New coronavirus cases in Arizona “could maybe possibly” have peaked, data suggests

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For the first time in Arizona, the number of weekly coronavirus cases decreased from one week to the next.The total number of new, confirmed cases from May 11 to May 17 was 2,666. The week before, new cases totaled 2,786, according to an Arizona Daily Star analysis of data reported to the Arizona Department of Health Services.This week-to-week decline signals that the number of new cases “could maybe possibly” have peaked in Arizona, said Dr. Joe Gerald, an associate professor with the University of Arizona’s Zuckerman College of Public Health.But it’s difficult to confidently determine if that’s so because increases in diagnostic testing slowed in the same week, Gerald said. Testing during the prior four weeks had been increasing much more rapidly.Statewide diagnostic testing only increased by about 8% during the week of May 11, according to the Star’s analysis. It had increased by nearly 61% the week before. And it increased by nearly 73% the week before that.“So we would expect to find different numbers of people if we test at a really differential amount, because it tends to change who we test,” Gerald said.Nevertheless, testing is increasing, so the decline in cases is a “suggestive, pretty …

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