Arizona COVID-19 updates: State adds 7,720 cases and 17 new deaths

·97 min read

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 7,720 to a total of 1,381,488 on Friday, and 17 new deaths were reported.

The total count of known deaths as of Friday was 24,229. The state's pandemic death rate is one of the highest in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Arizona's seven-day death rate per 100,000 people ranked seventh among states and territories as of Friday, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Here's the latest:

Follow coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic by Republic and USA TODAY Network reporters here.

9 a.m. Dec. 31: State adds 7,720 cases and 17 new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 7,720 to a total of 1,381,488 on Friday, and 17 new deaths were reported.

The total count of known deaths as of Friday was 24,229. The state's pandemic death rate is one of the highest in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Deaths by county as of Friday: 13,675 in Maricopa; 3,154 in Pima; 1,308 in Pinal; 1,178 in Mohave; 982 in Yuma; 956 in Yavapai; 746 in Navajo; 542 in Apache; 466 in Cochise; 416 in Coconino; 308 in Gila; 206 in Santa Cruz; 157 in Graham; 108 in La Paz; and 27 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked seventh in the nation out of all states and territories as of Friday, behind the Northern Mariana Islands, New Mexico, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and Oklahoma after ranking first and second last week, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 870,996 in Maricopa; 173,038 in Pima; 89,280 in Pinal; 44,378 in Yuma; 39,143 in Mohave; 36,447 in Yavapai; 28,085 in Coconino; 26,994 in Navajo; 20,079 in Cochise; 16,261 in Apache; 12,198 in Gila; 10,476 in Santa Cruz; 8,971 in Graham; 3,652 in La Paz; and 1,489 in Greenlee, according to state numbers.

On Thursday, 2,303 patients were hospitalized across Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19, and just 108 ICU beds were available across the state. While the level of patients remained relatively high in hospitals this week, the numbers were down slightly from last week, state data shows.

The state reported more than 4.6 million people in Arizona — about 65.4% of the total state population — had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, with more than 3.9 million residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

Arizona's rate of fully vaccinated people out of the total population is 57%, which is behind the national rate of 62%, according to the CDC as of Thursday.

Out of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 60.6% of those in Arizona are fully vaccinated, compared with 65.9% at the national level, CDC data shows.

Health experts strongly recommend booster shots, especially with the omicron variant spreading. About 32.6% of fully vaccinated Arizonans over the age of 18 had received a booster shot as of Thursday, slightly below the national rate of 36.3% for that same age group. The CDC recommends booster doses for fully vaccinated individuals ages 16 and older as long as it's six months or more after they became fully vaccinated.

-BrieAnna J. Frank

2:30 p.m. Dec. 30: Arizona panel will consider Paxlovid prioritization Jan. 7

Arizona's Vaccine and Antiviral Prioritization Advisory Committee is scheduled to make a recommendation about how to prioritize Pfizer's Paxlovid pill for COVID-19 symptoms on Jan. 7.

Since the oral antiviral medication is in short supply, its use must be prioritized, said Jessica Rigler, assistant director for the division of public health preparedness at the Arizona Department of Health Services.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Dec. 22 granted an Emergency Use Authorization for Paxlovid for outpatient treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19. It can be prescribed to those 12 and older who weigh at least 88 pounds.

Paxlovid, the first oral antiviral that has received a federal emergency authorization, has shown effectiveness in preventing the progression of illness in people who have tested positive for COVID-19.

But since only about 1,100 doses were expected to arrive in Arizona this week, the state's preliminary recommendation is that the Paxlovid go to COVID-19 positive patients ages 70 and older with severe underlying health conditions or immunocompromising conditions.

"There's such a short supply of the drug that we wanted to make sure that there was some guidance out there for health care providers for consideration with prescribing before the committee had a chance to meet and finalize recommendations," Rigler said in an interview Thursday.

"The timeline on the antivirals shifted a little bit from when we expected to receive them. They actually came earlier, and so we put out something — immediate guidance, basically, so that it wasn't providers prescribing to just anyone given limited supply."

VAPAC, the state vaccine and antiviral advisory committee, which includes county, state and tribal public health leaders, among others, is expected to formalize that recommendation at next week's meeting.

The state health department will decide whether or not to adopt VAPAC's recommendations; but even if it does adopt them, the prescribing parameters for Pavloxid would remain guidance only, Rigler said.

"We hope that prescribers act in good faith, to be good stewards of the limited supply. But there are special circumstances," where prescribers may think certain patients outside the guidance need the medication, Rigler said.

The availability of Paxlovid to COVID-19 positive patients outside the over-70, high-risk group could expand as supply increases, Rigler said.

"We saw it happen early on in the (COVID-19) vaccine rollout where it was significantly restricted ... Then as more supply became available in the state the prioritization criteria expanded," Rigler said. "It's solely based on supply ... We're really looking at those who are most vulnerable to severe outcomes from disease."

Patients who receive Paxlovid will need to have a conversation with their health provider, as the drug could cause significant adverse effects due to interactions with other medications, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration wrote when it authorized the drug for emergency use last week.

— Stephanie Innes

12:30 p.m. Dec. 30: FDA reportedly close to authorizing third Pfizer shot for kids 12-15

The Food and Drug Administration is reportedly poised to authorize a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for kids ages 12-15.

Regulators also plan to allow adolescents and adults to get the third shots five months after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer’s vaccine instead of the current six months, The New York Times reported, citing sources it described as familiar with the agency's deliberations. A third shot, often referred to as a booster, is also expected to be authorized for children as young as 5 with immune deficiencies.

The third dose authorization is expected "in coming days," CNN reported, citing a source CNN said was familiar with the plan. The Times said the authorization is expected Monday.

"As the booster is already authorized for 16 and over, we are confident regulators are making every effort to look for ways to preserve a high level of protection against the virus across broad populations," Pfizer said in an email to USA TODAY.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine advisory committee is expected to meet next week to vote on whether to recommend the changes, the Times said. If the panel agrees, CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky is expected to sign off immediately.

A third shot could help ease the health threat faced by millions of middle school and high school students returning to classrooms next week after the holiday break. During that break an omicron-fueled surge has driven reported daily infections across the nation to record levels.

— Celina Tebor, Jeanine Santucci and John Bacon, USA Today

10 a.m. Dec. 30: State adds 5,687 cases and 41 new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 5,687 to a total of 1,373,767 on Thursday, and 41 new deaths were reported.

The total count of known deaths as of Thursday was 24,212. The state's pandemic death rate is one of the highest in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Deaths by county as of Thursday: 13,670 in Maricopa; 3,153 in Pima; 1,306 in Pinal; 1,176 in Mohave; 982 in Yuma; 951 in Yavapai; 745 in Navajo; 542 in Apache; 466 in Cochise; 416 in Coconino; 308 in Gila; 206 in Santa Cruz; 157 in Graham; 107 in La Paz; and 27 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked fourth in the nation out of all states and territories as of Wednesday, behind only the Northern Mariana Islands, New Mexico and Tennessee, after ranking first and second last week, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: Cases by county: 866,014 in Maricopa; 172,153 in Pima; 88,597 in Pinal; 44,260 in Yuma; 38,967 in Mohave; 36,284 in Yavapai; 27,717 in Coconino; 26,905 in Navajo; 19,985 in Cochise; 16,196 in Apache; 12,172 in Gila; 10,441 in Santa Cruz; 8,955 in Graham; 3,638 in La Paz; and 1,483 in Greenlee, according to state numbers.

On Wednesday, 2,323 patients were hospitalized across Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19, and just 110 ICU beds were available across the state. While the level of patients remained relatively high in hospitals this week, the numbers were down slightly from last week, state data shows.

The state reported more than 4.6 million people in Arizona — about 65.2% of the total state population — had received at least one vaccine dose as of Thursday, with more than 3.9 million residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

Arizona's rate of fully vaccinated people out of the total population is 56.9%, which is behind the national rate of 61.9%, according to the CDC as of Wednesday.

Out of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 60.5% of those in Arizona are fully vaccinated, compared with 65.9% at the national level, CDC data shows.

Health experts strongly recommend booster shots, especially with the omicron variant spreading. About 32% of fully vaccinated Arizonans over the age of 18 had received a booster shot as of Wednesday, slightly below the national rate of 35.9% for that same age group. The CDC recommends booster doses for fully vaccinated individuals ages 16 and older as long as it's six months or more after they became fully vaccinated.

