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Sat, Dec. 04

COVID kills 7 more Kingman-area residents, including 2 in their 40s

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KINGMAN – The number of new cases of COVID-19 continues to decline, even as the virus continues to kill Mohave County residents at a high rate.

There were 397 new coronavirus cases recorded in the county in the five-day period between noon on Friday, Oct. 8 and noon on Wednesday, Oct. 13. Another 14 county residents were killed by COVID-19 during the same reporting period.

The report issued by the Mohave County Department of Public Health, which covered five days because the usual Monday report was not delivered due to the Columbus Day holiday, also revealed that 276 more county residents were infected with the potentially deadly virus in the five-day span, while there were 397 new cases and 17 deaths in the week ending Wednesday. That compares to 559 new cases and 15 deaths between noon on Wednesday, Sept. 23 and noon on Wednesday, Sept. 29.

Seven of the deaths were recorded in the Kingman medical service area, which has topped the county in the death count in recent months. Two of the newly deceased local residents were in the 40-49 age group. There were also two deaths in the 70-79 age bracket, and one each in the 50-59, 60-69 and 80-89 age groups.

An additional 88 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus were logged in the Kingman medical service area during the five-day reporting period, including 36 in the age groups over 50 that have accounted for 95% of the virus deaths in the county since the beginning of the pandemic. There were 16 cases ages 60-69, 15 ages 50-59, three ages 70-79 and two ages 80-89.

Also in the Kingman service area, there were 11 new cases recorded among children and teens, including eight ages 11-19 and three ages 0-10. There were also 17 cases ages 30-39, 16 ages 40-49 and eight ages 20-29.

Elsewhere in the county, the Bullhead City area suffered the most new cases of the county’s four medical service areas with 113, including 41 in the age groups over 50.

Another 63 cases were registered in the Lake Havasu City medical service area, while six new cases each were logged in the communities in the Arizona Strip and in undetermined locations in the county.

The county, in its news release on Wednesday, also reminded residents that even those fully vaccinated against the coronavirus can still contract COVID-19. “The vaccine reduces the severity of the virus and hospitalizations. It does not mean individuals are totally immune from COVID-19,” the county wrote.

The number of new cases has been declining in the county even as the weekly death toll remains tragically high.

The 493 cases and 19 deaths logged in the week ending Wednesday, Oct. 6 was down from 559 new cases and 15 deaths in the week ending Wednesday, Sept. 29, and 543 new cases and 21 deaths in the seven days ending Wednesday, Sept. 22. There were 619 new cases and 14 deaths in the county in the week ending at noon on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Still, Mohave County is considered a high-transmission area, and the county’s low vaccination rate has been cited by local health officials.

“Well over 90% of all those who are hospitalized were not vaccinated,” the county wrote in a news release on Oct. 6. “The Mohave County Health Department continues to urge all residents to get fully vaccinated.”

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, only 42.7% of eligible county residents have received at least one dose of 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 58.1% logged statewide. More than one-third of county residents – 82,527 of about 213,000 – are fully vaccinated.

According to the county’s website, Bullhead City has suffered the most with 229 coronavirus deaths. It is followed by Kingman with 209, Lake Havasu City with 182, Golden Valley with 42, Fort Mohave with 81 and Mohave Valley with 30. 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 7,704 cases for Lake Havasu City, 7,663 for Kingman, 7,030 for Bullhead City, 2,453 for Fort Mohave, 1,556 for Golden Valley, 1,133 for Mohave Valley and 537 for Beaver Dam/Littlefield/Colorado City. There have also been 208 cases in Topock, 98 in Dolan Springs, 73 in Meadview and 66 in Yucca. The locations of the remaining cases are not specified.

The age of the average COVID-19 victim in the county is 73 years, while the average patient is 45.2 years old. The case fatality rate in the county is 2.8%, meaning 28 of every 1,000 individuals who have contracted the virus have died. Approximately 13.7% of Mohave County residents are known to have been infected.

County health officials have logged 29,279 coronavirus cases since the first local case was reported on March 24, 2020, while the Arizona Department of Health Services has recorded 32,337 cases in the county. The county counts 831 deaths, while the state reports 956. County health officials report that 24,816 county residents are known to have recovered from the disease since the beginning of the pandemic.

According to daily testing data from AZDHS for Wednesday, Oct. 13 there were 95 new cases from 945 tests in Mohave County for a positivity rate of 10%.

The positivity rate was 9% (109/1,256) on Wednesday, Oct. 6; 13% (80/596) on Thursday, Oct. 7; 10% (55/563) on Friday, Oct. 8; 17% on Sunday, Oct. 10; 17% (61/358) on Monday, Oct. 11; and 20% (90/451) on Tuesday, Oct. 12.

Since the beginning of the pandemic 279,806 tests have been conducted on county residents and 12.2% have been positive, according to AZDHS.

Statewide on Thursday, Oct. 14 AZDHS was reporting six new deaths and 2,386 new cases from 30,512 tests for a positivity rate of 8%. More than 1,127,000 Arizonans have contracted the virus and 20,453 have died.

Nationwide, Johns Hopkins University of Medicine was reporting nearly 44.7 million confirmed cases and 719,760 deaths the morning of Thursday, Oct. 14.

Globally, Johns Hopkins was reporting nearly 4.9 million deaths from more than 239 million confirmed cases on Thursday, Oct. 14.

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.

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.

The county also passed along new federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations calling for persons who were inoculated with the Pfizer vaccine more than six months ago to get a booster shot if they meet one of the following criteria:

– Persons age 65 or older.

– Residents of long-term care facilities.

– Persons ages 18-64 with underlying health conditions.

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