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PM News Brief: Spiral Jetty, Bernie Sanders' Delegates & Pre-Pay At State Parks

Photo of the spiral jetty
Gianfranco Gorgoni, “From the portfolio Smithson’s Spiral Jetty Photographs, 1970-2014,” 2013, digital print, 13 x 17 in. Utah Museum of Fine Arts, purchased with funds from The Paul L. and Phyllis C. Watts Fund, UMFA2018.6.12. Photo © Estate of Gianfranc
Spiral Jetty — a massive piece of land art Robert Smithson created in the northern part of the Great Salt Lake — turns 50 this month.";s:

Wednesday evening, April 8, 2020

STATE

Visitors Required To Answer Questions About COVID Exposure

People traveling to Utah will be asked to fill out an online form and answer questions about their possible exposure to the coronavirus under an order announced Wednesday by Gov. Gary Herbert. The survey will ask if travelers have been tested for COVID-19 in the last two weeks, if they are experiencing symptoms and where they have been. The data will then be sent to the Utah Department of Health, which can follow up with people who have tested positive and ask them to self-isolate. For people who have symptoms, the department may ask them to get tested. Read KUER’s full story.Sonja Hutson 

Intermountain Healthcare And University Of Utah Team Up For Clinicals

Intermountain Healthcare and the University of Utah announced a partnership Wednesday that will look at “whether hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin have any effectiveness in preventing hospitalization in patients with positive testing for COVID-19” according to Dr. Brandon Webb. Webb is with Intermountain and said they are focusing on high risk patients. The two drugs are commonly used to fight malaria and pneumonia, respectively. They will run tests on 2,300 people with the disease and will also focus on “viral shedding” to understand how the virus spreads in households. — Grace Osusky

COVID-19 Update

As of Wednesday, Utah has seen 1,846 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since late February. Testing continues to increase, as 36,116 people have been screened. Despite the increase in cases and hospitalizations, the state remains steady with only 13 deaths. Salt Lake, Summit and Utah counties continue to have the most total cases. — Ross Terrell

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Bernie Sanders Delegates Up For Grabs

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders won Utah’s Democratic Presidential Primary last month, but on Wednesday, he dropped out of the race. That means seven of his Utah delegates will be assigned to another candidate, but Sanders will keep his remaining nine, unless he decides to release them, according to Utah Democratic Party Chair Jeff Merchant. — Sonja Hutson

State Parks Open Online Pre-Pay Option

Visitors to Utah’s state parks can now pay daily admission fees online before they arrive. The Utah Division of Parks and Recreation announced the new online system Wednesday. The goal is to reduce interaction between park rangers and guests. If you do pre-pay online, you’ll be required to verify that you live in the county of the park you're visiting. Upon arrival, visitors must show a copy of their receipt or a digital version of their pass. — Grace Osusky

NORTHERN UTAH

Utah Universities Help With PPE Shortage

Universities across Utah are attempting to fill the shortage of personal protective equipment for health care workers. At Weber State University officials announced Wednesday they have 3D printed 85 face shields that were then given to the Weber-Morgan health district. At Utah State University they too have started 3D printing face shields to give to local health care workers. USU says they have received a request from the Bear River Health Department and Intermountain Healthcare for 550 of the devices. — Grace Osusky

Spiral Jetty Turns 50

Spiral Jetty turns 50 this month. Robert Smithson created the massive piece of land art located in the northern part of the Great Salt Lake back in 1970, according to the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. Visitors can reach it by heading to Rozel Point past the Golden Spike National Monument. The spiral, made up of black basalt rocks, is 1,500 feet long and its coil is 15 feet wide. The museum calls the artwork iconic as it continues to disappear underwater and re-emerge, though it is visible now. — Ross Terrell

REGION

Utah And New Mexico Among Leaders In COVID-19 Testing

New Mexico and Utah are among the top U.S. states when it comes to testing for COVID-19. That’s according to a collaboration between journalists and data scientists, called the COVID Tracking Project. The states have done more than 1,000 coronavirus tests for every 100,000 residents. By contrast, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and Nevada are middle-of-the-pack. And Colorado is in the bottom fifth. — Rae Ellen Bichell, Mountain West News Bureau

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