SALT LAKE CITY — Nearly 1 in 4 COVID-19 patients in the Beehive State who has required hospitalization for the virus also has diabetes, according to new data released by the Utah Department of Health.

© Spenser Heaps, Deseret News
Health care workers test people for COVID-19 at a temporary testing site at the Utah State Fairpark in Salt Lake City on Saturday, May 9, 2020. Saturday’s testing event was the first in a series aimed at providing testing to Utah’s underserved communities.

The data also illuminates what doctors and health officials have said since early in the pandemic — that although those without underlying conditions are just as susceptible to catch the virus, they are far less at risk from the disease than those who do have other conditions.

More than half of Utah’s hospitalized cases have had at least one underlying health issue.

At least 273 of the state’s 512 people who required hospitalization after contracting COVID-19 had one or more known underlying conditions, while just 103 did not. State officials do not know the medical histories of the other 130 cases.

Utah health officials on Sunday also reported an additional death from COVID-19 as well as 148 more confirmed coronavirus cases in the state.

The latest fatality, described only as a Salt Lake County man over the age of 60, brings the state’s death toll to 67, according to the Utah Department of Health.

Data on the underlying conditions of those who have died with the disease has not been released due to federal patient confidentiality laws, as the number remains low enough that releasing specifics on cases could risk identifying them, state officials have said.

Out of all Utah’s confirmed cases, those who didn’t have preexisting conditions total 1,921 cases, while those who did total 1,585. Meanwhile, for 2,745 of Utah’s 6,251 total cases, it’s unknown whether they had other health conditions

The data shows that while former smokers make up the highest number of cases with a defined underlying condition, those with diabetes have required hospitalization at a higher rate — 23% — followed by those with cardiovascular conditions — 18%. Former smokers make up about 14% of hospitalized cases.

That rate could play into Utah’s death rate of 1.07%. Lifestyle factors, including a lower prevalence of smoking, have in part been attributed to Utah’s lower death rate from the virus when compared to other states. The national death rate is 5.98%, according to NASA’s Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center.

Utah confirmed COVID-19 cases with underlying health conditions: Former smoker, 496 cases; 70 hospitalizations Chronic pulmonary, 411 cases; 65 hospitalizations Diabetes, 348 cases; 117 hospitalizations Cardiovascular, 273 cases; 93 hospitalizations Current smoker, 197 cases; 17 hospitalizations Immunocompromised, 165 cases; 41 hospitalizations Neurologic, 134 cases; 37 hospitalizations Chronic kidney, 83 cases; 38 hospitalizations Chronic liver, 43 cases; 13 hospitalizations Other, 487 cases; 113 hospitalizations

Out of the 6,251 who have tested positive for the new coronavirus during the pandemic, 3,033 are now considered recovered after passing the three week point since their diagnosis.

Just over 90 people currently remain hospitalized with the new coronavirus, while 130 hospitalized cases are under investigation.

In Utah, 3,216 more people received tests, bringing the total to 146,510. The daily growth rate Sunday was 2.4%. The overall rate of those who tested positive remains about 4.3%.

The breakdown of Utah cases, hospitalizations and deaths by health district: Salt Lake County, 3,291; 293 hospitalized; 44 deaths Utah County, 1,346; 76 hospitalized; 11 deaths Summit County, 385; 33 hospitalized; 0 deaths Davis County, 336; 28 hospitalized; 2 deaths Weber-Morgan, 194; 26 hospitalized; 2 deaths Wasatch County, 176; 8 hospitalized; 1 death Southwest Utah, 164; 13 hospitalized; 3 deaths San Juan County, 147; 15 hospitalized; 3 deaths Tooele County, 77; 6 hospitalized; 0 deaths Bear River, 78; 11 hospitalized; 1 death Central Utah, 28; 2 hospitalized; 0 deaths Southeast Utah, 13; 0 hospitalized; 0 deaths TriCounty (Uinta Basin), 16; 1 hospitalized; 0 deaths

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