Coronavirus Cases In The State Of Arizona
There was one confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Phoenix, Arizona, but the affected individual — a young man in the Arizona State University community — was removed from isolation on February 21, 2020.
According to AZcentral, this person had come back from a trip to Wuhan, China when it was discovered he had the COVID-19 virus, ultimately landing him in isolation at a medical facility. He was there for 26 days before being released after numerous tests came back showing the virus was gone.
The testing on the man was done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the hospital staff.
“We would like to thank this individual for his patience and commitment to public health during his prolonged isolation with very mild illness,” Maricopa County health officials said in a statement.
“There is no risk of COVID-19 to the community from this individual, and we encourage his friends, family and the community to support him as he transitions back to his everyday activities,” they added.
Arizona Response Plans
The state of Arizona is gearing up for a possible outbreak should the current travel restrictions not be enough or an individual slips through. Cara Christ, director of Arizona Department of Health Services, announced that Arizona will become one of a small group of states that will be able to expedite detection of the Coronavirus.
“Depending on when the tests came in, we’d be able to take public health action that day,” Christ said, adding that the state would no longer need to send the test results of possible infected to the CDC.
She also petitioned to Arizonians that they should maintain “good hygiene” to protect from infection now or months down the road, should the outbreak hit the United States hard.
“The disease appears to be spread through droplets, so make sure to practice good hygiene like washing your hands thoroughly,” Christ stated, according to KTAR.
Arizona School System Response To Coronavirus
Because air transportation to Asian countries is now a risk, Arizona Universities are beginning to cancel trips abroad, with ASU leading the charge.
“ASU has made the decision to cancel its study abroad programs in South Korea, effective February 26, 2020. The university is working with students to make alternate arrangements, including assistance with flight arrangements and travel plans for students already in the country,” the university said in a statement.
As for the rest of the state’s education system, there is no indication that classes will be cancelled or schools temporarily shutting down.
Some education officials have noted that closing schools — or the system entirely — could result in chaos. Some are saying that the better option might be to break classrooms of 30 kids into small groups of 5-10 students. They would not be able to meet at a school should this happen, but kids would still be able to proceed — albeit cautiously — with learning despite a COVID-19 outbreak.
What Arizona Residents Should Know About COVID-19
Most health officials and the CDC are declaring the Coronavirus to be very similar to the flu, with several respiratory symptoms like coughing, sneezing, or shortness of breath. However, people can contract the virus without showing any issues.
“In all likelihood, a vastly large number of people are having mild or no symptoms,” Dr. Bob England of the Pima County Health Department said. “I would expect once this thing gets around, it’s really going to get around and it’s going to infect a lot of people. But it’s going to feel like a bad flu season.”