We appreciate the work of the talented professionals who assisted our team of public health professionals and experienced epidemiologists in developing a state model. The department established the partnership to provide an additional model for consideration. This model was completed on April 20, 2020. 

With months of data now available, we have shifted our primary focus from predictive models to using all of our real-time, Arizona specific data to assess the health of our healthcare system and evaluate the trend of our cases to make decisions that are best for Arizona. This and other data can be found on our COVID-19 data dashboard, which recently received an A+ for data quality by COVID Tracking.

Modeling Background

While the models may try to predict what lies ahead, they are simply predictions. As we’ve noted previously, these models differ wildly with one another, and some of the projections vastly differ from the data received through observing actual cases. 

In responding to COVID-19, the department has looked to a variety of different models, including one developed within the agency using Arizona-specific population data and modeling formulas from Harvard, the IHME model developed by the University of Washington, the model developed in partnership with Arizona universities, and a model developed by FEMA in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A breakdown of all of the models can be found in our blog discussing Arizona Specific COVID-19 Models and Projections.

While many of the current models show that Arizona’s capacity is sufficient to meet the projected need for hospital beds and ventilators, in order to protect Arizonans, we continue to prepare for a worst-case scenario to ensure all Arizonans have access to quality care and treatment.