PHOENIX - The Arizona Department of Health Services announced on Oct. 1 that all 15 counties in Arizona have met benchmarks for safely reopening businesses such as indoor gyms and fitness centers, bars serving food, and movie theaters.
On Oct. 1, Graham County advanced to the moderate transmission stage of COVID-19, joining all other Arizona counties, with the exception of Greenlee County, which remains in the minimal stage.
“The choices Arizonans have made in the interest of public health have gotten us to this milestone,” said ADHS Director Dr. Cara Christ. “COVID-19 remains in our communities, so it’s essential that everyone continue masking up, maintaining physical distance, washing our hands thoroughly and often, and taking other steps to reduce the spread.”
The state department of health services reported 705 new cases of coronavirus on Oct.1 and 24 additional deaths.
The business benchmarks stem from Gov. Doug Ducey’s June 27 executive order that paused some businesses reopening after Arizona became a national hotspot.
The department’s announcement of the counties’ current classifications did not mention that Pima and Coconino counties recently had increased numbers of cases per capita above the reduced levels that previously improved their overall classifications to moderate.
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.
According to Johns Hopkins University data analyzed by The Associated Press, Arizona’s seven-day rolling average of daily new cases dropped from 481 new cases on Sept. 16 to 460 on Sept. 30.
Meanwhile, the seven-day rolling average of new deaths in the state rose slightly from just over 17 to just under 18.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
In order to protect yourself from a possible infection, the CDC recommends:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- Monitor your health daily
FULL COVERAGE: fox10phoenix.com/coronavirus
Arizona COVID-19 resources, FAQ: azdhs.gov/coronavirus
On CoronavirusNOW.com, you'll find extensive coverage about COVID-19, including breaking news from around the country, exclusive interviews with health officials, and informative content from a variety of public health resources.
- Coronavirus in Arizona: Latest case numbers
- Coronavirus: Symptoms, testing and how to prepare amid growing COVID-19 outbreak
- How coronavirus differs from flu: Symptoms to watch for
Symptoms for coronavirus COVID-19 include fever, coughing, and shortness of breath. These, of course, are similar to the common cold and flu.
Expect a common cold to start out with a sore or scratchy throat, cough, runny and/or stuffy nose. Flu symptoms are more intense and usually come on suddenly, and can include a high fever.
Symptoms of COVID-19 may appear more slowly. They usually include fever, a dry cough and noticeable shortness of breath, according to the World Health Organization. A minority of cases develop pneumonia, and the disease is especially worrisome for the elderly and those with other medical problems such as high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes or heart conditions.
Right now there's one big difference between flu and coronavirus: A vaccine exists to help prevent the flu and it's not too late to get it. It won't protect you from catching the coronavirus, but may put you in a better position to fight it.
To protect yourself, wash your hands well and often, keep them away from your face, and avoid crowds and standing close to people.
And if you do find yourself showing any of these flu or coronavirus symptoms - don't go straight to your doctor's office. That just risks making more people sick, officials urge. Call ahead, and ask if you need to be seen and where.