-Stephanie Innes

8 a.m. Dec. 30: Officials defend new isolation rules after testing positive

Federal officials are defending the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's decision to cut the amount of recommended time people should isolate after testing positive for the coronavirus.

The CDC announced its recommendation to reduce the number of isolation days from 10 to five Monday. Some have rejoiced in the shortened isolation period, while others have criticized the decision, arguing the CDC turned its back on science and bowed to business interests.

The announcement came days after Delta Airline's CEO publicly asked the CDC for a shorter isolation period, and in the midst of thousands of canceled flights, which airlines have blamed on staffing shortages because of the latest surge in coronavirus infections.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said the new recommendation is backed by science on CNN on Wednesday. The most amount of COVID-19 transmission happens in the one or two days prior to developing symptoms and in the two to three days after developing symptoms, Walensky said – totaling five days.

The decision is backed by behavioral science, too, she said.

“It really had a lot to do with what we thought people would be able to tolerate,” Walensky told CNN's Kaitlan Collins.

A USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows recorded U.S. COVID cases this month are already the third-highest of the entire pandemic, and Walensky said she expects even more cases of the highly contagious omicron variant.

The rapidly rising cases contributed to the CDC's decision to shorter the isolation period: Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said forcing everyone who tests positive for COVID-19 to isolate for 10 days could lead to much more dangerous consequences.

“The alternative is something that no one wants: and that’s to shut down completely," he told Chris Hayes on MSNBC. "And we know that’s not going to be palatable to the American public.”

Professional associations have pushed back on the new guidelines, saying they'll be harmful to workers. The American Nurses Association urged the CDC to reconsider its decision, saying it was premature.

— Celina Tebor, Jeanine Santucci and John Bacon, USA Today

10:15 a.m. Dec. 29: Hospitalizations up for kids, but omicron may not be more severe

More kids are being hospitalized with the coronavirus, but some experts say the omicron variant does not appear to be more severe in kids than previous strands. Instead, they blame the explosion in all cases and the delay in vaccination for young people since vaccines for them were released well after adults began getting jabs.

The Policylab at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia reported in a blog post last week that nationwide there were 1.1 overall hospitalizations per 100,000 children – low compared to a typical flu season that can reach three to five patients per 100,000 children. Only Ohio and Missouri had a pediatric census exceeding three patients per 100,000 children, the Policylab reported.

The blog post added that the numbers will need to be closely monitored given omicron's surge and an uptick in hospitalization numbers in all regions except the West.

“The important story to tell here is that severity is way down and the risk for significant severe disease seems to be lower,” Dr. David Rubin, a researcher at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, told The New York Times.

— John Baconand Celina Tebor, USA Today

9:45 a.m. Dec. 29: State adds 3,411 cases and 27 new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 3,411 to a total of 1,368,080 on Wednesday, and 27 new deaths were reported.

Arizona this week surpassed 24,000 deaths and the total count as of Wednesday was 24,171. The state's pandemic death rate is one of the highest in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The state has reported death totals for these counties: 13,641 in Maricopa; 3,151 in Pima; 1,305 in Pinal; 982 in Yuma; 948 in Yavapai; 416 in Coconino; 744 in Navajo; 465 in Cochise; 541 in Apache; 308 in Gila; 206 in Santa Cruz; 157 in Graham; 107 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee counties, according to data collected by the state.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked third in the nation out of all states and territories as of Tuesday, behind the Northern Mariana Islands and New Mexico, according to the CDC. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation as of Tuesday, behind New York City, Mississippi and Alabama.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 862,457 in Maricopa; 171,383 in Pima; 88,354 in Pinal; 44,176 in Yuma; 36,081 in Yavapai; 27,568 in Coconino; 26,761 in Navajo; 19,909 in Cochise; 16,127 in Apache; 12,126 in Gila; 10,385 in Santa Cruz; 8,943 in Graham; 3,618 in La Paz; 1,476 in Greenlee.

Hospitalization levels in Arizona remained relatively high on Tuesday, with just 7% or 119 adult intensive care unit beds unoccupied statewide. COVID-19 patients occupied 37% of ICU beds on Monday, the data shows.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 65.1% of the total population.

Of the eligible population ages 5 and older, 60.4% of Arizonans were fully vaccinated as of Tuesday, which trails the U.S. rate of 65.7%, per the CDC.

Fully vaccinated is defined as two vaccine doses of a two-dose series or one dose of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. However, federal and state health officials say that fully vaccinated individuals should get a booster dose of vaccine in order to have the best protection against infection, severe illness and death from COVID-19.

-Stephanie Innes

10:45 a.m. Dec. 28: Omicron may pose small threat to vaccinated, experts say

Two pieces of good news about omicron to take into the new year: It may not be around for long, and people who are fully vaccinated don't need to worry, as long as they have a healthy immune system.

Because omicron is so incredibly contagious, medical experts say its peak isn't likely to last long.

It's already burned through South Africa since it was first identified the day before Thanksgiving and cases are falling there. In the week ending Dec. 26, the number of newly diagnosed had dropped nearly 36% from their peak a week earlier, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Johns Hopkins University data.

If the northeast, which has been battered by COVID-19's omicron variant over the past two weeks, follows the same pattern, it could see falling case rates as soon as mid-January, though since the U.S. is so large, it's likely to take time to move across the country, experts say.

The news is even better for people with the vaccine. Although two shots are not as protective against omicron as they were against previous variants, vaccination and boosting seem to make a big difference in people with a healthy immune system.

— Karen Weintraub, USA Today

9 a.m. Dec. 28: Arizona adds 1,976 new cases, 162 new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 1,976 to a total of 1,364,669 on Tuesday, and 162 new deaths were reported.

COVID-19 death numbers are often higher on Tuesdays due to weekend reporting delays.

The state has reported death totals for these counties: 13,629 in Maricopa; 3,150 in Pima; 1,301 in Pinal; 979 in Yuma; 945 in Yavapai; 416 in Coconino; 743 in Navajo; 464 in Cochise; 541 in Apache; 308 in Gila; 206 in Santa Cruz; 156 in Graham; 107 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee counties, according to data collected by the state.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Monday, behind New Mexico, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation as of Monday, behind New York City, Mississippi and Alabama.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 860,428 in Maricopa; 170,831 in Pima; 88,173 in Pinal; 44,127 in Yuma; 35,946 in Yavapai; 27,472 in Coconino; 26,690 in Navajo; 19,881 in Cochise; 16,090 in Apache; 12,074 in Gila; 10,369 in Santa Cruz; 8,939 in Graham; 3,608 in La Paz; 1,465 in Greenlee.

Hospitalization levels remained relatively high on Monday, with just 7% or 114 adult intensive care unit beds unoccupied statewide. COVID-19 patients occupied 37% of ICU beds on Monday, the data shows.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 65% of the total population.

Of the eligible population ages 5 and older, 60.4% of Arizonans were fully vaccinated as of Monday, which trails the U.S. rate of 65.7%, per the CDC.

Fully vaccinated is defined as two vaccine doses of a two-dose series or one dose of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. However, federal and state health officials say that fully vaccinated individuals should get a booster dose of vaccine in order to have the best protection against infection, severe illness and death from COVID-19.

- Stephanie Innes

6:50 p.m. Dec. 27: Arizona Bowl canceled over COVID-19 concerns

Barstool Sports announced the cancellation of Friday's Arizona Bowl in Tucson on Monday following Boise State's withdrawal from the game after multiple players tested positive for COVID-19.

Monday began with hopes the annual college football event at Tucson's Arizona Stadium would go on as planned with a game between the Boise State Broncos and Central Michigan Chippewas.

CMU players flew in on Sunday. The Broncos were set to arrive in Tucson on Tuesday. But the team later put out a bulletin saying it would withdraw from the bowl and had canceled team activities because the number of student-athletes who had tested positive exceeded the level that "that would allow for safe travel and safety of players."

Barstool Sports, which was to sponsor the 7-year-old event for the first time this year, announced on Twitter just after 6 p.m. that it would cancel the event.

"Due to a COVID spike within a participating athletic program, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the 2021 Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl," the media company wrote, thanking its partners and vowing to bring the bowl back in 2022.

Athletic officials were in discussions about whether to pick CMU to play against Washington State in the Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl in El Paso, also scheduled for Friday. The Miami Hurricanes, which were supposed to play against Washington, announced the team was dropping out of the Sun Bowl due to its players testing positive for COVID-19.

