Coronavirus

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BOISE (AP) — Idaho has reached an alarming milestone, with health officials reporting more than 100,000 residents have been infected with the coronavirus. At the end of the day Monday, the count stood at 101,698.

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The death count from the coronavirus topped 900 when data was reported at the end of the day Friday, Nov. 27, to stand at 909.

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With people making plans to travel for Thanksgiving despite the coronavirus pandemic, Mackay schools Superintendent Susan Buescher said her district is ready for the worst.

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Custer County was returned to the moderate-risk category for COVID-19, which means a face covering mandate is again in effect, after Eastern Idaho Public Health board members met Nov. 19.

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BOISE — Doctors serving Idaho and eastern Oregon spent hours last Tuesday trying to sway health districts, city leaders and the public to do more to stop the spread of coronavirus, warning that rationed care is looming in Idaho’s future.

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The death count from the coronavirus in Lemhi County increased to 7 at the end of the day Wednesday, Nov. 18.

As Custer County returned to the low-risk transmission level for the coronavirus, Mackay school board members considered requiring face masks in the low, green level of their response plan.

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Group gatherings are limited to 10 people and face coverings are required in Stanley under an emergency powers ordinance and disaster declaration resolution approved by the City Council Nov. 12.

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Challis High School freshman Dillon Fisher said he felt tired and had a dry throat on Sept. 16, the day of the homecoming parade. Two days later he learned he had the coronavirus.

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Idaho jumped past the 700-death mark from the coronavirus on Tuesday, Nov. 10. At the end of the day Tuesday, 714 Idahoans were counted among the dead from the virus.

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As Eastern Idaho Public Heath board members changed the metrics for active case rates in the eight counties they oversee, they also moved Lemhi County into the critical risk category for the coronavirus at their Nov. 5 meeting.

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At the end of the day Monday, Nov. 9, Idaho stood just two people away from recording 700 deaths from the coronavirus.

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Lemhi County recorded its first death from the coronavirus on Thursday, Oct. 29, the same day the state's death toll topped 600.

With input from parents and staff, Challis school board members adjusted the COVID-19 athletic events plan during a special board meeting Oct. 21.

In the face of students’ lackluster response to the current face coverings requirement within the Challis School District, board members chose to loosen the rule, among others, in their COVID-19 response plan at a special Oct. 21 meeting.

While a virus surge infects more eastern Idahoans, sends more to the hospital, and kills more, regional health officials are trying to get more people to voluntarily comply with public health guidelines and mandates.

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BOISE — Idaho Gov. Brad Little on Monday ordered a return to some restrictions to slow the spread of the coronavirus as intertwined health care systems across the state showed early signs of buckling.

BOISE — Idaho’s economic rebound following a shutdown because of the coronavirus pandemic is third-best in the nation based on the unemployment rate. But the tradeoff has come with the worst positive COVID-19 test rate in the country and a grim milestone: more than 500 dead. As of Sunday nig…

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The death toll from the coronavirus in Idaho hit 500 a week ago and has since pushed to 512, including one death in Custer County.

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Custer and Lemhi counties were moved back into the moderate-risk category for the transmission of COVID-19 at the Oct. 1 meeting of the Eastern Idaho Public Health District board, with mask mandates in place in both counties.

BOISE — Idaho will receive 530,000 rapid antigen tests that will be prioritized for schools, according to Gov. Brad Little. Officials said the tests take 15 minutes, are 95 percent accurate and conducted by collecting a nasal swab.

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Custer and Lemhi counties are back under mask mandates following the Thursday, Oct. 1 meeting of the Eastern Idaho Public Health District board and are both listed at moderate risk for transmitting the virus. 

When Custer County returned to the minimal-risk category related to the coronavirus, it prompted officials with the Challis and Mackay school districts to return to the green phases of their operating plans.

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Custer County has been in the moderate-risk category for the coronavirus since Sept. 3, and Custer County and Challis city officials said they will not enforce the health district’s mandate that people wear face coverings in public.

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Sitting six feet apart in the Stanley School gym, Challis school board members discussed the possibility of exempting the school from the district-wide yellow coronavirus status at their Sept. 8 meeting.

After some confusion earlier in the pandemic, Mackay school board members and Superintendent Susan Buescher clarified how federally expanded sick leave for teachers and staff will work going forward at a special board meeting held Sept. 8.

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Custer County has been listed in the moderate risk category for coronavirus since Sept. 3, which includes a mandate that people wear face coverings.

Because the coronavirus pandemic has slowed the manufacture of construction materials and supplies, Challis Mayor Mike Barrett said new bathrooms won’t be built in city park until November.

