Will Humble: December Looking Grim For COVID-19 In Arizona

By Jill Ryan
Associated Press
Published: Monday, November 16, 2020 - 9:27am

testing site
Sky Schaudt/KJZZ
A COVID-19 testing site at Scottsdale Community College in September 2020.

Arizona health officials are reporting 1,476 new confirmed COVID-19 cases but no new deaths.

The state Department of Health Services released its latest coronavirus figures on Monday. The number of hospitalizations due to COVID-19 including ventilator use continues to trend upward.

The total number of positive cases in Arizona since the pandemic started now stands at 276,912 with the death toll at 6,302.

Arizona’s outbreak bottomed out in September but has steadily increased through October and into November.

Will Humble
Bret Jaspers/KJZZ
Will Humble

Will Humble, former state health director, says while this month is manageable, December is looking grim.

“This feels [an] awful lot like June. And we could end up, you know, December could end up looking a lot like July, where we have overwhelmed hospitals," Humble said.

Health officials have said the recent increase is due to factors that include business and school re-openings and public fatigue with precautions such as masking.

Warning that conditions likely will get worse due to Thanksgiving family gatherings and other socializing, officials advise against congregating outside households that live together. They also continue to urge people to wear masks when in public, practice social distancing, wash hands frequently and stay home when sick.

Humble says Arizona needs to crack down on bars and nightclubs — and have a statewide mask mandate. He warns that if the state takes any longer, it may be too late.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.

Arizona Coronavirus Cases, Deaths

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