Arizona virus-related ER visits surge as more research tests | Arizona News

PHOENIX (AP) — Virus-related emergency room visits have set a pandemic record in Arizona, where hospitals are packed and cases are on the rise even as COVID-19 deaths have fallen a bit.

The Arizona Department of Health Services reported on its daily dashboard Thursday that there were 2,371 COVID-19-related ER visits on Wednesday, up from 1,407 on Dec. 27. The previous peak of these emergency visits was 2,341 on December 29, 2020.

Dr. Frank LoVecchio, a physician at the Valleywise chain of hospitals in Phoenix, attributed the jump in part to increased demand for tests as more people come to the emergency room because they don’t know where to go. get tested.

“Early one recent morning, about half of the 40 people queuing at one of the emergency departments where I work had just come in to be tested,” LoVecchio said.

He said ER staff prefer people to get tested at sites dedicated for that purpose, like the dozens of drive-thru sites set up by Embry Health around the Phoenix metro, or pharmacies like CVS.

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Arizona reported an additional 10,679 confirmed cases and 16 additional deaths on Thursday.

Arizona’s seven-day rolling average of daily new deaths has fallen over the past two weeks, from 70.3 on Dec. 21 to 60.9 on Tuesday.

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