Arizona releases demographic information on coronavirus deaths

Arizona began releasing more detailed demographic information Sunday about the spread of the coronavirus that suggest a heavy toll among the elderly, men and Native Americans.

Health officials also released infection data by zip code along with the statewide availability of health care resources including ventilator breathing machines, as confirmed coronavirus infections across Arizona rose Sunday to 3,539 and deaths linked to the pandemic increased to 115.

MAP: Confirmed COVID-19 cases in Arizona by zip code

Of the 115 known deaths from the virus, 78 were people aged 65 or older. Men accounted for 63% of the death toll.

The state has race and ethnicity data for about half of its coronavirus deaths. About 16% of those deaths were Native Americans. Native Americans account for less than 6% of the state’s population.

COVID-19 infections have spread with ferocity on the Navajo Nation, which extends across a portion of Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah. A first-time weekend curfew was in place across the Navajo Nation to limit the virus’ spread.

Officials cautioned that a map of infection tallies by zip code should not be used to determine the current risk of transmission because the statistics represent a two-month period in which patients may have already recovered and are no longer infectious.

The state also began publishing updates on statewide health care capacity and the current utilization of emergency room beds, inpatient beds, intensive care beds, and ventilators in hospitals.

“This is data we are monitoring closely as it shows us where we need to focus our efforts to increase capacity,” the Department of Health Services said in a statement. “The information is now posted on our dashboard and demonstrates that right now, there is capacity within our health care system to handle an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations.”

At last count Sunday, there were 1,023 intensive care beds in use and 984 intensive care beds still available. The state had 365 ventilators in use and 1,174 available.

In order to protect yourself from a possible infection, the CDC recommends: 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

LIVE: Interactive Coronavirus case data and map


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