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Fri, Jan. 28

7 dead, 189 infected as COVID surge continues in Mohave County

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KINGMAN – Mohave County continues to pay a heavy price for its reluctance to get vaccinated, as another seven residents succumbed to complications of COVID-19.

The new deaths were announced by the Mohave County Department of Public Health on Friday, Sept. 3 in a report that covered the two-day period between noon on Wednesday, Sept. 1 and noon on Friday.

It was also reported that 189 more county residents have been infected by the virus, which has killed more than 750 local residents since the beginning of the pandemic.

Only 42.1% of county residents eligible for the vaccine – ages 12 and under can’t receive it – have taken at least one shot of a COVID vaccine, which have proven to be effective in preventing severe illness and lessening the chance of contracting the virus. That places Mohave 10th among 15 Arizona counties, and is far below the 56.2% logged in the state and the 70%-plus recorded nationwide.

County health officials reported in a news release that “well over 90%” of cases requiring hospitalization in the county are among unvaccinated residents.

Kingman continues to get hammered in the most recent surge, attributed to the low vaccination and the presence of the more-contagious delta variant of the virus.

Five of the seven new deaths in the county were logged in the Kingman medical service area, including two patients in the 60-69 age range, and one each ages 50-59, 70-79 and 90-plus. The county’s press releases do not indicate if individuals who have either died or contracted the virus were vaccinated.

The other deaths were residents in the 70-79 age range, one each from the Lake Havasu City and Bullhead City service areas.

Local health officials also reported 189 new cases, as a surge in cases continues throughout the county.

A majority of the cases were recorded in the Kingman medical service area, with 82 new confirmed cases.

Many of the new local cases were logged in the age groups over 50 that have accounted for 96% of the coronavirus deaths in the county. There were 16 new local cases recorded in the 50-59 age range, along with 10 ages 60-69, three ages 70-79 and one age 90-plus.

Other Kingman-area cases included 17 ages 30-39, 14 ages 20-29, nine ages 11-19, seven ages 0-10 and five ages 40-49.

Elsewhere in the county, there were 66 new cases confirmed in the Bullhead City medical service area, 35 in the Lake Havasu City service area, four in the communities in the Arizona Strip, and two in undetermined areas of the county.

The county has been experiencing a surge in cases and deaths blamed on low vaccination rates and the delta coronavirus variant. There were 637 new cases and 11 deaths tabulated in the week ending at noon on Wednesday, Sept. 1. That compares to 613 cases and 12 deaths in the week ending at noon on Wednesday, Aug. 25; 663 cases and 15 deaths in the week ending Wednesday, Aug. 18; and 660 cases and 13 deaths in the week ending Wednesday, Aug. 11. Weekly cases were under 100 several months ago.

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, only 42.1% of eligible county residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. That compares to 56.3% statewide and more than 70% nationwide. More than one-third of county residents – 75,407 of about 213,000 – are fully vaccinated.

According to the county’s website, Bullhead City has suffered the most with 218 coronavirus deaths. It is followed by Kingman with 177, Lake Havasu City with 172, Fort Mohave with 71, Golden Valley with 40 and Mohave Valley with 26. 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 7,205 cases for Lake Havasu City, 6,356 for Bullhead City, 6,368 for Kingman, 2,211 for Fort Mohave, 1,380 for Golden Valley, 1,025 for Mohave Valley and 499 for Beaver Dam/Littlefield/Colorado City. There have also been 183 cases in Topock, 85 in Dolan Springs, 61 in Meadview and 55 in Yucca. The locations of the remaining cases are not specified.

The age of the average COVID-19 victim in the county is 73.7 years, while the age of the average patient is 45.8 years. 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 12.2% of Mohave County residents are known to have been infected.

County health officials have logged 26,127 coronavirus cases since the first local case was reported on March 24, 2020, while the Arizona Department of Health Services has recorded 28,871 cases in the county. The county counts 751 deaths, while the state reports 859. County health officials report that 22,829 county residents are known to have recovered from the disease since the beginning of the pandemic.

According to daily testing data from AZDHS for Friday, Sept. 3 there were 147 new cases from 854 tests in Mohave County for a positivity rate of 17%.

The positivity rate in the county was 16% (136/875) on Friday, Aug. 27; 22% (114/526) on Sunday, Aug. 29; and 27% (73/371) on Monday, Aug. 29; and 12% (147/1,233) on Wednesday, Sept. 1.

Since the beginning of the pandemic 250,414 tests have been conducted on county residents and 11.9% have been positive, according to AZDHS.

Statewide on Saturday, Sept. 4 AZDHS was reporting 38 new deaths and 3,424 new cases from 41,719 tests for a positivity rate of 8%. More than 1,027,000 Arizonans have contracted the virus and 18,997 have died.

Nationwide, Johns Hopkins University of Medicine was reporting nearly 40 million confirmed cases and 647,991 deaths the morning of Saturday, Sept. 4. More than 99% of recent deaths in the U.S. have involved unvaccinated individuals.

Globally, Johns Hopkins was reporting 4,558,608 deaths from more than 220 million confirmed cases on Saturday, Sept. 4.

A list of vaccine providers that receive vaccine from the county can be found at https://bit.ly/39gxPYJ. Kingman Regional Medical Center now accepts walk-ins for free vaccinations for persons ages 18 and older at its COVID Services office, located at the southeast corner of Stockton Hill Road and Detroit Avenue in Kingman. COVID Services is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. Children age 12-17 must make appointments and be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Vaccines for ages 12-17 are also available at Uptown Drug. Appointments are required.

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 service area includes Kingman, New-Kingman/Butler, Chloride, Valentine, Meadview, Wikieup, Yucca, White Hills, Hackberry, Peach Springs and Oatman.

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