SALT LAKE CITY — Utah leaders changed their pandemic stance in a press conference on Friday, specifically in response to the high-demand/low-supply dynamic of testing in the state.
The state epidemiologist, Dr. Leisha Nolen, said residents should assume they have COVID-19 if they have symptoms and stay home and isolate for five days.
“If you have symptoms, you most likely have COVID, so the benefit of getting that test is really decreased,” Nolan said. She said testing should be reserved for high-risk individuals or those who plan to be in contact with those that are high-risk.
“The virus has changed significantly,” Governor Cox said. He said contact tracing has become virtually impossible due to the high case counts in the state. The Utah Department of Health reported almost 13,000 cases statewide on Thursday. He said the number of hospitalizations from COVID-19 has increased from 434 on Christmas Day to 638 on Thursday.
“Cases among school-aged kids has increased from about 150 per day at Christmas time to about 3000 yesterday,” Cox said.
In the same timeframe since Christmas, Cox said daily tests have increased from 19,000 to 48,000.
Watch the full press conference: