Arizona COVID-19, flu and RSV numbers on their way down
Dec. 15, 2022
Cases of COVID-19, RSV and the flu are on the rise in Arizona, and with the holidays coming up and more people gathering indoors, health officials are concerned about a surge from three different directions. Here with the latest is Will Humble, executive director of the Arizona Public Health Association.
How is Arizona doing on COVID numbers?
“The daily numbers really are not the way to examine those anymore, because so many people are doing home tests, so what I do is I look at the 7-day moving average of hospitalizations, so both admissions and also the census of people, and it’s about 9-10% of people in Arizona hospitals are there for COVID-19.”
“So it looks like we’re on the backslide of the most recent seasonal increase in COVID with respect to hospitalizations.”
How does this compare to last winter? The winter before that?
“Two winters ago, hospital bed capacity was 68% for COVID, that was really absorbing pretty much all the capacity except for people who really needed them. We’re not anything like that right now.”
How are vaccination rates?
“Terrible,” said Humble. “Something like 12% of Arizonans have gotten the bivalent booster, this the one that targets Omicron, it’s terrible.” He also notes that nursing home vaccination rates are sitting at 23-24%.
What are we seeing with the flu?
“Same thing on the flu. We are having an early influenza season, and if you look at the 7-day average of new hospitalizations, that’s on the decline as well. That may have crested as well, it could be that it flattens out because of the holidays, and people going to parties and things like that. So while things are high in terms of hospitalizations, both COVID and influenza, at least the trend line is starting to go back down.”
What about RSV?
RSV numbers are still “off the charts” according to Humble, but are quickly going down.