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Bill targeting mask mandates in Arizona schools passes Senate, moves to Ducey’s desk

The future of classroom COVID-19 mitigation measures now lies in Gov. Doug Ducey’s hands: A bill the state Senate approved Monday would force schools to seek parental consent if they want to keep their students masked up. ... Read more»

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Flu down in Arizona for second year; reason may be as plain as the mask on your face

Arizona flu cases are down sharply for the second year in a row, a decline that health experts are attributing to the health and safety precautions that came with the COVID-19 pandemic. ... Read more»

On 2nd anniversary, COVID-19 still racks up grim milestones in Arizona

Two years after Arizona’s first confirmed case of COVID-19, the state has racked up close to 1.8 million infections and the virus has killed almost 26,000, just two of many grim milestones on the pandemic’s “really long journey.” ... Read more»

COVID-19 on track to be leading cause of death in Arizona in 2021

COVID-19 claimed almost 15,800 lives in Arizona this year, putting it on track to be the leading cause of death in the state in 2021 - a change from 2020, when the virus was the third-leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer.... Read more»

Fentanyl, COVID-19 help drive overdose deaths to record 12-month high

The COVID-19 pandemic and a growing unsafe drug supply combined to push overdose deaths up by 27.6% in the U.S. over a 12-month period from 2020 to 2021, a surge in deaths that was matched in Arizona. ... Read more»

Arizona Latina moms, environmental advocates fight air pollution with electric school bus

In one west Phoenix neighborhood, several Latina moms came together in a grassroots organization that works to spark environmental change in Latinx communities to help their kids by targeting the air-fouling diesel school buses their children ride each day.... Read more»

Analysis finds COVID-19 was the leading cause of death in Arizona

A new report by the Arizona Public Health Association found that COVID-19 was the leading cause of death in Arizona during the pandemic, unlike in other similar states that had more aggressive mitigation measures. ... Read more»1

HHS says COVID-19 vaccinations may have saved 1,000 lives in Arizona

COVID-19 vaccinations have saved an estimated 1,000 lives in Arizona and have prevented as many as 2,800 hospitalizations for the disease, according to recent estimates from the Department of Health and Human Services. ... Read more»

COVID-19 death toll in Arizona expected to top 20,000 this week

The Arizona Department of Health Services said there had been 19,959 deaths as of Wednesday, with the state averaging 40 to 50 deaths a day in recent weeks, and close to three-fourths of those deaths have been to people age 65 and older.... Read more»

Ban on school mask mandates violates Arizona Constitution’s 'single-subject' rule, opponents argue

A coalition of Arizona educators and parents is asking a Superior Court judge to scrap the Legislature’s ban on school mask mandates before it takes effect on Sept. 29.... Read more»

White House plan would let Arizona schools skirt Ducey's ban on mask mandates

Gov. Doug Ducey’s threat to withhold funding from schools that impose mask mandates took a severe hit Thursday, when the White House said local school districts can apply directly to the federal government “to restore funding withheld by state leaders.” ... Read more»

Most Arizona voters support masks in schools, but not Republicans

A recent poll shows a strong majority of Arizona voters — but only a small fraction of Republicans — support face mask mandates and vaccine requirements in schools and government buildings to combat the spread of COVID-19.... Read more»

Experts hope FDA’s full Pfizer vaccine OK boosts Arizona vaccinations

Health officials expressed hope Monday that the Food and Drug Administration’s full approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine will boost vaccinations in Arizona, which lags well behind the national average. ... Read more»

Surge in COVID-19 puts Arizona on pace to hit 1 million cases this week

Arizona is on pace to record its 1 millionth COVID-19 infection within the week, and health experts fear that kids in schools and the looming Labor Day holiday will only make matters worse. ... Read more»

Arizona will follow new CDC mask guidelines, while Ducey lashes out at feds

Arizona health officials will update guidance to follow new recommendations from the CDC urging people, including those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19, to wear masks in enclosed public spaces - though they remain voluntary due to new state laws prohibiting mandates. ... Read more»

Another COVID surge in Arizona? Sharply rising cases worry health experts

Arizona had been seeing a decline in COVID-19 cases but new data is showing that cases are continuing to rise, with 11 of the state’s 15 counties having “substantial” spread and the state increasing its number of cases for five consecutive weeks as hospital capacity continues to be strained. ... Read more»

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