Graham County records three more deaths due to COVID-19 as state exceeds 12,000 deaths and 700,000 cases

By Jon Johnson

SAFFORD – The Graham County Department of Health and Human Services recorded three new deaths attributed to COVID-19 on Friday – two from Safford and one from the San Carlos Apache Tribe. The deaths included two people who were in the 65 and older age group and one who was in the 55-64 age group.

The health department previously announced two deaths on Thursday as well, making five deaths in Graham County from COVID-19 in the past two days. The county has reported 12 deaths from COVID-19 for January alone, and 63 for the course of the pandemic. 

As of Friday, the Arizona Department of Health Services listed the state as having 12,001 deaths for the course of the pandemic out of 708,041 cases. 

The GCDHHS also reported 33 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday. 

According to the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation, and Reentry, its Safford state prisons have 647 confirmed cases of COVID-19 from its inmates with 306 inmates recovered. According to the Bureau of Prisons, FCI-Safford currently had five active cases from its inmates, with 624 recovered as of Friday. It also lists 11 active cases from employees and 23 recovered.

The new positive tests pushed Graham County’s total to 4,754 with 63 deaths. 

Arizona has been reported as the hotspot of the world for new COVID-19 cases, and Graham County is the third-highest county with the most cases per population. According to the Arizona Department of Health Services’ COVID-19 Data Dashboard, as of Thursday, Graham County was listed as having a percentage of 12,355 cases per 100,000 residents. Even with the most recent influx of cases in correctional facilities, however, Graham County is still behind Yuma County (14,729 per 100,000), and Santa Cruz County (13,538 per 100,000), and is just in front of Apache County (12,306 per 100,000), and Navajo County (12,223 per 100,000) in the rate of transmission per population. Conversely, Greenlee County – where there are no correctional facilities – has the lowest rate in Arizona with 4,819 per 100,000, according to Sunday’s numbers from the ADHS, and the state average is 9,848 per 100,000. 

Graham County’s demographics of cases include 674 under the age of 20, 2,326 between the ages of 20-44, 720 between the ages of 45-54, 512 between the ages of 55-64, 513 who are 65 years old or older, and nine who are unknown. 

Greenlee County 

Greenlee County added seven COVID-19 cases on Thursday to increase its total to 509, with 401 recovered, 102 active cases, and six deaths. 

As of Thursday, the Greenlee County Health Department has administered 4,432 tests, with 3,923 negative results, and 509 positive results.


On Friday, the ADHS listed 8,099 new cases to bring its total for the pandemic to 708,041 in Arizona. The department added 229 deaths attributed to COVID-19 on Friday, to bring the total for Arizona to 12,001 dead attributed to COVID-19. 

The breakdown of total cases by county includes Maricopa with 439,743, Pima – 94,697, Pinal – 39,091, Yuma – 33,872, Mohave – 17,872, Yavapai – 15,419, Coconino – 14,512, Navajo – 13,791, Cochise – 10,014, Apache – 8,837, Santa Cruz – 7,197, Gila – 5,641, Graham – 4,754, La Paz – 2,100, and Greenlee – 500 (county lists it at 509).