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Idaho COVID-19 positivity rates vary county-to-county

The statewide positivity rate is above 19%, but rates vary in each Idaho county, the highest being nearly 44%.

BOISE, Idaho — On Sunday, the Gem State reached a grim milestone as the total number of confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases surpassed 100,000. Additionally, the state is nearing 1,000 COVID-19 related deaths.

The recent influx in cases has caused Idaho's overall positivity rate to climb to over 19% as of last week. This marks the eleventh week the Gem State's positivity rate has risen.

According to the World Health Organization, a positivity rate of 5% or below is ideal. While Idaho's statewide positivity rate stands much higher than the recommended rate, each county in the state is experiencing an increase in cases differently. 

Central District Health, the health district that oversees Ada, Boise, Elmore, and Valley counties, is slightly off the state average with a positivity rate of 17.8%.

Ada County's positivity rate is at 18% while Elmore and Valley counties sit below the state average. Boise County jumped nearly seven points in one week to just over 16%.

Both Ada and Valley counties are currently under mask mandates.

Southwest District Health, which includes Canyon County, continues to see much higher numbers. The highest rate is in Payette County at nearly 29%. Canyon, Gem, Owyhee, and Washington counties are all above 20%.

Adams County is the only one of the six counties overseen by SWDH with a positivity rate below 20%.

Despite the high rate of positivity, both Owyhee and Washington counties saw their positivity rates decrease. However, not as many tests were performed as the week prior.

There are currently no county-wide mandates in any counties under SWDH's jurisdiction.

Those rates, however, are not the highest in the state. That belongs to Bear Lake County with a 43.5% positivity rate.

However, only 46 tests have been conducted.

Lewis, Fremont and Jerome counties are all reporting positivity rates of over 30%.

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