PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Arizona health officials reported 625 new coronavirus cases in Arizona Monday morning with no new deaths. However, this data does not represent the most accurate numbers.
According to a tweet from the Arizona Department of Health Services, the numbers released Monday, June 29 will not reflect all the new cases because of a lag in reporting data. AZDHS said one of their lab partners did not report their numbers to the department in time. The numbers from that lab will be reflected in Tuesday's update.
Arizona's Family has asked AZDHS for the name of the lab in question and for an interview with Dr. Christ. They denied both.
However, Sonora Quest willingly provided the numbers missing in the daily update to the media on Monday afternoon.
On June 28, Sonora Quest Laboratories reported a total of 2,454 patients with a COVID-19 diagnostic positive result. The state earlier reported a total of 625 cases.
A spokesperson for Sonora Quest released the following statement:
The delay took place due to the volume of results that were being processed over the weekend there was a slight technical glitch in reporting numbers. This has since been corrected and all of the results from Sunday have been provided to AzDHS. We are also implementing additional measures to ensure timely result submission to AzDHS as volume increases including reporting numbers well ahead of the deadline.
Additionally, Sonora Quest has been voluntarily submitting all results (both positive and negative) to the AzDHS since we started testing for SARS-CoV-2 and will continue to do so. We also are sharing the total number of COVID-19 tests that we have performed, along with the average result turnaround time, and positivity rate with Arizona media outlets on a daily and as needed basis to ensure transparency and help inform public health.
DATA UPDATE: The data that will be posted on the #COVID19 dashboard this morning will not reflect all the new cases. One of our lab partners did not submit their daily report in time. We apologize for the inconvenience. 1/— AZ Dept of Health (@AZDHS) June 29, 2020
According to the data released Monday morning, Arizona now has 74,533 cases statewide with 1,588 deaths.
Maricopa County, the state's most populous location, has the most cases -- 45,178. This is according to numbers released Monday, June 29.
Cities across Arizona mandate mask wearing in public places
Cities across the state have mandated mask-wearing in public places. Less than 24 hours after Gov. Doug Ducey said Arizona’s local governments could mandate that people wear face masks when out in public, cities and counties throughout the state started looking at option to do just that.
Here is the latest information on city-by-city face mask requirements throughout Arizona. We will update this list as more decisions are made and orders formalized.
Cities across Arizona consider mask mandates after Gov. Ducey's executive order
Mayors from cities across the state have said they are looking into creating policies to mandate mask-wearing in public places after Gov. Doug Ducey announced Wednesday that local governments have the authority to do so. Ducey's mandate comes after Arizona has seen a significant spike in coronavirus cases.
Today the Arizona Department of Health Services reported a single-day record of 2,519 new cases. That's just two days after the previous single-day record was set on Tuesday with 2,392 new cases. This is the highest number of COVID-19 new daily cases reported since the outbreak started.
Mayors from cities across the state have said they are looking into creating policies to mandate mask wearing in public places after Gov. Ducey announced Wednesday that local governments have the authority to do so.
Gov. Ducey gives local governments authority to mandate mask-wearing policies
Gov. Doug Ducey says he is giving local governments the authority to set policies that would require people to wear face masks in public. The announcement comes after our state saw a recent spike in the number of COVID-19 cases.
But, during Wednesday's news conference, the governor stopped short of issuing a mandate that would require everyone to wear a mask, even though he believes Arizonans should wear cloth face coverings in public, or in situations where physical distancing is not possible.
In a tweet sent out Wednesday morning, the Governor urged Arizonans to "Mask Up," to protect yourself, protect others, and to help contain the spread of COVID-19.
Later, in a new conference, he took it one step further, allowing local governments the authority to issue mandates. "We need every Arizonan to do their part," he said. "Every Arizonan should wear a face mask.
"You are most safe at home," he said. "If you do go out, wear a mask. It's the smart thing to do."
"We want people to stay healthy," he continued.
Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego has already said she plans to implement a mandatory mask policy. Gallego tweeted: "On our next agenda, Phoenix City Council will vote to mandate face masks for residents going to essential businesses and in public spaces. I fully support this measure. We will only overcome this virus by working together."
Gov. Ducey just announced that local governments can implement face mask policies.
Arizona health officials reported a record 2,392 new cases in one day
Arizona Department of Health Services reported a record 2,392 new coronavirus cases Tuesday morning. This is the highest number of COVID-19 new cases reported since the outbreak started.
In a press conference last Thursday, Gov. Ducey said that Arizona does have hospital capacity for both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients.
The increase in positive tests is not the direction we want to go," Ducey said. "We want to go the other direction."
The governor showed a chart illustrating a recent rise in positive COVID-19 tests around Arizona. He admitted that "this is not yet behind us." But, Ducey says our state does have hospital capacity.
"We want to reassure the public we have available bed capacity, and surge plans in place. We are well-prepared to manage an increase in patient volume," Ducey said.
AZDHS is recommending to maintain physical and social distancing, wash your hands thoroughly or use sanitizer, wear a face covering when out in public, cover your cough or sneeze, and stay at home when you are sick.