— Ray Stern

5 p.m. Dec. 27: CDC cuts isolation time for Americans who test positive from 10 days to 5

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Monday cut the amount of time it recommends people should isolate after testing positive for COVID-19, reducing the number of days from 10 to five.

Health officials similarly reduced the amount of time one should quarantine after coming into contact with someone who tests positive.

The changes come amid a recent surge in cases spurred by the omicron variant and concerns about staffing shortages at hospitals, airlines and businesses across the country. Research has suggested omicron, while more infectious, causes milder illness. CDC officials say the new guidance is in keeping with growing evidence that people with the coronavirus are most infectious in the two days before and three days after symptoms develop.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said the country is about to see a lot of omicron cases.

“Not all of those cases are going to be severe. In fact many are going to be asymptomatic,” she said Monday. “We want to make sure there is a mechanism by which we can safely continue to keep society functioning while following the science.”

Last week, the agency loosened rules that previously called on health care workers to stay out of work for 10 days if they test positive. The new recommendations said workers could go back to work after seven days if they test negative and don’t have symptoms. And the agency said isolation time could be cut to five days, or even fewer, if there are severe staffing shortages.

Isolation recommendations are for those who are infected with COVID and start on the day a person tests positive. The agency recommends isolating for five days and going back to normal activities if a person is not showing any symptoms after that period.

Quarantines are defined differently as the term refers to those who are in close contact with someone who tests positive. The CDC previously recommended unvaccinated individuals who come into close contact with someone who tested positive should quarantine for 10 days. The agency previously said those who were vaccinated could skip a quarantine.

The CDC is now recommending those who are vaccinated and received a booster shot can skip quarantining if they wear a face mask for at least 10 days. If a person is vaccinated and has not gotten a booster, or if they are partly vaccinated or not vaccinated at all, the CDC recommends a five-day quarantine, then wearing a mask in public for an additional five days.

— John Bacon, Celina Tebor and Christal Hayes, USA TODAY

9:30 a.m. Dec. 27: State adds 7,641 new cases, no new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 7,641 to a total of 1,362,693 on Monday and no new deaths were reported.

The number of new cases added was expected to be higher today and for a few additional days due to reporting delays over Christmas, interim state health director Don Herrington wrote in a Sunday blog post. No data on cases were processed on Christmas Day.

The state has reported death totals for these counties: 13,552 in Maricopa; 3,121 in Pima; 1,294 in Pinal; 969 in Yuma; 936 in Yavapai; 412 in Coconino; 737 in Navajo; 459 in Cochise; 540 in Apache; 303 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 156 in Graham; 107 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee counties, according to data collected by the state.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Thursday, behind New Mexico, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation as of Thursday, behind New York City, Mississippi and Alabama.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 859,062 in Maricopa; 170,703 in Pima; 87,931 in Pinal; 44,105 in Yuma; 35,891 in Yavapai; 27,453 in Coconino; 26,655 in Navajo; 19,869 in Cochise; 16,070 in Apache; 12,075 in Gila; 10,359 in Santa Cruz; 8,936 in Graham; 3,603 in La Paz; 1,462 in Greenlee.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 64.9% of the total population.

Of the eligible population ages 5 and older, 60.2% of Arizonans were fully vaccinated, which trails the U.S. rate of 65.6%, per the CDC.

Fully vaccinated is defined as two vaccine doses of a two-dose series or one dose of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. However, federal and state health officials say that fully vaccinated individuals should get a booster dose of vaccine in order to have the best protection against infection, severe illness and death from COVID-19.

— Stephanie Innes

10:30 a.m. Dec. 26: State adds 344 new cases, no new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 344 to a total of 1,355,052 cases on Sunday. The state reported no new known deaths bringing the number of deaths to 23,982, according to data released by the state.

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services dashboard, the reported numbers were lower Sunday because of the holiday, and cases for those days will be added in the coming days as a result.

The state has reported death totals for these counties: 13,552 in Maricopa; 3,121 in Pima; 1,294 in Pinal; 969 in Yuma; 936 in Yavapai; 412 in Coconino; 737 in Navajo; 459 in Cochise; 540 in Apache; 303 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 156 in Graham; 107 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee counties, according to data collected by the state.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Thursday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 853,298 in Maricopa; 169,972 in Pima; 87,705 in Pinal; 44,013 in Yuma; 35,761 in Yavapai; 27,131 in Coconino; 26,532 in Navajo; 19,788 in Cochise; 16,035 in Apache; 12,052 in Gila; 10,331 in Santa Cruz; 8,930 in Graham; 3,600 in La Paz; 1,456 in Greenlee.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 64.9% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

— Steven Hernandez

2:15 p.m. Dec. 25: State adds 3,495 new cases, 70 new deaths

COVID-19 cases in Arizona increased by 3,495 to a total of 1,354,708 cases on Saturday. The state reported 70 new known deaths bringing the number of deaths to 23,983, according to data released by the state.

The state has reported death totals for these counties: 13,552 in Maricopa; 3,121 in Pima; 1,294 in Pinal; 970 in Yuma; 936 in Yavapai; 412 in Coconino; 737 in Navajo; 459 in Cochise; 540 in Apache; 303 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 107 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee counties, according to data collected by the state.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Thursday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals for these counties: 853,296 in Maricopa; 169,972 in Pima; 87,501 in Pinal; 43,992 in Yuma; 35,761 in Yavapai; 27,131 in Coconino; 26,532 in Navajo; 19,788 in Cochise; 16,035 in Apache; 12,033 in Gila; 10,331 in Santa Cruz; 8,929 in Graham; 3,599 in La Paz; 1,456 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4%-5%, before rising over the course of July and again in October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 19. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 64.8% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.7% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 61.7%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 60.2% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Thursday, lower than the national rate of 65.6%.

— Amaris Encinas

9 a.m. Dec. 24: State adds 3,808 new cases, 72 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,808 to a total of 1,351,213 on Friday. The state reported 72 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,913, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,519 in Maricopa; 3,112 in Pima; 1,289 in Pinal; 1,156 in Mohave; 966 in Yuma; 934 in Yavapai; 736 in Navajo; 540 in Apache; 456 in Cochise; 411 in Coconino; 301 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 156 in Graham; 106 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Thursday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 850,653 in Maricopa; 169,560 in Pima; 87,384 in Pinal; 43,938 in Yuma; 38,329 in Mohave; 35,719 in Yavapai; 27,108 in Coconino; 26,499 in Navajo; 19,746 in Cochise; 16,012 in Apache; 11,982 in Gila; 10,319 in Santa Cruz; 8,923 in Graham; 3,595 in La Paz and 1,446 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4%-5%, before rising over the course of July and again in October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 19. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,440 on Thursday. Just 93 intensive care unit beds, representing 6% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Thursday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 64.8% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.7% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 61.7%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 60.2% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Thursday, lower than the national rate of 65.6%.

— BrieAnna J. Frank

9:30 a.m. Dec. 23: State adds 3,222 new cases, 25 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,222 to a total of 1,347,405 on Thursday. The state reported 25 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,841, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,492 in Maricopa; 3,099 in Pima; 1,282 in Pinal; 1,151 in Mohave; 965 in Yuma; 929 in Yavapai; 735 in Navajo; 537 in Apache; 454 in Cochise; 408 in Coconino; 300 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 153 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked second in the nation out of all states and territories as of Wednesday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 848,132 in Maricopa; 169,140 in Pima; 87,172 in Pinal; 43,873 in Yuma; 38,229 in Mohave; 35,647 in Yavapai; 26,958 in Coconino; 26,430 in Navajo; 19,676 in Cochise; 15,971 in Apache; 11,924 in Gila; 10,310 in Santa Cruz; 8,912 in Graham; 3,585 in La Paz and 1,446 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 19. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,451 on Wednesday. Just 94 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 6% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Wednesday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Thursday, which represents about 64.7% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.6% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Wednesday, which is below the national rate of 61.7%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 60.1% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 65.6%.

— Alison Steinbach

11 a.m. Dec. 22: FDA authorizes a Pfizer pill people can take at home

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday authorized the use of a new antiviral pill that can be taken at home to help prevent people sick with COVID-19 from becoming severely ill.

Paxlovid, made by Pfizer, reduced the risk of severe disease by nearly 90% in clinical trials and appeared to be safe. Taken as a pill soon after COVID-19 symptoms start, it is intended for people at high risk for severe disease, including those over 65, people with obesity or diabetes and anyone with a weakened immune system, as well as high-risk children ages 12 and up.

