ASU Biodesign director: Vaccine hasn’t had effect on COVID numbers yet

Feb 4, 2021, 4:35 AM | Updated: 9:26 am
(AP Photo/Muhammad Sajjad)...
(AP Photo/Muhammad Sajjad)
(AP Photo/Muhammad Sajjad)

PHOENIX — The executive director for the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University doesn’t believe the coronavirus vaccine has had its effect on the state’s COVID numbers just yet.

“I think the numbers are probably more reflecting the fact that we’re kind of past the holidays, people are wearing their masks and keeping their distances,” Dr. Joshua LaBaer told Gaydos & Chad on Wednesday. “But it is definitely trending in the right direction.”

Arizona health officials on Wednesday reported 2,296 new coronavirus cases, the lowest daily case report since Dec. 27 and the third-lowest since November.

It also marked the first time since Nov. 16-17 that fewer than 3,000 cases were reported for two straight days.

LaBaer iterated that the new models “are not in any way” reflective of any variant coronavirus strains.

“Arizona State University recently detected a few cases of the U.K. strain, but we’re not seeing a lot of that yet — at least not that we can observe,” he said.

“So I think for now we’re hoping that things continue in the right direction and as the summer comes and as we get more and more people vaccinated, that will definitely help us for sure.”

LaBaer added that it’s hard to say whether or not another wave similar to or even worse than last summer or this winter is coming.

“We’re a little bit in a race between the potential new variants coming here and getting people vaccinated,” he said. “I’m hoping that we can get people vaccinated to beat the new variants.”

On Wednesday, all 21,000 of the available appointments for vaccines at Phoenix Municipal Stadium were snapped up in 39 minutes.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Arizona Commerce Authority Photo)...

Aviation facility in Goodyear welcomes first class of aspiring pilots Monday

A new aviation training facility in the West Valley will welcome its first class of aspiring pilots Monday, the Arizona Commerce Authority announced.
7 hours ago
FILE - In this July 16, 2019, file photo, officers taking part in training load gun clips with ammu...

Phoenix man sentenced to over 3 years in prison for ammunition smuggle attempt

A Valley man was sentenced to over three years in prison on Wednesday for attempting to smuggle ammunition from the United States into Mexico last year, authorities said.
7 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...

Southbound SR 87 lanes reopened after crash east of Shea Boulevard

The southbound lanes have reopened on State Route 87 near the Fort McDowell Rodeo Grounds following a crash.
1 day ago
(Facebook photo/ Buckeye Police Department)...

Police arrest suspect after deadly shooting in Buckeye

Police arrested a suspect without incident after a fatal shooting near Yuma and Dean Roads in Buckeye Friday evening.
1 day ago
(Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team Photo)...

Officers seize over 100 pounds of cocaine at Arizona-California border

Arizona Department of Transportation Enforcement and Compliance Division officers seized over 100 pounds of cocaine on Tuesday at a port of entry near the California state line, authorities said. 
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...

Scottsdale man accused of stealing millions in music royalties

A Scottsdale man is one of two people accused of stealing millions of dollars in music royalties over the past five years, authorities said Wednesday.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Arizona State University

Gain insights on next year’s trends at 58th Annual Economic Forecast Luncheon

Employment is recovering from the severe contraction induced by the pandemic, but it is still way below levels at the start of 2020. Can it fully recover in the coming year?
Sanderson Ford

Sanderson Ford offers cars and deals for all this holiday season

Sanderson Ford’s No! Vember Black Friday sale is giving an opportunity to purchase a new 2021 vehicle just in time for the holiday season.

How your family can explore the Musical Instrument Museum

Whether you want to spend a day with family, do crafts with kids at home, or have an adult night out, the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix has options. As the world’s only global musical instrument museum, MIM offers interactive and immersive exhibits to foster an appreciation of different cultures and their instruments. “A visit […]
ASU Biodesign director: Vaccine hasn’t had effect on COVID numbers yet