Arizona reported another 1,054 new COVID-19 cases and 56 new known deaths on Saturday, as hospitalizations for the disease continue steady declines.
Inpatient hospitalizations, ICU beds in use and ventilators in use all dropped slightly on Friday, continuing general downward trends over the past three to four weeks, according to hospital data reported to the state.
Identified cases rose to 186,107 and known deaths totaled 4,137, according to the daily report by the Arizona Department of Health Services.
The 56 new known deaths reported on Saturday represent the new deaths identified by the Arizona Department of Health Services that day, but many occurred days and weeks prior. Given recent slow test result turnaround times, new daily reported cases often represent cases that occurred days and weeks prior.
Saturday’s dashboard shows 82% of inpatient beds and 83% of ICU beds were in use, which includes people being treated for COVID-19 and other patients. Overall, 39% of ventilators were in use.
Most people who get the disease are not hospitalized. The state does not report the number of recovered cases, although it does report hospital discharges.
For much of the pandemic, testing did not keep up with the virus’ spread, but the state recently has worked to expand testing and reduce results turnaround time, which had been up to two weeks or longer for some tests. Sonora Quest, the state’s largest test processor, reports it has nearly fully cleared its backlog of tests and is returning results within about three days.
The state passed 1 million total diagnostic tests on Friday, although testing dropped significantly over the course of July.
Of known test results from last week, 11% have come back positive, according to the state. A high percentage of positive tests means there is not enough broad testing and the virus is widespread. A positivity rate of 5% is considered a good benchmark that the spread is under control.
Here’s what you need to know about Saturday’s new numbers.
Reported cases in Arizona: 186,107
- Cases increased by 1,054, or 0.57%, from Friday’s 185,053 identified cases since the outbreak began.
- County cases: 125,545 in Maricopa, 17,728 in Pima, 11,512 in Yuma, 8,356 in Pinal, 5,368 in Navajo, 3,155 in Apache, 3,150 in Mohave, 3,076 in Coconino, 2,658 in Santa Cruz, 1,980 in Yavapai, 1,600 in Cochise, 905 in Gila, 539 in Graham, 478 in La Paz and 57 in Greenlee, according to state numbers.
- The state’s total case count includes individuals who tested positive on a diagnostic PCR test, as well as individuals who tested positive on an antibody test who had COVID-19 symptoms or were linked to a known case. Of the cases, 99% are individuals with a positive diagnostic test, according to the state health department.
- The rate of cases per 100,000 people is highest in Santa Cruz County, followed by Yuma, Navajo and Apache counties.
- The Navajo Nation reported 9,223 cases and 468 confirmed deaths as of Thursday. The Navajo Nation includes parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.
- The Arizona Department of Corrections said 1,458 inmates had tested positive for COVID-19 as of Thursday, including 747 in Tucson; 8,493 inmates have been tested out of a population of about 39,200. Seven incarcerated people have been confirmed to have died of COVID-19, with 14 additional deaths under investigation.
- While race/ethnicity is unknown for 46% of cases, 25% of cases are Hispanic or Latino, 18% of cases are white, 6% are Native American and 2% are Black.
- Laboratories have completed 1,015,218 diagnostic tests for COVID-19, 14.1% of which have come back positive. The percentage of positive tests increased since mid-May but appears to be decreasing. It was 11% for tests that have come back so far from last week, and 13% from the week prior.
Reported deaths: 4,137 known deaths
- On Saturday, 56 new deaths were reported, although many likely occurred on previous days or weeks.
- County deaths: 2,347 in Maricopa, 489 in Pima, 286 in Yuma, 199 in Navajo, 165 in Mohave, 156 in Pinal (The state on Friday listed 157), 139 in Apache, 117 in Coconino, 67 in Yavapai, 52 in Cochise, 53 in Santa Cruz, 38 in Gila, 15 in Graham, 12 in La Paz and fewer than three in Greenlee.
- People aged 65 and older made up 2,970 of the 4,137 deaths, or 72%.
- While race/ethnicity is unknown for 15% of deaths, 39% of those who died were white, 29% were Hispanic or Latino, 12% were Native American and 3% were Black.
Hospitalizations continue downward trends
- Inpatients with suspected and confirmed COVID-19 tallied 1,659 on Friday, continuing almost four weeks of a steady downward trend. Hospitalizations have eclipsed 1,000 daily since June 1 and surpassed 3,000 daily for much of July. Inpatient hospitalizations are gradually decreasing.
- ICU bed use for suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients was at 539 beds on Friday, down from 565 beds in use on Thursday. Wednesday was the first time since June 23 that ICU beds in use had been below 600. Occupied beds have seen gradual decreases over the past more than three weeks.
- Ventilator use for suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients was at 400 on Friday, down from 411 ventilators in use on Thursday and 427 ventilators in use on Wednesday. Ventilators in use have generally been declining for the past three weeks. A record high 687 ventilators in use was hit on July 16.
- Emergency department visits for patients with suspected and confirmed COVID-19 was at 1,121 on Friday. Generally, with a few exceptions, daily ER visits appear to be trending downward. Daily ER visits surpassed 1,000 on June 16 and have been above that level on every day but two since.
- The number of patients with suspected and confirmed positive COVID-19 discharged from hospitals was at 348 patients discharged on Friday. July saw relatively high discharge numbers.
Reach the reporter at [email protected] or 602-444-8529. Follow her on Twitter @brieannafrank.
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