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Ducey announces multiple measures to slow spread of COVID-19 in Arizona

PHOENIX — Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey announced multiple measures on Wednesday to address the rise in coronavirus cases across the state — but not a mask mandate.

“Arizona and our nation remain in a public health emergency and getting back to normal is not in the cards right now,” Ducey said in his first press conference since Oct. 29.

Ahead of Thanksgiving, the Arizona Department of Health Services released guidelines to safely celebrate the holiday. The guidelines include celebrating outside, minimizing guests, avoiding buffets and more.

Additionally, with winter visitors expected to start making their way to the state, Ducey has asked AZDHS to work on launching on-site coronavirus testing locations for travels at Phoenix Sky Harbor International, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway and Tucson International airports.

The remaining efforts include:

  • Additional $25 million for hospital staffing
  • Doubling investments for public service announcements
  • Ensuring schools are implementing mask policies on school grounds and buses
  • Providing up-to-date information about coronavirus vaccines

The additional measures come as Arizona continues to see a rise in coronavirus cases. On Wednesday, state health officials reported 3,206 new coronavirus cases and 53 additional deaths, bringing the documented totals to 283,102 COVID-19 infections and 6,365 fatalities.

The rolling seven-day average for the state health department’s newly reported cases was 2,394.71 for Tuesday, according to tracking by The Associated Press. That’s 80% higher than the Nov. 1 mark of 1,330 and the second-highest average since Aug. 1.

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