. Dunn issued new COVID-19 recommends Monday as case charges drop and federal public well being specialists modified their tips. (Scott G Winterton, Deseret Information)

Estimated learn time: 2-3 minutes

SOUTH SALT LAKE — The highest well being official in Utah’s most-populated county is shaking up her COVID-19 prevention suggestions as the speed of latest circumstances continues to fall to pre-omicron surge ranges statewide.

Dr. Angela Dunn, Salt Lake County Well being Division director, unveiled a brand new set of suggestions Monday following adjustments introduced by the U.S. Heart for Illness Management and Prevention on Friday.

Her suggestions focus extra on vaccination standing and fewer on the wide-scale use of masks. For example, Dunn says residents must be “updated” with getting the COVID-19 vaccine, reminiscent of getting a booster shot when eligible.

Residents are additionally inspired to isolate themselves once they really feel sick and keep a wholesome life-style, together with good diet and common train.

“Making certain you and your family members are updated in your COVID vaccination continues to be the one finest solution to stop severe illness and loss of life,” Dunn stated, in a press release Monday. “And whereas high-filtration masks are now not important community-wide, they continue to be an essential layer of safety for many individuals in our group.”

New COVID-19 circumstances in Utah are again to the place they have been earlier than the dramatic spike of omicron-variant circumstances that started in late December and peaked in mid-January. That is additionally true of Salt Lake County, the place the speed of latest COVID-19 circumstances dropped from practically 4,500 new circumstances per day at its peak, to 200 new circumstances countywide this week.

Salt Lake County is now thought-about to be in a “medium” transmission degree, per CDC requirements. Which means residents are inspired to determine whether or not they need to put on a masks based mostly on their very own danger of significant COVID-19 an infection or the chance of somebody near them.

Excessive-filtration masks are nonetheless really helpful indoors for folks with “sure private circumstances.” Dunn explains that might imply a member of the family, coworker or shut good friend that is perhaps at the next danger for severe sickness.

Whereas the state well being division plans to maneuver COVID-19 testing to the well being care system by the top of March, Dunn provides testing — together with at-home testing — and remedy are additionally essential in containing any future group unfold of COVID-19. Residents who expertise COVID-19 signs are requested to hunt testing or in any other case stay at dwelling to cut back the chance of a future outbreak just like the latest omicron surge.

Those that are at excessive danger for severe sickness are additionally inspired to hunt remedy early in the event that they check optimistic, Dunn stated. Folks with the best dangers might qualify for monoclonal antibodies or antiviral remedy therapies straight away.

This story shall be up to date.

Extra tales you might be curious about

Proposed solution to Utah’s low sexual assault prosecution rates stalls in legislature

The Utah Legislature meets on the Capitol in Salt Lake Metropolis on Thursday, Jan. 27. Solely a fraction of sexual assaults reported in Utah are prosecuted, and a possible resolution proposed within the legislature this session shouldn’t be more likely to advance. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret Information)

Estimated learn time: 3-4 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY – Solely a fraction of sexual assaults reported in Utah are prosecuted, and a possible resolution proposed within the legislature this session shouldn’t be more likely to advance.

Analysis signifies a majority of sexual assaults in Utah go unreported, but Utah’s rape price stays above the nationwide common.

A KSL Investigation into Utah’s low sexual assault prosecution charges discovered poor monitoring and reporting all through the state’s felony justice system make it tough to know the true scope of the issue.

“After we suppose, ‘All proper, we’re one of many worst states within the nation for rape circumstances, what can we do to vary this?’ Now we have to take a look at what are our legal guidelines,” mentioned Dr. Julie Valentine, a BYU nursing professor on the forefront of sexual assault analysis in Utah.

Valentine has labored carefully with Rep. Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake Metropolis, who’s sponsoring HB98, a invoice launched within the legislature this yr that might give prosecutors an alternative choice.

Utah regulation at present permits prices for first-degree felony rape, which requires prosecutors to show a sufferer resisted or mentioned no. The following out there cost is sexual battery, a misdemeanor. HB98 would create a third-degree felony cost of sexual conduct with out affirmative consent, which might apply in cases wherein a sufferer didn’t explicitly give consent.

“We’d be capable to seize these circumstances the place a sufferer is unable to say no,” mentioned Valentine. “They is perhaps incapacitated, they is perhaps a drug-facilitated sexual assault, they is perhaps experiencing one thing referred to as tonic immobility or rape freeze syndrome, the place the concern is so excessive that they are unable to react and push again to point no or to say no, however they didn’t comply with this sexual assault.”

The Utah Affiliation of Prison Protection Attorneys has opposed the measure. Legal professional Steve Burton cited issues that affirmative consent shouldn’t be a broadly understood idea.

“It goes towards sort of the ideas of duty, the ideas of felony justice that we hope to guard,” he mentioned. “In an effort to make somebody a felony, as a way to convict anyone, and doubtlessly sentenced them to jail or jail, we need to ensure that they’re doing so as a result of they’re doing one thing that they know is incorrect. And this invoice goes a step too far as a result of it criminalizes issues that folks might not perceive is incorrect.”

Valentine mentioned the invoice is patterned after legal guidelines which have labored nicely in different states.

Rep. Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake City, seen here in the House Building at the Capitol complex in Salt Lake City on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021, is proposing legislation to give prosecutors more options in sexual assault cases.
Rep. Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake Metropolis, seen right here within the Home Constructing on the Capitol complicated in Salt Lake Metropolis on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021, is proposing laws to offer prosecutors extra choices in sexual assault circumstances.

