Summit County reports 6 new COVID-19 cases, 40 in total
Summit County reported six new positive cases of the COVID-19 virus Thursday, bringing the county’s total to 40.
A total of 138 people have been tested in the county. There have been 79 negative tests and 30 pending tests, according to the county’s update on its novel coronavirus webpage. There have been zero deaths.
The number of total tests isn’t a sum of positive, negative and pending tests (149) because the county is including some people in the positive number who are untested but have exhibited strong COVID-19 symptoms and had known close contacts with someone who tested positive. Additionally, pending tests will appear in the county a person was tested but will be transferred to the person’s county of residence once the results are returned, according to officials.
County officials believe the number of confirmed positive cases in the county is an underrepresentation of the real spread of the illness in the area. Anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness is being asked to enter them into the Summit County Symptom Tracker.
So far, there have been 29 individuals hospitalized, including people whose tests are still pending and people who were admitted with COVID-19 symptoms but tested negative.
Summit County officials and St. Anthony Summit Medical Center have been hesitant to release the number of individuals currently hospitalized. Amy Wineland, the county’s public health director, said trying to pin down a specific number could be tricky, especially with it changing frequently.
“It just doesn’t really provide much information,” Wineland said. “If I give one number right now, in 10 minutes it could be something different. … It’s a number that fluctuates by the hour. Someone might have been hospitalized last night and discharged this morning. It might be someone comes in who ends up going to Denver because they’re ill and need to get to lower elevations. Or it could be that someone is here for weeks at a time.”
In addition to rapid changes and accuracy concerns, St. Anthony spokesman Brent Boyer suggested there potentially could be concerns with HIPPA violations, given the small number of patients and the size of the Summit County community.
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