Banner Health says the number of COVID patients on ventilators has quadrupled
COVID numbers are continuing to spike at alarming rates as more people are being tested here in Arizona, amid the health department misreporting the number of available hospital beds in the state.
Now, hospitals have spoken out with major concerns about the virus and the numbers they’re seeing. Banner Health raised a major red flag Monday, tweeting that since May 15th their number of COVID patients on ventilators has quadrupled.
Arizona’s Family asked the health department if they're worried. “At this time, we are not concerned about a lack of ventilators, however we’ll continue to take a look,” said Jessica Rigler, the Assistant Director of the AZ Dept. of Health Services. “Banner is one system in the statewide system of healthcare facilities here.”
Governor Ducey rolls out plans for the AZCares Fund
The federal CARES Act money is getting dispersed to the United States. Gov. Doug Ducey has worked with Arizona mayors to make sure that Arizona's funds get spread out in areas that are in need of the assistance that will focus on smaller and more rural cities.
The state program is called the AZCares Fund and will provide $600 million in coronavirus relief and recovery money to local governments and nonprofits. The money will come from $1.9 billion in federal coronavirus relief funds that Ducey can spend at his discretion.
Gov. Ducey has worked with Arizona mayors to make sure that Arizona's funds get spread out in areas that are in need of the assistance that will focus on smaller and more rural cities.
Gov. Ducey announced the plan on Wednesday during a roundtable with eight mayors from cities and towns around the state. The program will include $441 million in direct, flexible funding to cities, towns, and counties that didn't receive direct funding by the federal government early this year.
Gov. Ducey: Arizona is in Phase One of reopening
Gov. Ducey said that Arizona is still in Phase One out of three phases guiding reopening handed down by the federal government. Ducey said he hopes to reopen schools in the fall as part of Phase Two. He said Arizona is headed in the right direction as COVID-like-illness and influenza-like symptomatic cases are continuing to decline.
Governor Ducey held his first press conference since letting his Stay-At-Home Order expired last Friday.
According to Ducey, the number of positive COVID-19 tests is dropping. The Arizona Department of Health Services (AZDHS) has been working to expand testing at prisons for inmates and correctional officers. They have been working on a plan to make sure all residents and staff in long-term care and skilled nursing facilities can be tested as well as receive the assistance they need.
In addition to the governor's press conference, the NCAA also announced that they will resume football, men's and women's basketball and voluntary activities starting June 1 through June 30.
Arizona's recovery continues with new Stay Healthy, Return Smarter, Return Stronger order
The next phase of Arizona's recovery begins Saturday, May 16 with Gov. Ducey's new executive order, Stay Healthy, Return Smarter, Return Stronger. The order ends the previous stay-at-home order and allows gyms, pools, movie theaters, restaurants and places of worship to reopen while following social distancing guidelines. The order also aims to ramp up testing ability, extending Arizona's testing blitz into the next two weekends.
The Governor's Office tweeted out that Arizonans still need to "act responsibly" as the state economy reopens in the first phase of his plan, "Stay Healthy, Return Smarter, Return Stronger."
Arizona Re-Opening, Stay-at-Home Order Expires
Gov. Doug Ducey announced that gyms and public pools may reopen on Wednesday, May 13. He also announced that Arizona's Stay Home, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected order would expire on May 15 as planned. Ducey also stated that major league sports games can continue without fans.
He urges caution and to keep maintaining safety protocols. "This is not a green light to speed; this is a green light to proceed," he said.
Gyms and fitness centers can reopen May 13.
On the day some retail stores were give the green light to open again, Ducey announced that salons and barbershops can reopen May 8, and that restaurants can reopen their dining areas on May 11.
New Peak Date
We’ve heard rumblings that the peak of the coronavirus crisis in Arizona might be behind us, but Dr. Cara Christ, the head of the Arizona Department of Health Services, said in a blog on April 22 that our peak might still be ahead of us – a month or more away.
Early on the pandemic, health care experts estimated that biggest need for resources for COVID-19 patients would happen sometime in mid- to late April.
Facilities that meet the specified standards will need to receive approval from the Department of Health Services before resuming elective surgeries.
Christ noted that there are several models and estimates. One model from HealthData.org indicates that as of today – April 22 – “Arizona has already passed our peak resource utilization ….” Another model from COVIDActNow.org shows that Arizona should “be able to meet any COVID-19 healthcare requirements with our current available capacity and our current mitigation strategies in place.”
AZDHS teamed up with experts from Arizona State University and the University of Arizona to do a deep dive and develop a model that’s specific to Arizona. It tells a different story. “The most recent baseline estimates a peak need for 600 hospital beds and 300 ICU beds around May 22.”
The federal model for Arizona, which comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, puts Arizona’s COVID-19 peak around June 11. That’s “assuming our mitigation strategies are lifted at the end of the current Stay Home, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected order on April 30th.”
Christ said Arizona has planned for the worst-case scenario “to make sure every Arizonan can access the level of care they need at the time they need it.” She said that’s why plans for alternate COVID-19 care sites like the one at the recently defunct St. Luke’s Hospital and the Arizona Surge Line, which is mean to prevent a virus surge at any single hospital, are still in the works.
This information is updated when the Arizona Department of Health Services releases new data, which happens every day at about 9 a.m.