UTAH! Mural
camera_alt Lauren Wester

COVID-19 Updates

COVID-19 is now classified as a pandemic, a global outbreak of disease. Pandemics happen when a new virus emerges to infect people and can spread between people sustainably. Because there is little to no pre-existing immunity against the new virus, it spreads worldwide.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is infecting people and spreading easily from person-to-person. Cases have been detected in most countries worldwide and community spread is being detected in a growing number of countries. On March 11, the COVID -19 outbreak was characterized as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO).

This is a rapidly evolving situation and information will be updated here as it becomes available.


Thank you to everyone that participated in our Virtual Town Hall on Monday, March 30th 


Devastating circumstances require resourcefulness, optimism and generosity. As the tourism industry has been devastated by COVID-19 and the sacrifices it has...

Salt Lake County

(Announcements to local partners from Unified Command: Mayor Jenny Wilson, Gary Edwards, Clint Mecham)

Salt Lake County (SLCo) is hard at work addressing the needs of our community. We continue to monitor county, state, and national data. Preparations to accommodate an influx of patients and those who need a place to quarantine or isolate are progressing. Acquiring personal protective equipment (PPE), medical equipment and staffing continues to be challenging and a priority. Economic plans and business assistance continue to be fine-tuned with resources identified. Here are the updated items for today:

Suggested Guidance for Local Law Enforcement: (We Ask That You Consider and Pass Along)

While we recognize that each municipality controls its own law enforcement agency, we hope to have a coordinated approach. If you agree please pass along the following (or a version of the following):

In an effort to minimize confusion by the public, Salt Lake County is seeking to have law enforcement enact fairly uniform methods for violations of its recent health order. The order is a stay at home order but allows for a comprehensive list of essential activities and businesses and thus we believe there will continue to be a large number of residents moving throughout the community. However, we know mass gatherings can significantly spread the virus. State law requires penalties for violating a local public health order, class B for the initial offense, class A for repeat offences):

Salt Lake County is recommending:


  1. When law enforcement witnesses or is notified of violations of six-feet social distancing it should determine if it is a family unit. The order allows for family units to be together so there will be cases of the violation of social distancing, which are not violations of the order.
  2. If not a family unit, and a minor violation, law enforcement should educate/give a verbal warning. If there are repeat or egregious violations (large group gatherings in parks, for example) law enforcement should consider citations.
  3. At this time, given the large number of essential activities that allow for movement through the community, we are asking that law enforcement not stop people traveling within the County, require credentials or letters identifying the whether the travel is authorized under the Order, nor set up check points.

Other items:

  • Salt Lake County has issued a Health Order regarding “Stay Home, Stay Safe”. Details including the Health Order, infographics, and list of essential services can be found at https://slco.org/covid-19/
  • SLCo is sending out instructions to municipalities on how to request equipment and PPE. We recognize that equipment and PPE is in high demand and short supply throughout the county, state and country.
  • The State has announced a program for essential employees (Health Care and Emergency Responders) to access childcare. Individuals can go to www.jobs.utah.gov to register for this free childcare program.
  • The State of Utah has issued a Directive on “Stay Home, Stay Safe”. Details about the directive can be found at https://coronavirus.utah.gov/full-text-governors-stay-home-stay-safe-directive/.
  • President Trump announced that the Administration will extend CDC guidelines for social distancing through April 30, 2020.
  • The Disaster Distress Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year, national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress related to disaster. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common reactions after a disaster. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor.
  • The Federal government has passed several pieces of legislation. For programs, funding and assistance, please go to https://www.coronavirus.gov/.
  • People who are intentionally spreading and infecting others with COVID-19 could face Federal terrorist charges, according to the Department of Justice.
  • SLCo is creating up to 6 multidisciplinary outreach teams that will consist of a homeless outreach worker, peer support specialist, and a public health nurse (we are requesting 3 nurses to rotate across the teams). The teams will outreach to the unsheltered homeless population county-wide. The primary purpose of the outreach is to reduce and mitigate the risk of the spread of COVID-19 among the unsheltered homeless population by screening for COVID-19 & connecting to medical care when appropriate, educating individuals about preventative steps they can take, promoting social distancing by seeking to minimize the size of encampments, and conducting wellness checks & addressing basic needs of the unsheltered population (e.g., food & water). The outreach teams will, also, seek to connect individuals to homeless services and housing. This approach is consistent with CDC interim guidelines for COVID-19 response with the unsheltered homeless population.
  • UTA is reducing the frequency of routes. More information can be found at www.rideuta.com. New frequency will go into effect on April 5th.
  • FDA has authorized emergency use of 20 (+7 this week) new COVID-19 diagnostic tests, including one that provides results in less than 15 minutes.
  • Damage Assessments continue to be collected and should be submitted to the State of Utah (State) by April 22nd. We are continuing to be on alert for aftershocks, which are expected to continue.

Please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns.

  • Health Orders, Facility closings, and COVID-19 items can be found at https://www.slco.org/covid-19/.
    • Health Department Orders:
      Salt Lake County Health Department (SLCoHD) declaration and health orders for COVID-19 remain in effect. All retail and service-oriented businesses are required to implement social distancing measures and exclude symptomatic workers from working. Social distancing should include at least 6-feet between customers in the establishment. Workers symptomatic with respiratory illness or fever must not be in the business—no exceptions.
    • Specifics for the food and beverage industry:
      • Food Service: Dine-in operations are prohibited; takeout, curbside, pickup, drive-thru, delivery (including by third-party services), and mobile food (trucks/carts) are allowed with some modifications.
      • Food Delivery: Drop service only.
      • Grocery Stores and Cafeterias: Eliminate seating areas as well as any other opportunity to congregate.
    • Salt Lake County Facilities:
      Salt Lake County has closed the following facilities: senior centers, recreation centers, libraries, arts and cultural facilities, Equestrian Center, Clark Planetarium, Discovery Gateway, the Salt Palace, and the Mountain America Expo Center. Closures are a way to prevent Corona virus outbreak. Salt Lake County is closely monitoring and evaluating the situation and will provide information as it becomes available.

  • Salt Lake County Health Department Orders to limit gatherings of no more than ten (10) was a result of Salt Lake County adjusting our former health order (up to 50) into compliance with the State of Utah health order (up to 10), which they signed on March 17th. We have been communicating with the State and will notify you if any changes occur. Salt Lake County does not have the ability to impose a health order without the State defined penalties. Salt Lake County has the following website available for businesses who have questions. https://slco.org/health/COVID-19/business/
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic: Eligible Emergency Protective Measures fact sheet.

Important Contact Information:



Coronavirus Info Line: 800-456-7707

Healthcare Workers: 888-374-8824

State Media Inquiries: 685-429-0015

SLCo Intergovernmental Liaison (Ryan Perry): 801-541-0539, rperry@slco.org


Utah Health Department Update:

April 1, 2020 7:30 am

Salt Lake County

SLCo issues public health order closing some businesses, but businesses that can effectively social distance can generally remain open.


  • Confirmed cases: 425



  • Confirmed cases: 887
  • 18,513 people tested (4.8% positive)
  • 5 deaths 
  • Case count site linked above now has statewide case demographics and hospitalization data

Governor issues “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Directive
These directives establish minimum statewide standards. In consultation with the State, local authorities may impose more stringent directives and orders to address the unique situations in different areas of Utah. They are not be confused with a shelter-in-place order.

Updates & Resources:


United States




  • CDC issued travel advisory for New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut to avoid nonessential travel for 2 weeks
  • Global Level 4 Health Advisory: Do not travel; return home if overseas





For media inquiries, contact Shawn Stinson, 801-245-0106.​