What You Need to Know-Week of May 9th

The most important weekly updates for you to keep your community healthy




In this Update:

1. Urgent Updates: COVID-19 Metrics

2. Quick Question: What is the current, dominant variant circulating in Arizona?

3. Information You Need: Food Resources in Arizona




1. Urgent Updates: COVID-19 Metrics


Updated as of: 05-09-2022

Weekly case, death, and hospitalization counts:

In the past week, there has been an average of:
Cases per day559
Deaths per day34
Compared to two weeks ago:
Cases per dayIncreased by 65% ↗
Deaths per day Increased by 721% ↗
Hospitalizations per day Decreased by 1% ↘

For a breakdown of vaccination by Arizona counties, visit the CDC’s website.

For updated vaccine information and data in Arizona, visit this link and click on the “Vaccine Administration” icon.



2. Quick Question: What is the current, dominant variant circulating in Arizona?


TGEN, a genomics research institute, sequences a proportion of the positive COVID-19 PCR test samples across Arizona to determine the variant that caused the infection. The TGEN institute provides a dashboard that shows a weekly percentage of sequenced tests that can be attributed to different variants.


Currently, the dominant variant is the BA.2, Omicron variant – it accounts for over 80% of all infections among the sequenced tests. As a reminder, the BA.2 variant appears to be somewhere between 30-60% more transmissible than the Omicron, BA.1 variant. The symptoms experienced by individuals who have contracted the BA.2 variant (e.g., mainly sore throat, headache, body aches, fatigue) and the severity of symptoms (e.g., mostly minimal) for most healthy individuals appear to be similar to the BA.1 variant. You can keep track of what variants are circulating here; Arizona COVIDseq Tracker (tgen.org)

However, it is important to note that not all positive tests are genome sequenced to determine the variant that caused the infection and there is a delay of about one week from the time PCR tests are collected and then sequenced. 

We will be keeping an eye on any new variants that could be introduced. There were recently several cases of B.4 and B.5 originally detected in South Africa, identified here in the United States. New variants will likely be relatively normal given the extremely high global circulation of COVID-19. As with past variants, people who are vaccinated, including boostered will have lower risk of infection, illness and death. It is important to get vaccinated and to receive boosters when you are eligible. Prior infection does provide some protection but the degree of protection varies more than that from the vaccines and wanes over time. 


3. Information You Need: Food Resources in Arizona


If you are having difficulty getting healthy foods in your area, there may be support available. Use the resources below for more information.

  • For up to 60lb of rescued produce for only $10, Market on the Move has distribution sites around Tucson, Phoenix, and Northern Arizona. Find out more here: http://the3000club.org/wordpress/marketonthemove/
  • Contact Arizona 2-1-1 (dial 2-1-1 on your phone or visit https://211arizona.org/about/) for assistance with a wide variety of services, including food, shelter, utilities, and more. 
  • To find out if you qualify for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, formerly known as food stamps, please visit Health-E-Arizona, a service of the Department of Economic Security (DES): https://www.healthearizonaplus.gov
  • Many schools in Arizona are offering free grab-and-go for anyone younger than 18, regardless of attendance at that school. To find a school near you and learn more, please visit: https://www.azhealthzone.org/summerfood/ 
  • For an interactive map of services in your community that are providing healthy meals, please visit No Kid Hungry: https://www.nokidhungry.org/find-free-meals or text the word “FOOD” to 877-877
  • To find your nearest food bank and more information on how the foodbank can help you, please visit AZ Food Banks Network: http://www.azfoodbanks.org/ or call call 602-528-3434 or 1-800-445-1914.

If your family is not struggling with food insecurity, please consider supporting a local food bank. Donations of time, food, or money are always appreciated. Remember that donating money allows food banks to purchase the exact supplies they need, often at much lower bulk prices than at a grocery store, so your dollars will go further in their hands. To find a food bank near you and how you can help, please visit http://www.azfoodbanks.org/ or https://www.feedingamerica.org/take-action




If you would like to learn more about this and other topics related to COVID-19 in Arizona, please complete next week’s AZCOVIDTXT survey that you will receive via text in about a week.

View Updates from Past Weeks:
Update from week of May 02 (English | Spanish)
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