By Jon Johnson
GRAHAM COUNTY – Another resident of the town of Pima’s death has been attributed to COVID-19, making 42 deaths total for Graham County to date.
The resident was over the age of 65. No further information regarding the resident was released.
The new data statistics from the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) released Thursday showed Graham County is in the “substantial transmission” category for both school and business metrics.
Graham County has exceeded the metric of 100 cases per 100,000 individuals with 564 cases per 100,000 and 512 cases per 100,000 for the last two weeks of November. The percent positivity was also in the substantial zone with 27.4 percent and 25.4 percent, respectively for those last two weeks.
The last metric that had been holding the county out of switching from moderate to substantial was the hospital visits in the region. However, those numbers have now increased to 10.9 percent and 11.9 percent, respectively for the last two weeks of November, putting Graham County in the substantial transmission zone. The southeast region includes Pima, Santa Cruz, Cochise, and Greenlee Counties as well.
Along with the new death notification, the Graham County Department of Health and Human Services (GCDHHS) announced an increase of 34 new cases on Friday to bring the total number of cases since the pandemic began to 2,740. The health department reported a current number of 1,679 recovered cases, 1,019 active cases, and 42 deaths. Nearly all of the deaths have been from patients over the age of 65.
Out of the new cases, 19 came from Safford, 11 from the San Carlos Apache Tribe, three from Thatcher, and one from Pima. In total, the age ranges for all the cases include 557 who are under 20 years of age, 1,172 between the ages of 20-44, 344 between the ages of 45-54, 297 who are between the ages of 55-64, and 364 who are 65 and older.
The Greenlee County Health Department listed seven new positive cases on Thursday, bringing its total number of cases to 357 since the start of the pandemic.
As of Thursday, the department has tested 3,300 people, with 2,943 negative results. The health department currently lists 126 active cases, 228 recovered cases, and three deaths.
Greenlee County could see 100 doses of the Moderna vaccine as early as this coming week with an additional 100-200 doses to follow in the following week. Healthcare workers will be first to receive the shots, followed by law enforcement, those in prisons and jails, teachers and essential employees, then those over 65 with high-risk medical conditions.
The county is not receiving the currently available Pfizer vaccine because it does not have the ability to store it at the extremely cold temperature it requires. The vaccine will be free to anyone who wants it.
On Friday, the ADHS listed 7,635 new cases to bring its total for the pandemic to 442,671 in Arizona. The department also listed 142 new deaths on Friday, to bring the total for Arizona to 7,819 dead attributed to COVID-19.
The state also began administering the first approved vaccine this week.
The breakdown of total cases by county includes Maricopa with 274,026, Pima – 57,250, Yuma – 24,103, Pinal – 23,143, Navajo – 10,116, Coconino – 9,744, Mohave – 9,536, Yavapai – 8,936, Apache – 6,731, Cochise – 5,746, Santa Cruz – 5,228, Gila – 3,886, Graham – 2,740, La Paz – 1,139, and Greenlee – 347 (county lists it at 357).