Since Labor Day, data in Pima County shows that cases are growing overwhelmingly fastest within the 0-19 age group, followed by the 20-44 age group. This is why the number of deaths and hospitalizations continued to remain low, because those age groups have the lowest risk of death or hospitalization.
Other age groups are experiencing different trends, said Dr. Joe Gerald, an associate professor at the University of Arizona’s Zuckerman College of Public Health. “I haven’t seen any evidence that the 15-24 year olds and older groups are doing anything but continue to decline, albeit a little slowly now.”
The cases mainly concern student housing groups, be it dorms, off-campus apartments or Greek houses.
“If you take those cases out of the mix, we would be really doing pretty well,” Garcia said. “The bottom line is that even though we have this isolated set of cases clustered in and around the AU, I think the other parts of the city are in pretty good shape.”
The biggest concern, Garcia said, is the continuing risk of transmission in the community.
“This is the real reason why we push so hard, we work so hard with our university partners to get them to set up stay-at-home orders because we know the potential is there to cause harm to other parts of the community,” he said. “Despite the fact that our numbers are bad, this is part of the reason why I still think we are potentially not in a horrible condition.”
Asked about a shift in new cases clustered around the AU, unlike other areas where clusters have been seen previously, such as the south side, Garcia said it’s only “less in relative proportion.”