Arizona sees a small dip in cases, but experts say the state is far from a trending decrease

Arizona sees a small dip in cases, but experts say the state is far from a trending decrease

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Statistics show Arizona’s coronavirus spike has taken a pause but it’s still too early to call it a trend.

Numbers released by The Washington Post and John’s Hopkins University show Arizona had a 3 percent decrease in the past week.

“The decrease is pretty slight,” said Dr. Theresa Cullen, medical director for the Pima County Health Department. “Even a minor decrease becomes important because it’s stopping the tremendous increase we’ve been seeing.”

Cullen said the slowdown is likely due to a combination of factors such as the closing of bars and gyms and more people wearing masks.

“I think what we would anticipate seeing is a more significant decrease in the next two weeks that we could attribute to wearing masks as well as closing the bars,” she said.

In his press conference, Gov. Doug Ducey alluded to the slow down.

“You see a flattening, you see a plateau and even a day or two of a decrease in cases,” Ducey said. “This is encouraging.”

Two weeks ago the governor put the reopening of the state on pause by closing bars, gyms, movie theaters and water parks for a month.

He also urged people to wear a mask when social distancing was not possible although, despite urging from several mayors, he has not imposed a statewide mask-wearing mandate.

The governor did acknowledge them in his remarks.

“I want to applaud local leaders across the state for how they have helped persuade and convince Arizonans they are safer wearing a mask,” Ducey said.

Cullen said she believes “we can celebrate if we can stabilize this increase.”

She believes the best the state can hope for is at this time is to reach a plateau and then begin a gradual trend downward.

“I would say mid-August early September, we will be starting down this curve,” Cullen said.

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