COVID-19 positivity rates double in last 2 weeks at some Arizona testing sites

Published: Thursday, January 6, 2022 - 12:08pm
Updated: Friday, January 7, 2022 - 10:07am
Audio icon Download mp3 (1.12 MB)

COVID-19 positivity rates for some testing sites have doubled in the last two weeks due to the spread of the omicron variant. 

Embry Health, which provides testing across the state, shows about 16% of their tests were positive on Dec.  23, 2021. On Wednesday, that jumped to more than 37%. 

Data from the website shows positivity hasn’t dropped below 30% in the last week. 

Other testing labs are showing similar results. Sonora Quest Medical Director Regina Van Buren says its numbers also doubled, but they don’t provide the full story.  

“It's just impossible to account for all the antigen tests and the at-home antigen tests and many people aren't getting tested so it's hard to know what the true prevalence rate is just because the data is incomplete.” Van Buren said.  

Van Buren added these are the highest rates the lab has seen. Some experts say they are expecting a peak in the next two weeks.

Some testing providers are seeing the highest positivity rates of COVID-19 they have witnessed since the start of the pandemic. 

Embry Health and Sonora Quest Laboratories both saw a doubling of those with the virus in the last two weeks with both showing above 35% daily coming back positive. 

Van Buren says while the holidays played part in the spike, it’s how contagious the virus is that is leading to the spike. 

“But I also think with the omicron variant being so easily transmissible just the chances of catching it are so much higher than before omicron was in Arizona.” Van Buren Said.

Arizona Coronavirus Cases, Deaths

Coronavirus Science