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    COVID-19 claims 22 lives in beleaguered San Juan County

    8 deaths at Blanding Care Center; most deaths in county are men

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    The death toll of the coronavirus pandemic continues to grow in San Juan County, reaching 22 in the past week. The number of local residents who have contracted the virus since the pandemic arrived in March is nearing 600, with approximately 12% requiring hospitalization.

    A doctor tends to a patient on a ventilator
    File photo

    The virus has been particularly challenging to elderly populations, with all 22 victims from populations of high-risk groups.

    The majority of the local fatalities have been men. In total, 73%, or 16, of the fatalities have been men.

    The wave of coronavirus that swept through the Four Corners Regional Care Center in Blanding has dissipated, with eight residents of the care center now dead due to the impact of COVID-19.

    The most recent fatalities at the Care Center since July 13 include one woman and four men, including a woman in her 90s, a man in his 90s, a man in his 80s, and two men in their 60s.

    In total, the care center reported that 33 residents and 25 employees have tested positive for the coronavirus since an employee tested positive on June 28.

    The center reports that “according to CDC and state guidelines, most of our residents and staff are now considered recovered from COVID-19.”

    The total number of positive cases in the county is 591, with 396 labeled as being recovered.

    Active cases total 173, with the Blanding area continuing to be the hotspot in San Juan County with 97 active cases.

    There are 28 active cases in the Montezuma Creek area, 21 cases in the Monument Valley / Navajo Mountain areas, 13 cases in the Monticello area, 10 cases in the Bluff area, and four cases in the Mexican Hat area.

    San Juan County claims the highest coronavirus rate in the State of Utah and has one of the highest rates in the country.

    Despite the challenges, life is moving ahead in several aspects.

    Parents and students are registering for the school year with three options from the San Juan School District. School-specific plans will be developed after the registration process is complete.

    This report was first published in the San Juan Record.

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