PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona health officials on Monday reported 475 new confirmed coronavirus cases but no additional deaths for the second consecutive day.

The latest numbers bring the statewide total to 226,050 cases with the death toll standing at 5,759.

On Saturday, state Department of Health Services officials reported 894 new cases. It was the largest daily increase since Sept. 17-18 when the count ballooned to 1,753 and 1,281, respectively. Since the state changed its counting methodology, each day added hundreds of past antigen test results to the total count.

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.

COVID-19 hospitalizations including ventilator use and occupancy of intensive care unit beds remained steady or creeped up slightly.

In other developments:

—The Pinal County Public Health Department has mandated the closure of San Tan Foothills High School after a cluster of COVID-19 cases was identified there. Department officials said the new cases and potential exposures were discovered Friday. The school of 600 students will be closed at least through Oct. 21, possibly longer.

County Public Health Department staff have been working with the school and the Florence Unified School District to evaluate the extent of the potential spread. District students started their second quarter on Oct. 5. Department officials said they will work with the school to contact students and staff who might have been exposed and ask that they quarantine for 14 days.

The last known exposure was Wednesday.

—University of Arizona officials said Monday that students who plan to travel home for the holidays should consider staying there for the rest of the semester. University President Robert Robbins said students will be encouraged to study remotely if they can, rather than risk contracting COVID-19 from traveling. Campus dorms will stay open for those who have nowhere to go.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.