Pima resident dies from COVID-19

Victim is 28th death attributed to the virus in Graham County

By Jon Johnson


SAFFORD – A Pima resident over the age of 65 has reportedly died from COVID-19. The Graham County Department of Health and Human Services reported the death in its release Sunday.

The death marks the 28th person in Graham County whose death has been contributed to COVID-19. As of Monday, the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center lists three patients who are hospitalized due to COVID-19.   

On Monday, the Graham County Department of Health and Human Services reported 31 new positive results for COVID-19 in Graham County out of 215 tests. Out of the news positive tests, 21 came from Safford, eight from Thatcher, and two from Pima. The new results lifted Graham County’s total to 1,151 for the course of the pandemic.

The health department also advised that 30 out of 298 people tested positive at its testing blitz, however, a couple of the people had already tested positive prior and were still positive. Those patients’ new positive tests are not included in the new numbers due to being duplicates.

As of Monday, the Graham County Department of Health and Human Services reported 1,151 total confirmed cases, with 791 recovered and 332 actives. 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. Nearly 3 percent of Graham County has tested positive for COVID-19, with the currently active number at a little under 1 percent.

A total of 28 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 253 who are under 20 years of age, 492 between 20-44, 129 between 45-54, 112 between 55-64, 164 who are 65 years old or older, and one unknown.

As of Monday, the ADHS continues to list Graham County in its “moderate” business reopening status, even though the county is in the “substantial transmission” zone in both cases per 100,000 individuals, and percent positivity, for both the week of Sept. 27 and Oct. 4. ADHS metrics are roughly two weeks behind current results. The metrics show Graham County had 146 cases per 100,000 for the week of Sept. 27 and 140 cases per 100,000 for the week of Oct. 4, both over the 100 threshold to enter the substantial zone. The percent positivity for those two weeks was listed at 12.5 percent and 14.6 percent, respectively, both over the 10 percent threshold to enter the substantial zone.

Greenlee County

The Greenlee County Health Department reported an increase of three new positive tests over the weekend, raising its total to 103.

As of Sunday, the health department has administered tests to 1,543 people, with 1,440 being negative, and 103 positives. The county has 41 active cases, 60 recovered cases, and two deaths. Greenlee County has about 10,000 residents.

The breakdown of the Greenlee cases currently listed on the ADHS’ data dashboard includes 12 under the age of 20, 52 between 20-44, 21 between 45-54, 13 between 55-64, and four who are 65 years old or older.

Greenlee County’s percent positivity skyrocketed from 0 percent to 17.6 percent for the week of Oct. 4, putting that metric into the substantial zone. Its cases per 100,000 individuals also raised from 10 for the week of Sept. 27 to 39 for the week of Oct. 4, putting it into the moderate zone. However, Greenlee County is still in the “minimal transmission” status for business reopening, according to ADHS.  

Raymundo Frasquillo File Photo/Gila Herald: Volunteers hand out masks at an event in Morenci. Greenlee County’s mask mandate was recently extended into December.

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 Monday, the San Carlos Apache Tribe Department of Health & Human Services reported 21 new cases. To date, the Tribe has administered tests to 10,717 people with 8,895 negatives, 1,629 positives, and 193 results pending.

The Tribe lists 153 currently active cases, with 1,459 recovered cases, and 17 deaths.

The area breakdown on the reservation includes Gilson Wash – 285 positive, 247 recovered, 33 active, five deaths; Peridot – 560 positive, 500 recovered, 51 active, nine deaths; 7-Mile – 340 positive, 311 recovered, 27 active, two deaths; Bylas – 355 positive, 318 recovered, 36 active, one death; other areas – 89 positive, 83 recovered, six active.   


For the state, the Arizona Department of Health Services reported 801 new cases Friday to bring the total to 235,882 for the state. It reported just one new death to bring the total fatalities due, at least in part, to COVID-19 to and amended 5,875 in Arizona. The state has about 7.3 million residents and nearly two million tests have been taken.  

Reported positive cases in the various counties include Maricopa County with 154,722, Pima County – 27,575, Yuma County – 13,646, Pinal County – 11,743, Navajo County – 6,307, Coconino County – 5,090, Mohave County – 4,272, Apache County – 3,885, Santa Cruz County – 2,981, Yavapai County – 2,893, Cochise County – 2,121, Gila County – 1,863, Graham County – 1,151, La Paz County – 613, Greenlee County – 102 (county has it at 103).

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