Arizona reports 10th straight day of over 5,000 virus cases

Arizona on Dec. 26 reported more than 5,000 additional known COVID-19 cases for the 10th straight day, as the surge put a pandemic-high number of virus patients in intensive care beds across the state.

The state Department of Health Services reported 6,106 additional known cases and 15 more deaths, increasing the state’s totals to 493,041 cases and 8,424 deaths.

The 983 COVID-19 patients in intensive care beds on Friday occupied 55% of all such beds in the state. Only 9% of ICU beds were available and not in use, according to the state’s coronavirus dashboard.

The total number of COVID-19 patients dropped to 4,165, down from a pandemic-high of 4,226 on Thursday, according to the dashboard.

Arizona has the third-worst COVID-19 diagnosis rate in the nation over the past week, behind California and Tennessee. The rate is calculated by dividing the state’s total population by the number of patients.

Arizona’s seven-day rolling average of new cases rose over the past two weeks from 6,059 on Dec. 11 to 6,323 on Friday, while the rolling average of daily deaths rose from 51 to 84, according to data from Johns Hopkins University and The COVID Tracking Project.

Coronavirus in Arizona: Latest case numbers

The rolling average of the daily positivity rate from COVID-19 testing improved, dropping from 24.2% to 13.7% during the same period.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.

MAP: Arizona Coronavirus cases by zip code

FULL COVERAGE: fox10phoenix.com/coronavirus

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