The pill is easier to deliver than previous treatments, which had to be given by injection or infusion, but requires a prescription and swallowing 40 pills over 5 days. The drug works best when given within 5 days of symptom onset and not well at all after 7 days, studies show. Some hospitals and pharmacies are working to reduce the time between a positive test, receipt of a prescription and access to the pills.

“Pfizer stands ready to begin delivery in the U.S. immediately to help get PAXLOVID into the hands of appropriate patients as quickly as possible,” Pfizer chairman and CEO Albert Bourla said in a prepared statement.

The U.S. government has pre-purchased doses to provide at no cost, but it's not clear how quickly it can be made widely available.

The antiviral became more important in recent days as the omicron variant took over from delta. The two most used monoclonal antibodies, which also help prevent people from becoming severely ill, are not expected to be effective against omicron, though a third, sotrovimab from GlaxoSmithKline and Vir Biotechnology continues to be useful.

— Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY

9 a.m. Dec. 22: State adds 2,806 new cases, 74 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,806 to a total of 1,344,183 on Wednesday. The state reported 74 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,816, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,482 in Maricopa; 3,098 in Pima; 1,278 in Pinal; 1,143 in Mohave; 964 in Yuma; 929 in Yavapai; 735 in Navajo; 537 in Apache; 454 in Cochise; 407 in Coconino; 300 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 153 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 27 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked first in the nation out of all states and territories as of Tuesday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 846,298 in Maricopa; 168,752 in Pima; 86,770 in Pinal; 43,746 in Yuma; 38,145 in Mohave; 35,540 in Yavapai; 26,862 in Coconino; 26,354 in Navajo; 19,644 in Cochise; 15,946 in Apache; 11,918 in Gila; 10,293 in Santa Cruz; 8,894 in Graham; 3,577 in La Paz and 1,444 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. It’s at 11% so far for the week of Dec. 19. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,490 on Tuesday. Just 102 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 6% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Tuesday. More than four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Wednesday, which represents about 64.5% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.5% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Tuesday, which is below the national rate of 61.6%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 60.1% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Tuesday, lower than the national rate of 65.5%.

— Alison Steinbach

10 a.m. Dec. 21: State adds 2,395 new cases, 223 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,395 to a total of 1,341,377 on Tuesday. The state reported 223 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,742, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,457 in Maricopa; 3,094 in Pima; 1,273 in Pinal; 1,133 in Mohave; 962 in Yuma; 918 in Yavapai; 733 in Navajo; 536 in Apache; 448 in Cochise; 405 in Coconino; 298 in Gila; 204 in Santa Cruz; 150 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 26 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked first in the nation out of all states and territories as of Monday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 844,498 in Maricopa; 168,481 in Pima; 86,472 in Pinal; 43,718 in Yuma; 38,046 in Mohave; 35,470 in Yavapai; 26,808 in Coconino; 26,309 in Navajo; 19,599 in Cochise; 15,924 in Apache; 11,886 in Gila; 10,288 in Santa Cruz; 8,871 in Graham; 3,566 in La Paz and 1,441 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,539 on Monday. Just 79 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Sunday. More than four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Tuesday, which represents about 64.4% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.5% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Monday, which is below the national rate of 61.5%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 60% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Monday, lower than the national rate of 65.4%.

— Alison Steinbach

7:30 a.m. Dec. 21: Emergency response team to be sent to Arizona

President Joe Biden is expected to announce Tuesday the purchase of a half-billion, at-home rapid COVID-19 tests and the mobilization of 1,000 military medical personnel to overburdened hospitals in an effort to confront surging COVID-19 infections and the new, highly-transmissible omicron variant.

Building on the winter strategy he outlined earlier this month, Biden wants to ramp up the supply of rapid tests, as shortages have led to long lines and overwhelmed hospitals in hot spots as Americans crisscross the country for the holiday season.

The president will announce plans to send six emergency response teams to Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Arizona, New Hampshire and Vermont and will stand up new federal testing sites with the first location in New York City this week, the official told reporters on condition of anonymity in order to discuss details of Biden’s speech.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, Biden’s top coronavirus adviser, said the president will be emphasizing and upscaling some existing policies and detailing new steps.

That includes the ongoing push to get people vaccinated, making testing more available, sending surge response teams to states with rising rates, providing vaccines to the rest of the world and making travel safer.

— Maureen Groppeand Courtney Subramanian, USA Today

10 a.m. Dec. 20: State adds 2,176 new cases, no new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,176 to a total of 1,338,982 on Monday. The state reported no new known deaths, keeping the death total at 23,519, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,343 in Maricopa; 3,052 in Pima; 1,259 in Pinal; 1,125 in Mohave; 954 in Yuma; 908 in Yavapai; 725 in Navajo; 534 in Apache; 440 in Cochise; 404 in Coconino; 294 in Gila; 203 in Santa Cruz; 149 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 24 in Greenlee.

Arizona's seven-day COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people ranked first in the nation out of all states and territories as of Sunday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arizona’s COVID-19 death rate per 100,000 people since the pandemic began ranked fourth in the nation.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 842,993 in Maricopa; 168,138 in Pima; 86,345 in Pinal; 43,694 in Yuma; 37,919 in Mohave; 35,384 in Yavapai; 26,750 in Coconino; 26,248 in Navajo; 19,564 in Cochise; 15,922 in Apache; 11,879 in Gila; 10,270 in Santa Cruz; 8,867 in Graham; 3,566 in La Paz and 1,443 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28, 11% for the week of Dec. 5 and 11% for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,496 on Sunday. Just 90 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Sunday. About four in ten ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Monday, which represents about 64.3% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.4% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Sunday, which is below the national rate of 61.4%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 60% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Sunday, lower than the national rate of 65.3%.

— Alison Steinbach

1 p.m. Dec. 19: State adds 2,745 new cases, 3 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,745 to a total of 1,336,806 on Sunday. The state reported three new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,519, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,343 in Maricopa; 3,052 in Pima; 1,259 in Pinal; 1,125 in Mohave; 954 in Yuma; 908 in Yavapai; 725 in Navajo; 534 in Apache; 440 in Cochise; 404 in Coconino; 294 in Gila; 203 in Santa Cruz; 149 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 24 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 841,448 in Maricopa; 167,950 in Pima; 86,291 in Pinal; 43,663 in Yuma; 37,824 in Mohave; 35,320 in Yavapai; 26,684 in Coconino; 26,198 in Navajo; 19,538 in Cochise; 15,912 in Apache; 11,840 in Gila; 10,268 in Santa Cruz; 8,868 in Graham; 3,563 in La Paz and 1,439 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 11% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 11% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,480 on Saturday. Just 81 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Saturday. About four in ten ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported about 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 64.2% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

— Steven Hernandez

10 a.m. Dec. 18: State adds 2,745 new cases, 3 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,745 to a total of 1,33,061 on Saturday. The state reported 29 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,516, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,341 in Maricopa; 3,052 in Pima; 1,260 in Pinal; 1,125 in Mohave; 954 in Yuma; 907 in Yavapai; 725 in Navajo; 534 in Apache; 440 in Cochise; 404 in Coconino; 294 in Gila; 203 in Santa Cruz; 147 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 25 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 839,480 in Maricopa; 167,569 in Pima; 86,270 in Pinal; 43,628 in Yuma; 37,809 in Mohave; 35,259 in Yavapai; 26,596 in Coconino; 26,159 in Navajo; 19,469 in Cochise; 15,889 in Apache; 11,825 in Gila; 10,263 in Santa Cruz; 8,856 in Graham; 3,555 in La Paz and 1,434 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 11% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,533 on Friday. Just 68 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 4% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Friday. About four in ten ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported about 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Saturday, which represents about 64.2% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.3% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Friday, which is below the national rate of 61.3%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 59.8% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Thursday, lower than the national rate of 65.2%.

— BrieAnna J. Frank

11 a.m. Dec. 17: Feweress than 1 in 5 nursing home residents have booster

An analysis by AARP released Friday shows that only 17% of nursing home residents and 6% of nursing home staff in Arizona had received a COVID-19 booster as of mid-November.

AARP officials say the low percentages are a concern with the holidays approaching. They say COVID-19 cases are on the rise again nationally in nursing homes, mirroring the rise of coronavirus cases in communities.

AARP is calling on nursing homes and state and federal officials to increase access to COVID-19 boosters for nursing home residents and staff.

