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Arizona reports 5,442 additional COVID-19 cases, 82 deaths

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona on Thursday reported 5,442 additional known COVID-19 cases, 82 more deaths and increased hospitalizations as the coronavirus surges in the state.

The additional deaths were the most reported in a single day since August but the state Department of Health Services said 46 resulted from reviews of past death certificates. It wasn’t immediately known whether those deaths occurred during the current surge this fall or earlier.

However, the pace of COVID-19-related deaths reported in Arizona has increased by 57% in the past two weeks.

According to Johns Hopkins University data analyzed by The Associated Press, the seven-day rolling average of daily deaths in the state increased from 19.6 on Nov. 18 to 30.7 on Wednesday.


Reported daily deaths topped 100 on three days in August, including 104 reported on Aug. 26.

According to the state’s coronavirus dashboard, Arizona has reported totals of 346,421 known cases and 6,821 deaths.

COVID-19-related hospitalizations across Arizona totaled 2,743 on Wednesday, up from 2,699 on Tuesday and including 642 patients in intensive care unit beds.

Hospital officials and public health experts have warned that the outbreak is on track to exceed the capacity of the state’s health care system this month unless more action is taken to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Gov. Doug Ducey has acknowledged the growing outbreak but declined to take several steps sought by advocates, including a statewide mask mandate. The governor has urged everyone to wear masks and called for better enforcements of existing restrictions on certain businesses and gatherings.

The seven-day rolling average for daily new cases in Arizona rose in the past two weeks from 2,563 on Nov. 18 to 4,304 on Wednesday, according to data from The COVID Tracking Project.

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.

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