COVID-19 cases are steadily increasing

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COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Arizona. It’s not a dramatic increase but the numbers are not going in the right direction.

Will Humble from the Arizona Public Health Association said, “we’re not in an exponential growth phase, at least not yet. But it is steady growth and what it does is it tells you that it’s time to take some measures.”

Humble suggests that we need to, “do a much better job with compliance and enforcement with those CDC mitigation measures within bars, restaurants and nightclubs,” so we can avoid more rigorous things later.

In other states, residents are beginning to stay inside, but Arizona is coming into cooler temperatures, leading residents to spend more time outside.

So, why are the numbers still increasing?

Humble said, “there’s two components that I know are at play.” Schools and universities are back in session and, “some of the bars and restaurants are not complying with the CDC mitigation measures,” such as enforcing face coverings and social distancing.

We are almost approaching flu season and in combination with COVID-19, it could have an impact on hospital capacity.

“January is the month with the most hospitalizations, part of that’s the influenza season, part of it is winter visitors returning to the valley with their pre existing conditions, and sometimes elective procedures,” Humble said.

He mentions that January is the month to be wary of and that it’s important to take the necessary CDC precautions now rather than later.

“We’ll still have COVID-19 even if the vaccine begins to be deployed at that time,” said Humble.

Many vaccines are in phase three of the trial stage, meaning it is the last step before releasing these vaccines to the public.

“I’m confident that at least some of these vaccines will be both safe and effective,” said Humble.

After many months of isolation, “we’ve learned a lot about this virus, since March and April,” and it’s a matter of getting a handle on indoor activities, said Humble.

He understands the frustration and said we need to be taking precaution in a targeted way. But that, “doesn’t mean you have to give up your life. It just needs to mean that you have to make more thoughtful decisions as you go about your day to day activities.”

Will Humble, Executive Director, Arizona Public Health Association

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