“This actually can be a primary step to cut back sexual violence in our state by being one other device in a prosecutor’s toolbox for prosecuting sexual assault circumstances,” mentioned Valentine.

Nevertheless it’s a step Utah’s lawmakers have been gradual to think about this session. The invoice has but to be heard in a committee.

“It is most likely not going to maneuver this session,” mentioned Romero.

An almost similar invoice – additionally sponsored by Romero – failed final yr. However she says she will not surrender, pointing to different sexual assault-related measures she’s sponsored which have handed.

Romero and Valentine labored collectively on the laws that compelled the state to lastly take a look at a backlog of shelved sexual assault kits. She additionally had success in 2020 with a invoice declaring that earlier consent doesn’t represent consent throughout future sexual interactions.

“, it is irritating for me, but additionally, it is about training and consciousness and shifting how we view issues,” she mentioned.

Romero plans to work on the invoice over the summer season and take a look at once more.

In case you have skilled sexual violence, you may entry assist and sources by calling Utah’s 24-hour Sexual Violence Helpline at 1-888-421-1100. You may also name the Rape Restoration Heart Disaster Line at 801-467-7273 or the Nationwide Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 at no cost, confidential counseling.

Associated Tales

Extra tales it’s possible you’ll be focused on

Utah’s COVID-19 case rates drop more than 40% as omicron wave subsides

New Updates to College Scorecard Make Tool More Useful for Students and Families With Data About College Costs, Graduation Rates, and Post-College Earnings

Right now, the U.S. Division of Schooling launched updates to the Faculty Scorecard that make the instrument extra helpful for college kids and households weighing faculty choices.  The instrument additionally contains new and up to date info that could be useful to high school counselors, faculty entry suppliers, researchers, and different crucial stakeholders. The Division has improved the Faculty Scorecard interactive internet instrument, along with restoring a number of metrics that assist college students gauge how their potential establishment compares to different faculties throughout prices, commencement charges, post-college earnings, and different metrics. The modifications mirror the Division’s precedence of supporting and inspiring inclusive, inexpensive postsecondary packages that present sturdy profession outcomes for college kids.

U.S. Secretary of Schooling Miguel Cardona will spotlight these new updates to the Faculty Scorecard at this time, in the course of the 2022 Group Faculty Nationwide Legislative Summit, an occasion that brings collectively tons of of neighborhood faculty leaders from throughout the nation.

“For thus many college students and households, the faculty search course of could be overwhelming. However simply accessible, high-quality details about larger training establishments can assist college students decide which faculty or college is the perfect match for them,” stated U.S. Secretary of Schooling Miguel Cardona. “The up to date and enhanced Faculty Scorecard shines a highlight on affordability, inclusivity, and outcomes, over exclusivity and faculties that depart college students with out good jobs and with mountains of debt. This replace displays the Biden-Harris administration’s dedication to making sure college students stay on the coronary heart of the Division’s work.”

Updates to the Faculty Scorecard additionally embrace an annual refresh of the cumulative mortgage debt of pupil debtors at each the institution-level and by area of research inside every establishment, in addition to federal pupil mortgage compensation charges for the establishment.

For the primary time since 2018, the Division is publishing—each within the information information and on the patron website—institution-level earnings information, which offer an total sense of the profession outcomes for alumni of the establishment. The Scorecard additionally contains extra details about graduates who’re higher off for having gone to the faculty, by exhibiting the proportion of these incomes greater than the everyday employee with solely a highschool diploma.  

Faculty Scorecard information present important particulars for college kids and potential college students throughout all faculties, serving to them to make knowledgeable selections about their postsecondary training plans. The information additionally shine a highlight on accessible faculties which can be serving their college students nicely, together with by closing gaps within the completion charges amongst college students of shade in contrast with white college students and by making certain packages result in optimistic profession outcomes with manageable ranges of debt. Examples embrace:

  • College of Baltimore, a Predominantly Black Establishment in Maryland, enrolls Black college students as almost half of its enrollment, costs a lot decrease tuition than most four-year establishments, and noticed median post-college earnings of greater than $58,000.
  • Valencia Faculty, a neighborhood faculty in Florida, enrolls three in 4 of its undergraduate inhabitants as college students of shade and has narrowed its faculty completion price gaps; at this time, 45% of white college students and 41% of Hispanic college students graduate from this system.

The Faculty Scorecard contains many different examples of establishments which can be inclusive, typically under-resourced, and are working to enhance their college students’ outcomes.

The Faculty Scorecard builds on efforts by the Biden-Harris Administration to handle obstacles to school completion, notably for college kids from low-income backgrounds and college students of shade, and enhance accountability for establishments of upper training. Secretary Cardona mentioned these efforts as a part of his imaginative and prescient for training from early childhood training by larger training and profession pathways, which he laid out earlier this 12 months. These efforts embrace:

  • Launching the Institutional and Programmatic Eligibility negotiated rulemaking committee to develop sturdy guidelines to make sure profession coaching packages result in priceless credentials for his or her graduates;
  • Establishing an Workplace of Enforcement inside the workplace of Federal Pupil Support to determine and deal with main issues throughout establishments that pose widespread dangers to college students and taxpayers;
  • Offering billions in federal COVID reduction funding for establishments that serve excessive populations of scholars of shade and college students from low-income backgrounds;
  • Cancelling greater than $15 billion in pupil mortgage debt for 675,000 debtors throughout the nation; and
  • Proposing expanded entry by extra funding for Pell Grants for college kids.