Arizona on Friday surpassed the milestone of 1 million confirmed coronavirus cases after the state reported 3,707 new infections amid continued wrangling over vaccinations and mask requirements.
The state is now the 13th in the U.S. to hit that mark after starting with its first confirmed case at Arizona State University in January 2020 and then going on to be labeled “the hot spot of the world” amid last winter’s surge.
The state Department of Health Services noted the milestone in a tweet that urged people to get vaccinated.
The additional cases reported Friday increased Arizona’s pandemic total to 1,001,871.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data as of Friday ranked the state 13th in total number of cases and cases per 100,000 of population.
Arizona on Friday also reported 63 more virus deaths, raising the state’s pandemic total to 18,724.
The approximately 2,000 Covid patients occupying the state’s hospital beds during the current surge — the state’s third — is far short of the record of 5,082 set on Jan. 11.
But the recent surge of cases in Arizona means that “the trend is ominous,” the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association said in a statement Monday, adding that hospitals lack enough nurses and intensive care beds.
The association and public health officials urged people to wear masks and be vaccinated to combat the virus’ spread.
But there is raging debate in the state and court fights over efforts to require the shots and over mask requirements.