PHOENIX - The latest number of new coronavirus cases in Arizona is slightly down from a day earlier, state health officials reported Monday.
The state Department of Health Services posted on its website there have been 2,196 additional cases, down from 2,592 on Sunday. That pushes the statewide total to 54,586.
Health officials also reported three more known deaths, making Arizona’s total so far to 1,342.
The state’s surge in additional cases the past week set daily records for hospitalizations, ventilator use and use of intensive care beds for coronavirus patients.
Arizona hit a daily new-case record of 3,246 on Friday.
The state has emerged as a COVID-19 national hot spot since Republican Gov. Doug Ducey lifted his stay-home orders in mid-May.
Health officials have attributed the new cases to increased testing and to community spread of the virus.
Saying that data trends were headed in the wrong direction, Ducey last week reversed himself and allowed local governments to impose requirements for people to wear masks in public to curtail spread of the virus. Most cities and counties have done that.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. But for some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.
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.
- 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.
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- 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.