It’s the first time in five days that the state Department of Health Services’ daily tally of new cases has been below 3,000. This brings the pandemic totals for Arizona to 988,714 cases and 18,600 deaths.
The number of hospitalizations due to COVID-19 continues to go up and stands at 1,901. The last time it was that high was mid-February as Arizona was coming down from a winter surge.
Arizona and much of the nation are dealing with a resurgence of COVID-19 brought on by the new delta variant. Hospitals and many medical professionals and some politicians are practically begging people to get vaccinated, since the vaccine in most cases prevents severe infections. School districts and states continue to butt heads over mask mandates.
Meanwhile, Monday marked the first day of fall classes at the University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University. They and Arizona State University are all requiring masks in certain indoor spaces.
University of Arizona president Robert Robbins emphasized during a weekly briefing that their mask requirement was not in defiance of any state law. Gov. Doug Ducey’s executive order bans mask mandates at universities for unvaccinated students and staff.
"We’re not differentiating between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals," Robbins said.
The school will continue to encourage free testing even for vaccinated students and faculty as well as the vaccine. Robbins also said almost half of enrolled students have uploaded proof of their vaccination status.
More COVID-19 news
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- Pentagon to make COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for military
- Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine gets full FDA approval
- 'I feel good': 82-year-old Glendale man receives COVID-19 booster shot
- Mask mandate showdown: AZ governor says 'Leave the schools to the states; that's how the Constitution reads'
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
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.
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.
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