ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona reports 2,970 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, most since February

Aug 12, 2021, 8:35 AM
Mobile Emergency Care Service (SAMU) doctor Yahya Niane puts on protective gear before helping Bint...

Mobile Emergency Care Service (SAMU) doctor Yahya Niane puts on protective gear before helping Binta Ba, who is eight months pregnant and has COVID-19, before transferring her to the hospital in Dakar, Senegal, Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021. Ambulance services in the West African nation of Senegal say about 90% of their calls right now are responding to COVID-19 patients with trouble breathing. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

(AP Photo/Leo Correa)

PHOENIX – Arizona health officials on Thursday reported 2,970 new COVID-19 cases, the most in a day in more than six months, and six additional deaths from the disease.

The last time the case update was larger was 4,381 on Feb. 9, about a month after the peak of Arizona’s winter wave.

The latest documented totals are 955,767 infections and 18,412 fatalities, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services COVID-19 dashboard.

Hospitalizations in the state related to COVID-19 have nearly tripled since the end of May, but deaths are down significantly from Arizona’s previous waves.

People who aren’t fully vaccinated now account for almost all of the serious illnesses and deaths.

The number of confirmed or suspected COVID-19 inpatients in the state’s hospitals increased by 14 overnight to 1,527 on Wednesday, the most since Feb. 21.

The number of ICU beds used by COVID-19 patients dipped by two to 383, the second-most since March 1.

The percentage of Arizona hospital beds used by COVID patients is currently about 20%. It peaked at around 60% in January, before vaccines were widely available.

The percent positivity for diagnostic testing conducted last week was at 14% as of Thursday’s update, matching the previous week, which was the highest since late January. The rate is at 13% so far for this week’s testing.

The dashboard also showed that 3,869,217 people (53.8% of the state’s population, based on 7,189,020 residents) have received at least one dose of vaccine in Arizona and 3,401,084 people are fully vaccinated (47.3% of the population). The nationwide rates are 59.1% with at least one dose and 50.3% fully vaccinated, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The state health department’s daily updates present case and death data after the state receives statistics and confirms them, which can lag by several days or more. They don’t represent the actual activity over the past 24 hours. The hospitalization numbers posted each morning are reported electronically the previous evening by hospitals across the state.

Free federally authorized vaccines are widely available and highly effective in preventing illness from COVID-19, including the more contagious delta variant that now accounts for most of the new cases in the U.S.

For details about statewide vaccine availability, the ADHS website has a vaccine-finder page with locations and other information.

For information about metro Phoenix vaccine availability, Maricopa County Public Health has a locator page that lists pharmacies, government-run sites, health clinics and pop-up distribution events.

Appointments may be required depending on the provider, but many accept walk-ins.

The minimum age to receive the Pfizer shot has been reduced to 12, but it’s still 18 for the other approved versions, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson.

COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, has no impact on some people and is seriously debilitating or fatal for others. Infected people without symptoms — which include but are not limited to cough, fever and difficulty breathing — are capable of spreading the virus.

Information about where to get tested for COVID-19 can be found on the ADHS website.

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