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Doctors urge Arizona Legislature to reject GOP-backed anti-mask bill

PHOENIX – Over 130 physicians from across Arizona have signed a letter urging lawmakers to not pass a GOP-backed bill allowing businesses to ignore mask mandates.

If approved, House Bill 2770 would allow businesses to ignore mask requirements issued by cities, towns, counties or even the state without consequence.

Physicians believe the move would lead to another surge in COVID-19 cases and cause needless deaths, the letter claimed.

Among the physicians who signed their name was Scottsdale doctor Tammy Penhollow, DO, who said passing the proposed legislation would be a step backward amid the recent progress that has been made.

Penhollow explained while she understands the pandemic-fatigue some are experiencing, it is still too soon to let up.

“We can do this if we all continue to practice some safe behaviors and we will get there faster without a step back if we continue to use the masks,” she said, while crediting masks and other safety protocols for helping lower key COVID-19 metrics in the state.

Arizona has not had a statewide mask mandate during the pandemic but several cities and counties did have full mask orders in place.

The bill passed along party lines in the state house last month and is scheduled to be heard in the Senate Government Committee on March 22.

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