County records 60 new cases in last week alone
By Jon Johnson
SAFFORD – Spurred by eight new cases from the Graham County area of the San Carlos Apache Reservation and four from Safford, Graham County continues to increase in COVID-19 cases and is now up to 152 as of Sunday night.
The county, which has about 39,000 residents, has tested 1,749 patients and has 116 currently active cases, with 33 recovered cases and three deaths. Graham County has seen an increase of 60 new cases in the last week alone.
All close contacts of the 12 new cases have been notified and placed on quarantine until cleared by the health department.
Ages of the 152 total cases include 29 under the age of 20, 40 between the ages of 21-34, 59 between the ages of 35-64, and 24 who are 65 years old or older.
Graham County Health Department Director Brian Douglas advised that the county is expecting the current upward trend of new cases to continue for the next several weeks.
“We have to strengthen our efforts to slow the spread of the virus,” Douglas said. “It’s more important than ever to wear face coverings in public, social distancing by six feet, washing hands frequently, and staying home.”
While Greenlee County hasn’t seen as dramatic an increase as Graham County, numbers there continue to rise as well. On Sunday night, the Greenlee County Health Department reported a new positive test result for COVID-19, bringing the county’s total to 26 cases.
To date, Greenlee County has performed 500 tests with 35 tests currently pending. It has 14 currently active cases, with 11 recovered cases and one death.
San Carlos Apache Reservation
The San Carlos Apache Reservation stretches into both Graham and Gila counties and as of Sunday it had 170 positive tests out of 2,071 performed, with 289 tests pending.
The reservation as a whole has 121 currently active cases, with 48 recovered cases and one death. The reservation is also reporting 22 positive tests of tribal members who do not live on the reservation. Out of those numbers, there are eight active cases, with 10 recovered cases and four deaths.
For the San Carlos Apache Tribe, the positive tests on the reservation break down to Gilson Wash with 26, Peridot – 70, 7-Mile – 37, Bylas – 21, and other – 16.