Graham County positive COVID-19 tests rising faster than other counties’ results

Eleven new positive tests put county at 442 total

By Jon Johnson

SAFFORD – Graham County has been the second-lowest of Arizona’s counties for COVID-19 transmission for most of the pandemic; that appears to be changing as Graham County has reported higher daily increases than four other counties this week.   

The county added 11 new cases Tuesday to now total 442. Graham County has added 334 cases in July alone. However, it still has the second-lowest total number of cases behind Greenlee (54) but it is creeping up on La Paz County (466) and has added 76 positive tests in the last three days.   

Out of the 11 new cases, five are from the part of the San Carlos Apache Reservation that is in Graham County, four are from Safford, and two are from Thatcher.

To date, the county has administered tests to 2,635 people with a total of 442 positives. The county lists 344 currently active cases, with 92 recovered cases, and six deaths. According to health department criteria, a positive test is not considered a recovered patient until they have 30 days symptom-free. Graham County has about 39,000 residents.

The ages of Graham County’s cases include 70 who are 20 years old or younger, 177 between 21-44, 59 between 45-54, 49 between 55-64, and 87 who are 65 years old or older. As of Wednesday, four people were hospitalized at the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center due to COVID-19 – down from eight just two days prior. With no news of any new deaths, it appears that the four previous patients recovered well enough to be released from the hospital.    

Greenlee County

The Greenlee County Health Department announced four new positive COVID-19 tests Sunday but didn’t have any new positives Monday.

To date, Greenlee has administered tests to 884 people, with 733 being negative, 54 positives, and 97 results pending. The county lists 30 active cases, 22 recovered cases, and two deaths. Greenlee County has about 10,000 residents.

San Carlos Apache Tribe

The San Carlos Apache Tribe stretches into both Graham and Gila counties and its cases add to the respective counties’ cases based on the geography of where the patients reside. On Tuesday, the San Carlos Apache Tribe Department of Health & Human Services reported 15 new positive tests for the reservation.

To date, the Tribe has administered tests to 3,914 people with 3,299 negative, 427 positives, and 188 results pending.

The Tribe lists 171 currently active cases, with 254 recovered cases, and two deaths.

The area breakdown on the reservation includes Gilson Wash – 62 positive, 31 recovered, 30 active, one death; Peridot – 156 positive, 96 recovered, 59 active, one death; 7-Mile – 69  positive, 53 recovered, 16 active; Bylas – 103 positive, 52 recovered, 51 active; other areas – 37 positive, 22 recovered, 15 active.   


For the state, the Arizona Department of Health Services reported 2,339 new cases Tuesday to bring the total to 168,273 for the state. It added 46 new deaths Tuesday to bring the total fatalities due to COVID-19 to 3,454 in Arizona. The state has about 7.3 million residents.  

Reported positive cases in the various counties include Maricopa County with 113,148, Pima County – 15,601, Yuma County – 10,657, Pinal County – 7,720, Navajo County – 5,130, Apache County – 2,950, Coconino County – 2,903, Mohave County – 2,828, Santa Cruz County – 2,543, Yavapai County – 1,661, Cochise County – 1,442, Gila County – 730, La Paz County – 466, Graham County – 442, Greenlee County – 54.

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