Nationally, 38% of all U.S. nursing home residents and 15% of all direct care staff had received a booster as of Nov. 21, according to AARP.

As new COVID-19 variants emerge and vaccine immunity wanes, the low number of residents and staff who have received a booster creates an unacceptable risk because the disease spreads so easily in nursing homes, said Alex Juarez, a spokesperson for AARP Arizona.

Nursing homes have been hard hit by the coronavirus. Cases and deaths began declining after a federal program brought COVID-19 shots to the facilities in late December 2020.

In Arizona, 76% of nursing home residents and 72% of nursing home staff are considered fully vaccinated, which is defined as two weeks from receiving a two-dose mRNA series or one dose of Janssen vaccine.

— Anne Ryman

10 a.m. Dec. 17: State adds 3,686 new cases, 143 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,686 to a total of 1,330,594 on Friday. The state reported 143 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,487, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,324 in Maricopa; 3,050 in Pima; 1,259 in Pinal; 1,123 in Mohave; 954 in Yuma; 902 in Yavapai; 725 in Navajo; 535 in Apache; 438 in Cochise; 404 in Coconino; 294 in Gila; 203 in Santa Cruz; 146 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 25 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 837,314 in Maricopa; 167,227 in Pima; 85,942 in Pinal; 43,571 in Yuma; 37,661 in Mohave; 35,117 in Yavapai; 26,551 in Coconino; 26,073 in Navajo; 19,404 in Cochise; 15,861 in Apache; 11,789 in Gila; 10,251 in Santa Cruz; 8,854 in Graham; 3,547 in La Paz and 1,432 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 11% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,569 on Thursday. Just 83 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Thursday. About four in ten ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported about 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 64.1% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.2% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 61.2%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 59.7% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Thursday, lower than the national rate of 65.1%.

— Alison Steinbach

11:40 a.m. Dec. 16: Tempe to offer free at-home COVID-19 tests

Tempe will begin distributing COVID-19 home rapid test kits next week ahead of holiday gatherings.

The test kits, which come with two rapid tests that provide results in 15 minutes, will be available for free at the following city facilities:

  • Tempe Public Library, 3500 S. Rural Road.

  • Escalante Multi-Generational Center, 2150 E. Orange St.

  • Westside Multi-Generational Center, 715 W. Fifth St.

  • North Tempe Multi-Generational Center, 1555 N. Bridalwreath St.

Kits also will be available at Tempe Community Action Agency’s Oasis Drop-In Center, 1880 E. Apache Blvd., and at the nonprofit’s food pantry, 2146 E. Apache Blvd. TCAA will distribute test kits through its home-delivered meal program for seniors, too.

Tempe will receive up to 1,500 tests a week, and tests will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, the city announced Thursday.

People who test positive should self-report their results to their primary care doctor or to Maricopa County Public Health Department by calling 602-506-6767, the city said.

The program is part of the city’s efforts to increase vaccination and testing, particularly among young people, Latinos, in lower-income areas and areas where there have been high case rates. The city has administered more than 3,800 shots at dozens of clinics since launching the initiative in August.

Visit tempe.gov/coronavirus to find more information about the program and other COVID-19 resources.

— Paulina Pineda

11:30 a.m. Dec. 16: State adds 2,911 new cases, 20 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,911 to a total of 1,326,908 on Thursday. The state reported 20 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,344, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,257 in Maricopa; 3,022 in Pima; 1,256 in Pinal; 1,116 in Mohave; 949 in Yuma; 896 in Yavapai; 719 in Navajo; 529 in Apache; 433 in Cochise; 400 in Coconino; 292 in Gila; 202 in Santa Cruz; 145 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 834,891 in Maricopa; 166,791 in Pima; 85,709 in Pinal; 43,518 in Yuma; 37,531 in Mohave; 34,998 in Yavapai; 26,480 in Coconino; 26,036 in Navajo; 19,350 in Cochise; 15,829 in Apache; 11,756 in Gila; 10,220 in Santa Cruz; 8,831 in Graham; 3,539 in La Paz and 1,429 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 11% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,683 on Wednesday. Just 85 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Wednesday. About four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported about 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Thursday, which represents about 64% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56.1% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Wednesday, which is below the national rate of 61.1%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59.6% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 65%.

— Alison Steinbach

1:30 p.m. Dec. 15: Expect another surge due to omicron, ASU expert says

Arizona should expect another wave of COVID-19 due to the omicron variant, Joshua LaBaer, executive director of the Arizona State University's Biodesign Institute, said during a Wednesday briefing.

While it's unclear whether the omicron variant of the virus that causes COVID-19 will result in more severe illness, it is becoming clear that omicron is extremely contagious, LaBaer said.

The omicron variant, also called B.1.1.529, was first identified in specimens collected in November in Botswana and South Africa. It had been identified in at least 35 states as of Wednesday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Seven cases have been identified in Arizona, though there are likely many more since only a subset of COVID-19 tests are sequenced to identify variants.

"What we see in the United States is probably the tip of the iceberg. If we're detecting it in the labs it almost certainly means that it's more spread throughout our population already," LaBaer said. "What we know from overseas is that this variant is highly infectious. Even more infectious than delta ... It spreads extremely rapidly. In the U.K. they are seeing a doubling of cases every few days."

The COVID-19 vaccine "almost certainly" provides less protection against omicron than delta, but it does look like a booster shot provides much better protection than the initial two doses, he said.

Now is not the time to gather in big crowds indoors, LaBaer said. Anyone getting together with family members should be vaccinated and if they aren't vaccinated they need to get a rapid test the same day as the gathering, he said.

"I think we're at the beginning of what is likely to be a significant surge of omicron," LaBaer said. "Everywhere else it has been it has rocketed ... Arizona is not at the top of the list of highly vaccinated states, so there's plenty of what I would say kindling for the fire, if you will."

— Stephanie Innes

10:30 a.m. Dec. 15: State adds 3,249 new cases, 81 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,249 to a total of 1,323,997 on Wednesday. The state reported 81 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,324, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,251 in Maricopa; 3,022 in Pima; 1,253 in Pinal; 1,113 in Mohave; 948 in Yuma; 895 in Yavapai; 713 in Navajo; 529 in Apache; 433 in Cochise; 401 in Coconino; 292 in Gila; 202 in Santa Cruz; 144 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 833,090 in Maricopa; 166,437 in Pima; 85,571 in Pinal; 43,487 in Yuma; 37,439 in Mohave; 34,859 in Yavapai; 26,420 in Coconino; 25,897 in Navajo; 19,278 in Cochise; 15,800 in Apache; 11,742 in Gila; 10,203 in Santa Cruz; 8,818 in Graham; 3,531 in La Paz and 1,425 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,723 on Tuesday. Just 88 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Tuesday. About four in ten ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported nearly 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Wednesday, which represents about 63.9% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Tuesday, which is below the national rate of 61%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 59.5% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Tuesday, lower than the national rate of 64.8%.

— Alison Steinbach

11:30 a.m. Dec. 14: Pfizer drug Paxlovid effective with high-risk people

An experimental antiviral drug from Pfizer to help combat COVID-19, delivered in a five-day course of pills, reduced hospitalization or death among high-risk people by 89%, according to a final analysis of a previously released study conducted by the drugmaker.

A second study of people at average risk found the drug reduced their chances of developing severe disease by 70%, compared to a placebo. To get these results, the drug, called Paxlovid, must be given within three days of the beginning of COVID-19 symptoms — which will require people to quickly test and request a prescription once they feel ill.

The drug was tested on people who were not vaccinated but is also expected to protect people who have so-called breakthrough infections after vaccination.

Paxlovid appeared safe in both studies, which included nearly 3,500 volunteers, half of whom received a placebo. Lab studies also suggest the antiviral will remain potent against the omicron variant, which has been rapidly spreading across the globe.

The new research “underscores the treatment candidate’s potential to save the lives of patients around the world, whether they have been vaccinated or not,” Albert Bourla, Pfizer’s chairman and CEO said in a prepared statement. “Emerging variants of concern, like omicron, have exacerbated the need for accessible treatment options for those who contract the virus, and we are confident that, if authorized or approved, this potential treatment could be a critical tool to help quell the pandemic.”

Paxlovid is designed to block the activity of an enzyme that the coronavirus needs to replicate and is administered with a low dose of an HIV drug that helps slow the body’s breakdown of that enzyme so it remains active longer.

