Tuesday, January 5, 2021
A Horrible Mess

Yesterday, this graphic met my eyes via facebook:

Source: News 4 Tucson - KVOA
Image edited for visual clarity

ABC15.com gives the textual information:
"PHOENIX -- For the second time during the pandemic, Arizona is leading the world with the highest seven-day average of COVID-19 infections per capita.

"According to 91-divoc.com, a COVID-19 tracking site that uses data from Johns Hopkins University, Arizona currently has the highest COVID-19 per capita rate of any region in the world.

"The state is reporting 121.8 newly confirmed COVID-19 cases over the past seven days per 100,000 people. California, the state with the second highest number of newly confirmed cases in the past seven days per 100,000 people comes in at 97.8.
Source: https://www.abc15.com/news/coronavirus/arizona-has-highest-rate-of-covid-19-in-the-world-latest-data-shows

The HILL also gives further info:
"High rates of COVID-19 transmission are being reported across the state, but in particular around the capitol of Phoenix, according to state health officials.

"Arizona is one of a handful of states that have been resistant to employ strict measures to control the virus. It does not have a mask mandate and remains largely devoid of restrictions on indoor dining, bars and nightclub activities that other states implemented months ago to slow COVID-19's spread.

"The state hit a record number of hospitalizations resulting from the virus last month, with more than 4,300 hospitalized across the state with coronavirus. Gov. Doug Ducey (R), briefly instituted stay-at-home measures last spring but declared as early as May that the state was "clearly on the other side of this pandemic" and relaxed those measures."
Source: https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/532631-cdc-says-arizona-has-uss-highest-rate-of-new-covid-19-infections
(Bold text is my edit for clarity.)

Arizona is "LARGELY DEVOID OF RESTRICTIONS". Thus, this has been the result.

What does this mean personally?

A dear friend of ours may be losing his battle with covid.

Nick is at home, after a week in hospital. He's in hospice, and is receiving oxygen and pain/anxiety relieving medicines at home.

He took what he thought was every precaution. But he trusted the guidance of Arizona state leaders, who allowed gyms to remain open for indoor activities.

In a letter dated October 28, 2020, he wrote about church gatherings, linking to a You Tube event:
"I send this to show how we do it in Canada virtually. We do not consider safe or clever to meet physically."

This is the advice in Alberta, Canada. No indoor physical gatherings!

But when he travelled to Arizona, he followed Arizona guidance. Although he stayed clear of indoor dining in restaurants, he went frequently to the gym for exercise classes.

I was quite worried about this, but he assured me on November 19, 2020:
"The gym experience was not perfect but acceptable. They are very clean and the density is miniscule. Every body follows the rules and there were only 4 students in a very large room over 2,000 sq ft. I will keep going. They have very few coaches."

I replied:
"Are the people at the gym wearing masks?"

Nick assured me:
"Yes all people at any time are wearing masks, at the gym, and observe social distancing."

On December 3, 2020, Nick wrote:
"Our thighs are a bit sore because we were at the YMCA in the AM."
Here, the particular gym in question is named.

On December 23,2020, Nick writes:
"Sunday night, I felt bad and very weak and my skin was sensitive and painful. No other symptoms
On Tuesday we went and were tested for Covid and we will know the results in 3 or 4 days. Until we hear the results we will avoid any contact with anyone.
I am betting that it is a seasonal flu and nothing more."

On December 24,2020, Nick writes:
"On Sunday 20-Dec Nick was feeling ill.
On Tuesday the 22-Dec my skin was itchy and painful. We went to The South West and we were tested for Covid.
Today Thursday-24-Dec they phoned that Nick tested positive and surprisingly Shirley is negative.
We are quarantined for 10 days -2-January."

On December 24,2020, Julia replied:
"You felt the first symptoms on Sunday 20 Dec. Where did you go on Thurs. 17 and Fri 18 December, and where have you been since then? This is important to know so everyone encountered can be warned from the place you acquired the virus and those to whom you may have spread it during the latency period. I know you love the yoga and the gym, but these are super-dangerous just now because the "pro-forma" precautions are just inadequate."

Nick did not reply to this. Neither Julia nor I received any more emails from Nick since December 24, 2020. He either didn't feel well enough for computers, or was simply quarantining in a separate bedroom from Shirley's.

The next letter we receive is from Shirley, December 29, 2020:
"Yesterday Nick had some confusion. At 5AM today Nick got out of bed and walked to the kitchen and fell. I was able with his help to get him up and back to bed.

"At 8am he was in pain and I was able to get him to ER. He was 82% pulse ox. He was immediately taken in and put on a stretcher and started on oxygen. He had a scan of his head, chest and right hip. All were ok. No broken bones. They repeated the covid test and did blood work.

"The Dr decided to keep him as his oxygenation was variable on 4 L of oxygen. It was sort of a 50/50 decision.

"I was not allowed to go with him. I talked to him on the phone, he was settled in and cared for. He is able to get analgesic for the swelling ((edited): where he fell).

"I hope if he is able and willing, to have him home tomorrow."

But that's not quite the way it went. Shirley spent most of her days and nights at the hospital this past week, while Nick's oxygen levels kept falling. He quit eating. And now he's at home, on hospice. I worry about Nick and miss him so much. I miss his letters, too.

I hold all State leaders responsible who felt it reasonable to be "devoid of restrictions". They put PROFITS ahead of PEOPLE. They listened to the demands of the covidiots who want their bars open. And now we are our country's worst region. As America has the greatest majority of Covid cases, that puts ARIZONA at "WORLD'S WORST"!

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