By Jon Johnson
GRAHAM COUNTY – The Graham County Department of Health and Human Services announced 11 new positive COVID-19 test results on Monday, putting the county’s total for the pandemic at 218. Graham County has about 39,000 residents.
Currently, there are 163 active cases in Graham County, with 51 recovered cases and four deaths. Locally, the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center currently is treating four COVID-19 positive patients who are hospitalized.
Out of the 11 new test results, seven are from Safford, three are from Thatcher, and one is from Pima. All known close contacts of the new positives have been notified and placed on quarantine until cleared by the health department.
Graham County’s COVID-19 cases include 38 under the age of 20, 62 between the ages of 21-34, 85 between the ages of 35-64, and 33 who are 65 years old or older.
While the case count is increasing – especially in other counties throughout the state – daily hospitalizations peaked June 16 and have fallen throughout the state since then and the mortality rate has been steadily declining since mid-June as well, according to an independent study by Anchor & Helm Decision Advisors LLC, which was commissioned by State Rep. Mark Finchem (R, LD-11).
“In an attempt to reproduce the work of the Arizona Department of Health Services (AZDHS), I requested the actual data set used for creating the graphs and tables found on the AZDHS dashboard,” Finchem said. “I was told that the data sets are confidential. It is disappointing that an executive agency would block the Legislature from examining data necessary to provide oversight of the agency’s work. Without the data, we cannot accurately reproduce the work done by AZDHS, and when we are talking about destroying people’s livelihoods, that is a big deal. Transparency is a necessary component of oversight.
For months the media has emphasized the ‘explosion of new cases’ and ‘skyrocketing’ case count for individuals testing positive for the CCP Virus (COVID-19). And for months, I have been asking why that is the focus when the vast majority (over 90 percent) of those testing positive are either asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic requiring no medical care.”
As of Monday night, the Greenlee County Health Department is reporting 33 positive tests for Greenlee County, with 20 active cases, 12 recovered cases, and one death. Greenlee County has about 10,000 residents.
San Carlos Apache Reservation
The San Carlos Apache Tribe Department of Health & Human Services reported 12 new positive COVID-19 tests on Monday, putting its total for the pandemic to 212.
The SCAT currently has 87 active cases, with 124 recovered cases, and one death. It has 198 tests that are pending.
The breakdown on the reservation includes: Gilson Wash – 31 positive, 22 recovered, one death, eight active; Peridot – 86 positive, 49 recovered, 37 active; 7-Mile – 47 positive, 31 recovered, 16 active; Bylas – 28 positive, 31 recovered, 15 active; and other areas – 20 positive, nine recovered, 11 active.
According to San Carlos Apache Tribe Chairman Terry Rambler, nine of the 12 cases are connected to previously identified clusters and were identified through contact tracing and already quarantined.
“If these nine (who) tested positive while at the Alternate Care Site were out and about, they would’ve infected more people,” Rambler said. “But being quarantined limits the spread of the virus. May our Creator God heal all the people (who) have contacted the virus.”
According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, the breakdown of the number of positive cases in each county includes Maricopa County at 84,233, Pima County – 12,144, Yuma County – 8,629, Pinal County – 5,945, Navajo County – 4,482, Apache County – 2,611, Coconino County – 2,523, Santa Cruz County – 2,208, Mohave County – 1,937, Yavapai County – 1,189, Cochise County – 1,095, Gila County – 468, La Paz County – 412, Graham County – 218, and Greenlee County – 33.