Late last month, an FDA advisory committee narrowly recommended authorizing a different COVID-19 antiviral from Merck, called molnupiravir. Unlike that drug, Paxlovid will not cause the kind of genetic mutations in the virus that had worried some on the committee.

— USA TODAY

10:30 a.m. Dec. 14: Universities finish semester with relatively steady cases

Arizona’s major universities are wrapping up the fall semester with relatively steady COVID-19 case counts after months of in-person, back on campus activity.

The Arizona Republic monitors COVID-19 spread at the three public universities and private Grand Canyon University, adding updates weekly to the blog. As of midway into the semester, the major university campuses had kept major outbreaks at bay.

Arizona State University on Monday reported a total of 156 known positive cases among its student population of 77,063, compared with 187 positives last week and 207 two weeks ago.

Of the student cases, 149 were off-campus in metro Phoenix. Five were isolating on the Tempe campus and two were isolating on the downtown Phoenix, ASU West or Polytechnic campuses.

There were 23 current known cases among 19,146 faculty and staff, compared with 49 positives last week and 33 two weeks ago.

ASU has reported 2,168 total positive cases since Aug. 1: 1,598 students and 570 employees. ASU has tested about 76% of students living on campus and about 29% of students living off-campus since Aug. 1.

At the University of Arizona, 52 students and employees tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 10 days, with a percent positivity of 1.5%, according to data posted Monday. Seven were on-campus students, 30 were off-campus students and 15 were employees. That 10-day number was 80 last week.

Test results from Monday returned 10 positives from 555 tests, for a percent positivity of 1.8%.

The university's seven-day average for new positive test results is nine per day, compared with 14 last week.

A total of 1,092 people have tested positive since Aug. 2 from 68,218 total tests, with an overall percent positivity of 1.6%. Of the 1,092 people, 234 have been on-campus students, 657 have been off-campus students and 201 have been employees.

The university has tested a total of 6,364 individual on-campus students, 9,020 off-campus students and 4,943 employees since Aug. 1.

Northern Arizona University was managing 63 COVID-19 cases among on- and off-campus students as of Dec. 8. Last week that number was 54.

The university did not post information about tests and cases among employees.

Testing locations run by NAU reported 212 positives among 2,229 total tests for the week ending Dec. 4. That’s a positivity rate of 9.5%. Of those 212 cases, 72 are NAU-affiliated and 140 are not.

Grand Canyon University reported 33 active cases as of Dec. 5, compared with 25 active cases the week prior. Of the active cases, 27 are students and six are employees. A total of 1,138 students and 125 employees have tested positive since Aug. 15. The university does not release the total number of tests administered or the positivity rate.

— Alison Steinbach

9:45 a.m. Dec. 14: State adds 2,168 new cases, 203 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,168 to a total of 1,320,748 on Tuesday. The state reported 203 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,243, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,222 in Maricopa; 3,020 in Pima; 1,240 in Pinal; 1,099 in Mohave; 945 in Yuma; 886 in Yavapai; 711 in Navajo; 528 in Apache; 429 in Cochise; 400 in Coconino; 290 in Gila; 202 in Santa Cruz; 143 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 831,365 in Maricopa; 166,096 in Pima; 84,980 in Pinal; 43,445 in Yuma; 37,367 in Mohave; 34,702 in Yavapai; 26,387 in Coconino; 25,831 in Navajo; 19,144 in Cochise; 15,784 in Apache; 11,714 in Gila; 10,190 in Santa Cruz; 8,799 in Graham; 3,520 in La Paz and 1,424 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. It’s at 13% so far for the week of Dec. 12. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,764 on Monday. Just 91 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Monday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported nearly 4.6 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Tuesday, which represents about 63.8% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 56% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Monday, which is below the national rate of 60.9%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59.5% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Monday, lower than the national rate of 64.8%.

— Alison Steinbach

9:30 a.m. Dec. 13: State adds 2,391 new cases, no new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 2,391 to a total of 1,318,580 on Monday. The state reported no new known deaths, keeping the death total at 23,040, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,130 in Maricopa; 2,984 in Pima; 1,221 in Pinal; 1,096 in Mohave; 942 in Yuma; 867 in Yavapai; 704 in Navajo; 521 in Apache; 422 in Cochise; 395 in Coconino; 286 in Gila; 200 in Santa Cruz; 143 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 24 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 830,216 in Maricopa; 165,803 in Pima; 84,692 in Pinal; 43,424 in Yuma; 37,246 in Mohave; 34,578 in Yavapai; 26,353 in Coconino; 25,768 in Navajo; 19,126 in Cochise; 15,763 in Apache; 11,693 in Gila; 10,188 in Santa Cruz; 8,793 in Graham; 3,516 in La Paz and 1,421 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21, 13% for the week of Nov. 28 and 12% for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,688 on Sunday. Just 75 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 4% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Sunday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Monday, which represents about 63.7% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.9% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Sunday, which is below the national rate of 60.8%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59.4% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Sunday, lower than the national rate of 64.7%.

— Alison Steinbach

Dec. 12: Just 68 ICU beds available statewide

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,231 to a total of 1,316,189 on Sunday. The state reported 19 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,040, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,130 in Maricopa; 2,984 in Pima; 1,221 in Pinal; 1,096 in Mohave; 942 in Yuma; 867 in Yavapai; 704 in Navajo; 521 in Apache; 422 in Cochise; 395 in Coconino; 286 in Gila; 200 in Santa Cruz; 143 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 24 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 828,549 in Maricopa; 165,457 in Pima; 84,682 in Pinal; 43,393 in Yuma; 37,182 in Mohave; 34,500 in Yavapai; 26,321 in Coconino; 25,697 in Navajo; 19,098 in Cochise; 15,745 in Apache; 11,675 in Gila; 10,172 in Santa Cruz; 8,785 in Graham; 3,515 in La Paz and 1,418 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 1,627 on Sunday. Just 68 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 4% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Sunday. That is the lowest number of ICU beds available in Arizona during the entire pandemic, according to state data.

The state reported more than 4.57 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 63.6% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.4% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Saturday, which is below the national rate of 60.7%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59.3% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Saturday, which is below the national rate of 64.6%, according to data released by the state.

Steven Hernandez

Dec. 11: State adds 3,774 new cases, 74 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,774 to a total of 1,312,958 on Saturday. The state reported 74 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 23,021, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,120 in Maricopa; 2,983 in Pima; 1,218 in Pinal; 1,094 in Mohave; 942 in Yuma; 867 in Yavapai; 704 in Navajo; 521 in Apache; 422 in Cochise; 394 in Coconino; 286 in Gila; 200 in Santa Cruz; 142 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 826,257 in Maricopa; 165,066 in Pima; 84,661 in Pinal; 43,291 in Yuma; 37,149 in Mohave; 34,434 in Yavapai; 26,235 in Coconino; 25,629 in Navajo; 19,024 in Cochise; 15,723 in Apache; 11,651 in Gila; 10,158 in Santa Cruz; 8,769 in Graham; 3,501 in La Paz and 1,410 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 10% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,770 on Thursday. Just 74 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 4% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Friday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 63.5% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.6% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 60.5%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 64.3%.

Haleigh Kochanski

11:30 a.m. Dec. 10: State adds 3,924 new cases, 93 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,924 to a total of 1,309,184 on Friday. The state reported 93 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,947, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,085 in Maricopa; 2,972 in Pima; 1,214 in Pinal; 1,084 in Mohave; 941 in Yuma; 866 in Yavapai; 701 in Navajo; 520 in Apache; 419 in Cochise; 394 in Coconino; 283 in Gila; 199 in Santa Cruz; 141 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 824,044 in Maricopa; 164,693 in Pima; 84,210 in Pinal; 43,233 in Yuma; 37,059 in Mohave; 34,259 in Yavapai; 26,167 in Coconino; 25,526 in Navajo; 18,958 in Cochise; 15,684 in Apache; 11,574 in Gila; 10,121 in Santa Cruz; 8,749 in Graham; 3,497 in La Paz and 1,410 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,770 on Thursday. Just 86 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Wednesday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 63.4% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.6% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 60.5%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 59% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 64.3%.

— Alison Steinbach

3 p.m. Dec. 9: State begins posting breakthrough COVID-19 infection data

The Arizona Department of Health Services this week began publicly posting data on breakthrough COVID-19 infections and state officials say the data so far underscores the effectiveness of the vaccine.

"It shows even more specifically, the significant risk that people who are unvaccinated are at for contracting COVID-19 and dying from COVID-19," said Jessica Rigler, assistant director for the division of public health preparedness at the Arizona Department of Health Services. "That risk persists across all age groups."

