COVID-19 claims lives of 23 Kingman-area residents
KINGMAN – COVID-19 claimed the lives of 39 Mohave County residents in the seven-day period ending at noon on Monday, Dec. 27. Twenty-three of the deaths were recorded in the Kingman medical service area, which continues to bear the brunt of the deaths in the county.
The new deaths, as well as 438 more cases of the coronavirus, were reported by the Mohave County Department of Public Health in a pair of news releases on Thursday, Dec. 23 and Monday, Dec. 27. It pushed the toll in the county, by local health officials’ calculations, to over 1,000 at 1,022.
Kingman continues to lead the county in COVID-19 cases as well as deaths, with 9,696 and 281, respectively.
Of the 23 deaths in the Kingman area, 15 were recorded in patients in their 40s through 60s, including 11 ages 60-69 and two each ages 40-49 and 50-59. There were also six deaths ages 70-79 and two ages 80-89.
Elsewhere in the county, eight deaths were logged in the Lake Havasu City service area, seven in the Bullhead City area, and one in the Arizona Strip.
Of the 438 new cases during the week, 96 were logged in the Kingman area, and nearly half were in the age groups over 50 that have accounted for 95% of the COVID-19 deaths in the county. There were 16 new local cases ages 50-59, eight ages 60-69, 12 ages 70-79 and three ages 80-89.
Another 12 cases were recorded in children and teens, including three ages 0-10 and nine ages 11-19. There were also 18 new local cases ages 20-29, 15 ages 40-49 and 12 ages 30-39.
The Bullhead City area suffered the most new cases of the county’s four medical service areas with 167. There were also 131 cases in the Lake Havasu City service area, 35 in the communities in the Arizona Strip and nine in undetermined locations in the county.
The 39 deaths and 438 new cases is actually a reduction from the prior week, when 49 deaths and 539 cases were recorded.
The number of new virus cases and deaths in the previous week ending at noon on Wednesday, Dec. 8. was 526 new cases and 22 additional deaths. That compares to 416 new cases and four deaths reported in the seven-day period ending at noon on Wednesday, Dec. 1, and 443 new cases and 21 deaths in the week ending Wednesday, Nov. 24.
Mohave County remains a high-transmission area, with the county’s low vaccination rate cited as a primary reason by local health officials.
According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, only 43.7% of eligible county residents have received a COVID-19 vaccine, which have proven effective at preventing the disease and lessening the severity of breakthrough illnesses. That places Mohave far below the 65% logged statewide. More than one-third of county residents – 76,640 of about 213,000 – are fully vaccinated.
According to the county’s website, Kingman has suffered the most with 281 coronavirus deaths. It is followed by Bullhead City with 269, Lake Havasu City with 211, Golden Valley with 63, Fort Mohave with 89 and Mohave Valley with 33. The locations of the remaining deaths are not specified by the county on its website.
Broken down by cities and communities, the county has recorded 9,696 cases in Kingman, 8,936 cases in Lake Havasu City, 8,114 in Bullhead City, 2,766 in Fort Mohave, 1,901 in Golden Valley, 1,266 in Mohave Valley and 645 in Beaver Dam/Littlefield/Colorado City. There have also been 238 cases in Topock, 203 in Dolan Springs, 99 in Meadview and 81 in Yucca. The locations of the remaining cases are not specified.
The age of the average COVID-19 victim in the county is 72.2 years, while the average patient is 45.4 years old. The case fatality rate in the county is 2.9%, meaning 29 of every 1,000 individuals who have contracted the virus have died. Approximately 16.2 % of Mohave County residents are known to have been infected.
County health officials have logged 34,803 coronavirus cases since the first local case was reported on March 24, 2020, while the Arizona Department of Health Services has recorded 38,576 cases in the county. The county counts 1,022 deaths, while the state reports 1,172.
According to county health officials, 29,142 county residents are known to have recovered from the disease since the beginning of the pandemic.
Daily testing data from AZDHS for Monday, Dec. 27 revealed 57 new cases from 199 tests for a positivity rate of 29%. The positivity rate was 32% (127/401) on Monday, Dec. 20; 13% (99/784) on Tuesday, Dec. 21; and 24% (71/295) on Sunday, Dec. 26.
Since the beginning of the pandemic 328,772 tests have been conducted on county residents and 12.5% have been positive, according to AZDHS.
Statewide on Tuesday, Dec. 28 AZDHS was reporting 162 additional deaths and 1,976 new cases from 12,434 tests for a positivity rate of 16%. More than 1,364,000 Arizonans have contracted the virus and 24,144 have died.
Nationwide, Johns Hopkins University of Medicine was reporting nearly 53 million confirmed cases and 818,388 deaths the morning of Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Globally, Johns Hopkins was reporting more than 5.4 million deaths from more than 281 million confirmed cases on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
The county noted that COVID-19 reports will only be issued on Mondays and Thursdays in the future, after the board of supervisors decided to reduce the frequency from daily, and then again from three per week down to twice a week.
Also, the news release reported that there have been no cases of the worrisome new omicron virus variant logged in the county. The health department is monitoring the situation.
County health officials also reported that they are “aware of the omicron variant and are monitoring the situation.” The coronavirus variant surfaced in southern Africa, and features dozens of new mutations which appear to be more transmittable than previous versions of the virus and could be more resistant to existing vaccines, although the verdict is still out. It has now spread to dozens of nations, and about 40 states in the U.S.
“We are expecting more specific information, clarity and guidance from the CDC (federal Centers for Disease Control and prevention soon. We will share it with the public when it’s made available,” the county wrote.
Vaccines are readily available at area pharmacies, physician offices and the Kingman Regional Medical Center COVID Services office at the corner of Stockton Hill Road and Detroit Avenue. Treatments for COVID19 are also now available.
Residents age 5 and up can now be vaccinated, and booster shots are recommended by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for all persons age 18 and older if it’s been six months since they received their second Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or two months since they’ve received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. The CDC is recommending that Americans be inoculated with the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines, due to the slim possibility that blood clotting could result from taking the J&J vaccine.
To curtail virus spread, public health officials recommend that the unvaccinated maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from others, wash their hands thoroughly and frequently, and wear a face covering when social distancing isn’t possible.
For some patients, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough, or no symptoms at all. For others, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. Some individuals with the virus, including those who have been fully vaccinated, can exhibit no symptoms, but are still capable of transmitting the disease.
The Kingman medical service area includes Kingman, New-Kingman/Butler, Chloride, Valentine, Meadview, Wikieup, Yucca, White Hills, Hackberry, Peach Springs, Valle Vista and Oatman.
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