Graham County records 23rd COVID-19 death but cases continue to slow

Graham County reported its 23rd COVID-19 related death on Wednesday. The county now has had 766 total cases.

By Jon Johnson

jonjohnsonnews@gmail.com

SAFFORD – The Graham County Department of Health and Human Services announced a new death associated with COVID-19 on Wednesday. The death makes 23 in Graham County.

The deceased was a Safford resident over the age of 65.

Along with the new death, the county registered just one new positive Wednesday to increase its total to 766 for the course of the pandemic. The new case was listed as being from the San Carlos Apache Reservation.

The total is the third lowest out of Arizona’s 15 counties, with only La Paz County (498) and Greenlee County (58) being lower.  

Graham County listed just 32 new cases over the last week since Wednesday, Sept. 4, which is about half of what it had been experiencing previously.  

The lowering number of cases is required for businesses to reopen from Governor Doug Ducey’s executive order mandate.

As of Wednesday, the Graham County Department of Health and Human Services reports 766 total confirmed cases, with 518 recovered and 225 active. According to GCDHHS criteria, a positive test is not considered a recovered patient until they have 30 days symptom-free. Graham County has about 39,000 residents.

A total of 23 people, mostly all over the age of 65 and who had pre-existing health conditions, have died with COVID-19 in Graham County. 

According to the state’s database, Graham County’s positive test cases include 139 who are under 20 years of age, 327 between 20-44, 84 between 45-54, 85 between 55-64, and 130 who are 65 years old or older.

Greenlee County

Raymundo Frasquillo File Photo/Gila Herald: Greenlee County EMT Dawna Lizarraga adjusts a sign at the entrance to a free Covid-19 drive-through testing site on July 25. There will be another free COVID-19 drive-through testing at Gila Health Resources on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Those attending are requested to enter through the Family Medicine parking lot. Health professionals will also be administering free flu shots at the site.  

Greenlee County hasn’t had a new positive test for COVID-19 since Aug. 6 and currently sports a zero present positivity rating from the ADHS.

As of Tuesday, the Greenlee County Health Department has administered tests to 1,094 people, with 1,025 being negative, 58 positives, and 11 results pending. The county lists one active case, 55 recovered cases, and two deaths. Greenlee County has about 10,000 residents.

The breakdown of the Greenlee cases include three under the age of 20, 35 between 20-44, nine between 45-54, seven between 55-64, and four who are 65 years old or older.

There will be a free COVID-19 drive-through testing at Gila Health Resources on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Those attending are requested to enter through the Family Medicine parking lot. Health professionals will also be administering free flu shots at the site.  

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 having administered tests to 6,425 people with 5,474 negatives, 847 positives, and 104 results pending.

The Tribe lists 65 currently active cases, with 772 recovered cases, and 10 deaths.

The area breakdown on the reservation includes Gilson Wash – 122 positive, 114 recovered, four active, four deaths; Peridot – 285 positive, 259 recovered, 21 active, five deaths; 7-Mile – 127  positive, 112 recovered, four active, one death; Bylas – 253 positive, 233 recovered, 20 active; other areas – 60 positive, 54 recovered, six active.   

Statewide

For the state, the Arizona Department of Health Services reported just 496 new cases Wednesday to bring the total to 206,541 for the state. It reported 30 new deaths to bring the total fatalities due, at least in part, to COVID-19 to and amended 5,251 in Arizona. The state has about 7.3 million residents.  

Reported positive cases in the various counties include Maricopa County with 136,324, Pima County – 22,071, Yuma County – 12,344, Pinal County – 10,086, Navajo County – 5,661, Mohave County – 3,769, Coconino County – 3,409, Apache County – 3,375, Santa Cruz County – 2,779, Yavapai County – 2,386, Cochise County – 1,847, Gila County – 1,148, Graham County – 766, La Paz County – 518, Greenlee County – 58.

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