A breakthrough COVID-19 infection is a positive COVID-19 infection that occurs in someone who is fully vaccinated.. Even though booster shots are now being recommended, "fully vaccinated" is still defined as two shots in a two-dose series of either the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines, or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The rate of breakthrough infections in Arizona was 22% in October, and as of Dec. 6 there had been a total of 608 breakthrough COVID-19 deaths in the state, which works out to a breakthrough death rate of 0.02%.

What's most significant is the risk factors that it shows, Rigler said.

The data shows that unvaccinated people in Arizona had a 3.9 times greater risk of testing positive for COVID-19 and a 15.2 times greater risk of dying from COVID-19 in October compared to fully vaccinated persons, state officials said.

There's a lag time of a month with all the breakthrough data.

"That has to do with the public health surveillance activities that happen in order to confirm that a death is a COVID death. Because it does require that review of the death certificate," Rigler said. "And there are times when death certificates are amended or additional information comes in and it causes public health to reclassify the death."

The report, which is linked above the state's COVID-19 Data Dashboard, will be updated every two weeks Rigler said. The report published Wednesday does not include raw numbers of breakthrough cases, just rates and percentages. Rigler said there may be additional information included in subsequent reports.

-Stephanie Innes

9:15 a.m. Dec. 9: State adds 3,663 new cases, 75 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,663 to a total of 1,305,260 on Thursday. The state reported 75 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,854, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 13,043 in Maricopa; 2,961 in Pima; 1,209 in Pinal; 1,069 in Mohave; 939 in Yuma; 858 in Yavapai; 697 in Navajo; 518 in Apache; 418 in Cochise; 393 in Coconino; 281 in Gila; 199 in Santa Cruz; 141 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 821,487 in Maricopa; 164,190 in Pima; 84,130 in Pinal; 43,184 in Yuma; 36,957 in Mohave; 34,057 in Yavapai; 26,092 in Coconino; 25,404 in Navajo; 18,872 in Cochise; 15,628 in Apache; 11,547 in Gila; 10,097 in Santa Cruz; 8,724 in Graham; 3,482 in La Paz and 1,409 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 13% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 12% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,789 on Wednesday. Just 78 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 4% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Wednesday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Thursday, which represents about 63.3% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.5% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Wednesday, which is below the national rate of 60.4%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 58.9% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 64.2%.

— Alison Steinbach

9:45 a.m. Dec. 8: State adds 3,506 new cases, 18 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,506 to a total of 1,301,597 on Wednesday. The state reported 18 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,779, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,999 in Maricopa; 2,951 in Pima; 1,204 in Pinal; 1,068 in Mohave; 938 in Yuma; 850 in Yavapai; 694 in Navajo; 518 in Apache; 418 in Cochise; 393 in Coconino; 281 in Gila; 198 in Santa Cruz; 139 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 819,354 in Maricopa; 163,655 in Pima; 83,861 in Pinal; 43,138 in Yuma; 36,830 in Mohave; 33,924 in Yavapai; 26,020 in Coconino; 25,277 in Navajo; 18,834 in Cochise; 15,594 in Apache; 11,479 in Gila; 10,067 in Santa Cruz; 8,699 in Graham; 3,466 in La Paz and 1,399 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 14% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 13% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,753 on Tuesday. Just 96 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Tuesday. Four in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Wednesday, which represents about 63.1% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.4% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Tuesday, which is below the national rate of 60.1%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages 5 and older, 58.8% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Tuesday, lower than the national rate of 63.9%.

— Alison Steinbach

3 p.m. Dec. 7: Two Arizona hospital systems reach capacity on ECMO

Two major hospital systems in Arizona said on Tuesday that they had reached capacity for providing ECMO — extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, a last-ditch high-level treatment that works like an out-of-the-body, artificial lung.

ECMO adds oxygen to the blood, removes carbon dioxide and buys time for extremely ill patients whose lungs need to heal. It is used to buy time for certain COVID-19 patients, usually those who are younger and otherwise healthy, whose lungs are not irreversibly damaged and whose bodies need time to heal.

Dignity Health in Arizona and Banner Health confirmed Tuesday that they'd reached capacity on ECMO, though that can change at any time. Banner Health is Arizona's largest health system and typically accounts for about half of the hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the state.

HonorHealth and the Mayo Clinic in Arizona, which also have ECMO machines, did not immediately respond to questions about capacity.

Officials with the Arizona Department of Health Services directed questions about ECMO capacity to hospitals.

State health officials have said Arizona has 27 ECMO machines. But just because a hospital has an ECMO machine doesn't mean it always has the highly specialized medical expertise, a 24/7 medical team to monitor the patient on ECMO, and a program that's coordinated to manage patients who are on ECMO for extended periods of time. During a crisis, those resources can be difficult to come by.

Hospitals in Arizona are struggling during the state's latest surge of COVID-19 illness because of staffing shortages and higher-than-usual demand from non-COVID patients, in addition to ongoing COVID-19 hospitalizations fueled by patients who are not fully vaccinated. Just 96 beds — 5% of the state's total supply of Intensive Care Unit beds — were available on Monday, state data shows.

— Stephanie Innes

11 a.m. Dec. 7: Cases hold relatively steady at Arizona universities

COVID-19 cases at Arizona’s major universities are remaining more or less steady as the semester nears its end.

The Arizona Republic monitors COVID-19 spread at the three public universities and private Grand Canyon University, updating weekly. About two months into the semester, the major university campuses have kept major outbreaks at bay.

Arizona State University on Monday reported a total of 187 known positive cases among its student population of 77,063, compared with 207 positives last week and 191 two weeks ago.

Of the student cases, 175 were off-campus in metro Phoenix. Eight were isolating on the Tempe campus and four were isolating on the downtown Phoenix, ASU West or Polytechnic campuses.

There were 49 current known cases among 19,146 faculty and staff, compared with 33 positives last week and 50 two weeks ago.

Percent positivity for the weekly random testing program last week was about 3.5% for on-campus students, about 3.9% for off-campus students and about 1.3% for employees.

ASU has reported 2,075 total positive cases since Aug. 1: 1,527 students and 548 employees. ASU has tested about 76% of students living on campus and about 29% of students living off-campus since Aug. 1.

At the University of Arizona, 80 students and employees tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 10 days, with a percent positivity of 1.9%, according to data posted Monday. Eleven were on-campus students, 49 were off-campus students and 20 were employees. That 10-day number was 66 last week.

Test results from Monday returned 14 positives from 607 tests, for a percent positivity of 2.3%.

The university's seven-day average for new positive test results is 14 per day, compared with 16 last week.

A total of 1,054 people have tested positive since Aug. 2 from 65,401 total tests, with an overall percent positivity of 1.6%. Of the 1,054 people, 230 have been on-campus students, 633 have been off-campus students and 191 have been employees.

The university has tested a total of 6,311 individual on-campus students, 8,840 off-campus students and 4,844 employees since Aug. 1.

Northern Arizona University was managing 54 COVID-19 cases among on- and off-campus students as of Dec. 1. Last week that number was 60.

The university did not post information about tests and cases among employees.

Testing locations run by NAU reported 104 positives among 1,533 total tests for the week ending Nov. 27. That’s a positivity rate of 6.8%. Of those 104 cases, 39 are NAU-affiliated and 65 are not.

Grand Canyon University reported 33 active cases as of Dec. 5, compared with 25 active cases the week prior. Of the active cases, 27 are students and six are employees. A total of 1,138 students and 125 employees have tested positive since Aug. 15. The university does not release the total number of tests administered or the positivity rate.

— Alison Steinbach

9:30 a.m. Dec. 7: State adds 3,015 new cases, 172 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,015 to a total of 1,298,091 on Tuesday. The state reported 172 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,761, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,999 in Maricopa; 2,949 in Pima; 1,204 in Pinal; 1,065 in Mohave; 938 in Yuma; 840 in Yavapai; 694 in Navajo; 518 in Apache; 415 in Cochise; 393 in Coconino; 281 in Gila; 198 in Santa Cruz; 139 in Graham; 105 in La Paz and 23 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 817,303 in Maricopa; 163,219 in Pima; 83,382 in Pinal; 43,107 in Yuma; 36,779 in Mohave; 33,772 in Yavapai; 26,000 in Coconino; 25,200 in Navajo; 18,756 in Cochise; 15,564 in Apache; 11,431 in Gila; 10,042 in Santa Cruz; 8,680 in Graham; 3,456 in La Paz and 1,400 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 14% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. It’s at 13% so far for the week of Dec. 5. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,800 on Monday, an increase from recent days. Just 96 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Monday. Nearly 4 in 10 ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Tuesday, which represents about 63% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.3% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Monday, which is below the national rate of 60%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.8% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Monday, lower than the national rate of 63.8%.