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A mandate to wear face coverings to help slow the spread of COVID-19 went into effect Thursday morning in Custer County. Lemhi County had been under the same rule for several weeks, but those restrictions were lifted Aug. 31.

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Coronavirus tracking metrics used by regional health officials to levy social restrictions were flawed throughout July because of delays in test processing, according to data analysis and interviews by the Post Register.

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Lemhi County has been moved into the moderate risk category because of the rapid spread of coronavirus, according to Eastern Idaho Public Health officials.

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Mackay Schools Superintendent Susan Buescher admitted it’s strange to start the upcoming fall semester on a Tuesday, but she said her teachers need an extra day to prepare due to the pandemic.

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BOISE — July was not a good month for Idaho on the coronavirus front, with two-thirds of all Idaho’s COVID-19 infections to date reported since July 1, and the month’s tally of deaths surpassing April’s high, making July the deadliest month for the virus in Idaho

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The city of Challis was the lone governmental entity in Custer County to apply for the state’s coronavirus-inspired tax relief program.

With $1.25 billion in federal money to get Idaho’s economy running again after the coronavirus lockdown, state officials have been pumping money into small businesses including Salmon River Propane and Salmon River Electric Cooperative.

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With large classrooms and small class sizes, Challis school board members agreed students will most likely be able to return to school buildings in August.

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Custer County commissioners, Fair Board members and people involved in planning the county fair met last week and unanimously agreed it must go on despite the coronavirus pandemic.

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BOISE — Health care leaders pleaded Tuesday for a statewide mask mandate, saying it's the best way to slow a rapid increase in coronavirus cases.

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People living, visiting or just passing through Stanley are asked to wear a face covering in public spaces, in accord with a resolution passed by the City Council last week.

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BOISE — For a time in Idaho it seemed like the worst of the coronavirus pandemic could be over. After an initial onslaught of confirmed cases in the spring, by June numbers had dropped to a point that state leaders felt comfortable allowing businesses to reopen and life to get back to nearly…

Chondo Martial Arts Academy students hit the mats early last month for the first time since the coronavirus forced the place closed, but they had to do it under new rules and regulations.

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Eastern Idaho Public Health officials tracked three new confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Custer County last week, more than doubling the count to five.

For many states and counties in the U.S., the dark days of the coronavirus pandemic in April unfolded on their television screens, not on their doorsteps. But now, some places that appeared to have avoided the worst are seeing surges of infections, as worries shift from major cities to rural areas.

Two former residents of Diamond Peak Health Care in Challis claim during the coronavirus lockdown, staff at the facility didn’t follow physical distancing and sanitation standards, failed to adhere to state health codes and mistreated residents.

Daybell Disappearance

Angie Dodge archive

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — The life-or-death journey made by mule deer during the second-longest big game migration in North America came down to their ability to squeeze through a fence — a discovery made by scientists using wildlife GPS tracking techniques to map animal migrations in the West in unp…

BOISE — A meager return of sockeye salmon to central Idaho this year despite high hopes and a new fish hatchery intended to help save the species from extinction has fisheries managers trying to figure out what went wrong.

As Custer County returned to the low-risk transmission level for the coronavirus, Mackay school board members considered requiring face masks in the low, green level of their response plan.

It’s been more than a month since Mackay school board members voted to remove the day of remote learning from the school week, and Mackay High School Principal Stephanie Green said all parties involved couldn’t be happier.

In spite of the decision by the Idaho State Board of Education to waive the senior project requirement for graduation this school year, seniors in Custer County should be prepared to complete their projects.

As his students ripped miniature whiffle balls across the Challis High School football field with golf clubs earlier this month, physical education teacher Ed Gregory made sure rules were being followed.

In the face of students’ lackluster response to the current face coverings requirement within the Challis School District, board members chose to loosen the rule, among others, in their COVID-19 response plan at a special Oct. 21 meeting.

Kylie Martin, who was born and reared in Challis, was crowned Miss Idaho Collegiate 2021 at a pageant held in Boise on Oct. 24. She will represent Idaho in the national competition in June.

Sawtooth association receives grantThe Sawtooth Interpretive and Historical Association in Stanley received a $5,000 grant from the Idaho Humanities Council through the National Endowment for the Humanities via a coronavirus act program.

Local students earn spots on UI dean’s listSeveral students from Challis and Salmon are listed on the spring semester dean’s list at the University of Idaho.

Jodie D. Gadwa Callison of Stanley has completed the doctor of dental medicine degree at the College of Dental Medicine-Arizona of Midwestern University.

Farr awarded scholarshipJessi Farr, a 2019 graduate of Challis High School, received a $500 scholarship from the Idaho Irrigation Association.