Arizona reports over 3K more COVID cases for 3rd day in week
PHOENIX – The coronavirus outbreak continues to surge in Arizona, with the state reporting over 3,000 new known COVID-19 cases on Saturday for the third day in a week and the most in one day since July.
The state Department of Health Services reported 3,476 additional cases and 45 deaths, the most deaths reported in a single day in two weeks. The state's totals rose to 273,063 cases and 6,300 deaths.
As of Friday, 1,470 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus, the most since early August. The number of coronavirus patients in intensive care beds reached 362 on Friday, the most since late August.
Current coronavirus-related hospitalizations remain far below levels reached when Arizona was a national hot spot last summer. At the peak of the summer outbreak, they topped 3,500. Arizona's outbreak bottomed out in September but has steadily increased through October and into November.
State and health officials have said the recent increase is due to factors that include business and school re-openings and public fatigue with precautions such as masking.
Warning that conditions likely will get worse due to Thanksgiving family gatherings and other socializing, officials advise against congregating outside households that live together. They also continue to urge people to wear masks when in public, practice social distancing, wash hands frequently and stay home when sick.
The past two weeks saw seven-day rolling averages of daily new cases, daily deaths and positivity from COVID-19 testing continue to increase, according to analysis by The Associated Press of data from Johns Hopkins University and The COVID Tracking Project.
The average of daily new cases rose from 1,166 on Oct. 30 to 2,116 on Friday while the average of daily deaths doubled from 9.9 to 21.1 and the testing positivity average rose from 10.5% to 14.7%.
Testing positivity is a key metric of the degree of community spread of the virus.
The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.