Special Report

COVID-19: Yuma, AZ Metro Area Among the Most Dangerous in America

The U.S. reported over 511,000 new cases of coronavirus over the seven days ending November 30, bringing the total count to more than 47.9 million confirmed cases of COVID-19. There have been more than 773,000 COVID-19-related deaths — the highest death toll of any country.

New cases continue to rise at a steady rate. In the past week, there were an average of 0.7 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 Americans — essentially unchanged from the week prior, when there were an average of 1.5 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people.

While new data shows that the risk of contracting COVID-19 is high in almost every part of the country, cities continue to be the sites of major outbreaks and superspreader events. Experts agree that the virus is more likely to spread in group settings where large numbers of people routinely have close contact with one another, such as colleges, nursing homes, bars, and restaurants. Metropolitan areas with a high degree of connectivity between different neighborhoods and a large population may be particularly at-risk.

The Yuma, AZ metro area consists of just Yuma County. As of November 30, there were 20,390.7 confirmed cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 Yuma residents, the 18th highest rate of all 383 metro areas with available data. For comparison, the U.S. has so far reported 14,848.4 cases per 100,000 Americans nationwide.

In order to slow the spread of COVID-19, city and county governments have ordered the closure of thousands of consumer-facing businesses. These measures have led to widespread job loss and record unemployment. In the Yuma metro area, unemployment peaked at 25.0% in April 2020. As of May 2021, the metro area’s unemployment rate was 14.8%.

To determine how the incidence of COVID-19 in the Yuma, AZ metro area compares to the rest of the country, 24/7 Wall St. compiled and reviewed data from state and local health departments. We ranked metro areas based on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.To estimate the incidence of COVID-19 at the metropolitan level, we aggregated data from the county level using boundary definitions from the U.S. Census Bureau. Population data used to adjust case and death totals came from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey and are five-year estimates. Unemployment data is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and is seasonally adjusted.

These are all the counties in Arizona where COVID-19 is slowing (and where it’s still getting worse).

FIPS MSA Population Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of November 30 Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of November 30 per 100,000 residents Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of November 30 Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of November 30 per 100,000 residents
39150 Prescott Valley-Prescott, AZ 228,067 32,381 14,198.0 787 345.1
43420 Sierra Vista-Douglas, AZ 125,867 17,993 14,295.2 388 308.3
46060 Tucson, AZ 1,027,207 158,853 15,464.6 2,883 280.7
29420 Lake Havasu City-Kingman, AZ 207,695 35,865 17,268.1 1,046 503.6
22380 Flagstaff, AZ 141,274 25,268 17,885.8 383 271.1
38060 Phoenix-Mesa-Chandler, AZ 4,761,603 878,076 18,440.8 13,905 292.0
49740 Yuma, AZ 209,468 42,712 20,390.7 927 442.5