— Alison Steinbach

9:45 a.m. Dec. 6: State adds 3,022 new cases, no new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,022 to a total of 1,295,076 on Monday. The state reported no new known deaths, keeping the death total at 22,589, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,920 in Maricopa; 2,928 in Pima; 1,190 in Pinal; 1,057 in Mohave; 931 in Yuma; 827 in Yavapai; 687 in Navajo; 514 in Apache; 408 in Cochise; 390 in Coconino; 280 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 137 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 815,557 in Maricopa; 162,926 in Pima; 82,910 in Pinal; 43,083 in Yuma; 36,666 in Mohave; 33,627 in Yavapai; 25,949 in Coconino; 25,131 in Navajo; 18,720 in Cochise; 15,558 in Apache; 11,411 in Gila; 10,025 in Santa Cruz; 8,667 in Graham; 3,452 in La Paz and 1,394 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14, 14% for the week of Nov. 21 and 13% for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,760 on Sunday, an increase from recent days. Just 98 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 6% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Sunday. More than one-third of ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Monday, which represents about 62.9% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55.2% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Sunday, which is below the national rate of 59.9%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.6% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Sunday, lower than the national rate of 63.7%.

— Alison Steinbach

10 a.m. Dec. 5: State adds 3,820 new cases, 28 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,820 to a total of 1,292,054 on Sunday. The state reported 28 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,589, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,920 in Maricopa; 2,928 in Pima; 1,190 in Pinal; 1,057 in Mohave; 931 in Yuma; 827 in Yavapai; 687 in Navajo; 514 in Apache; 408 in Cochise; 390 in Coconino; 280 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 137 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 813,527 in Maricopa; 162,492 in Pima; 82,907 in Pinal; 43,033 in Yuma; 36,581 in Mohave; 33,498 in Yavapai; 25,877 in Coconino; 25,051 in Navajo; 18,659 in Cochise; 15,532 in Apache; 11,383 in Gila; 10,011 in Santa Cruz; 8,662 in Graham; 3,451 in La Paz and 1,390 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14 and 14% for the week of Nov. 21. It’s at 13% so far for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 1,780 on Saturday.

Just 91 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Saturday. More than one-third of ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Sunday, which represents about 62.9% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

— Steven Hernandez

10 a.m. Dec. 4: State adds 6,043 new cases, 164 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 6,043 to a total of 1,288,234 on Saturday. The state reported 164new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,561 according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,895 in Maricopa; 2,928 in Pima; 1,188 in Pinal; 1,056 in Mohave; 935 in Yuma; 826 in Yavapai; 686 in Navajo; 513 in Apache; 408 in Cochise; 390 in Coconino; 280 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 136 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 810,904 in Maricopa; 161,873 in Pima; 82,884 in Pinal; 42,987 in Yuma; 36,550 in Mohave; 33,416 in Yavapai; 25,783 in Coconino; 24,999 in Navajo; 18,548 in Cochise; 15,492 in Apache; 11,338 in Gila; 9,985 in Santa Cruz; 8,645 in Graham; 3,445 in La Paz and 1,385 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14 and 14% for the week of Nov. 21. It’s at 13% so far for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,697 on Friday, down from 2,714 on Thursday. Just 94 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 5% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Friday. More than one-third of ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported more than 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Saturday, which represents about 62.8% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 55% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Friday, which is below the national rate of 59.7%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.5% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Friday, lower than the national rate of 63.5%.

— BrieAnna J. Frank

9:30 a.m. Dec. 3: State adds 5,256 new cases, 14 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 5,256 to a total of 1,282,291 on Friday. The state reported 14 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,397 according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,819 in Maricopa; 2,903 in Pima; 1,176 in Pinal; 1,053 in Mohave; 930 in Yuma; 812 in Yavapai; 680 in Navajo; 512 in Apache; 392 in Cochise; 386 in Coconino; 279 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 135 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 807,353 in Maricopa; 161,067 in Pima; 82,423 in Pinal; 42,897 in Yuma; 36,397 in Mohave; 33,180 in Yavapai; 25,584 in Coconino; 24,890 in Navajo; 18,321 in Cochise; 15,425 in Apache; 11,284 in Gila; 9,952 in Santa Cruz; 8,603 in Graham; 3,432 in La Paz and 1,383 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14 and 14% for the week of Nov. 21. It’s at 14% so far for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,714 on Thursday, up from 2,681 on Wednesday. Just 108 Intensive Care Unit beds, representing 6% of the statewide supply, were unoccupied on Thursday. More than one-third of ICU beds in the state were being used by COVID-19 patients.

The state reported about 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Friday, which represents about 62.7% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 54.9% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Thursday, which is below the national rate of 59.6%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.3% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Thursday, lower than the national rate of 63.4%.

— Stephanie Innes

11:45 a.m. Dec. 2: State adds 4,012 new cases, 33 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 4,012 to a total of 1,276,955 on Thursday. The state reported 33 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,383, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,814 in Maricopa; 2,901 in Pima; 1,176 in Pinal; 1,047 in Mohave; 930 in Yuma; 812 in Yavapai; 679 in Navajo; 512 in Apache; 392 in Cochise; 386 in Coconino; 279 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 135 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 804,278 in Maricopa; 160,397 in Pima; 81,996 in Pinal; 42,804 in Yuma; 36,291 in Mohave; 32,974 in Yavapai; 25,463 in Coconino; 24,732 in Navajo; 18,169 in Cochise; 15,369 in Apache; 11,199 in Gila; 9,909 in Santa Cruz; 8,582 in Graham; 3,414 in La Paz and 1,378 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14 and 14% for the week of Nov. 21. It’s at 14% so far for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,681 on Wednesday.

The state reported about 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Thursday, which represents about 62.5% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 54.7% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Wednesday, which is below the national rate of 59.4%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.2% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Wednesday, lower than the national rate of 63.2%.

— Alison Steinbach

10:30 a.m. Dec. 1: State adds 3,163 new cases, 43 new deaths

Arizona cases of COVID-19 increased by 3,163 to a total of 1,272,943 on Wednesday. The state reported 43 new known deaths, bringing the death total to 22,350, according to data released by the state.

The state reported death totals from these counties: 12,801 in Maricopa; 2,900 in Pima; 1,173 in Pinal; 1,046 in Mohave; 928 in Yuma; 804 in Yavapai; 678 in Navajo; 512 in Apache; 392 in Cochise; 385 in Coconino; 278 in Gila; 196 in Santa Cruz; 133 in Graham; 102 in La Paz and 22 in Greenlee.

Arizona reported case totals from these counties: 802,164 in Maricopa; 159,859 in Pima; 81,466 in Pinal; 42,770 in Yuma; 36,153 in Mohave; 32,734 in Yavapai; 25,395 in Coconino; 24,597 in Navajo; 18,114 in Cochise; 15,327 in Apache; 11,161 in Gila; 9,869 in Santa Cruz; 8,555 in Graham; 3,407 in La Paz and 1,372 in Greenlee.

For most of May and June, Arizona's percent positivity for COVID-19 testing was at 4-5%, before rising over the course of July, August, September and October. It was 12% for the week of Nov. 7, 13% for the week of Nov. 14 and 14% for the week of Nov. 21. It’s at 15% so far for the week of Nov. 28. The percentages are now for all diagnostic tests conducted, rather than for unique individuals tested, following a change to the state dashboard.

The number of patients hospitalized in Arizona for known or suspected COVID-19 cases was 2,661 on Tuesday.

The state reported nearly 4.5 million Arizonans had received at least one vaccine dose as of Wednesday, which represents about 62.4% of the total population. The state’s data dashboard now separates out doses administered to Arizona residents versus all doses administered in the state.

However, 54.7% of all Arizonans had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Tuesday, which is below the national rate of 59.4%, according to data from the CDC.

Of the vaccine-eligible population, people ages five and older, 58.1% of Arizonans had been fully vaccinated as of Tuesday, lower than the national rate of 63.1%.

— Alison Steinbach

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Arizona coronavirus: LIVE news updates on COVID-19 pandemic

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