We get it.
After a couple months of relative seclusion, you’re probably eager to see friends and extended family, enjoy a favorite meal out of the house, and finally get that haircut you’ve been putting off. As Arizona begins to reopen, it may be tempting to put the COVID-19 pandemic out of your mind.
COVID-19 remains a serious public health threat --- invisible, deadly and highly contagious. The Arizona Department of Health Services continues to report hundreds of new positive cases each day, and approximately 1,000 Arizona fatalities have been attributed to this virus in less than three months.
Just as important, we don’t know what comes next. Will numbers spike as Arizona re-opens? Does a second peak loom with the return of cooler weather in the fall?
On behalf of nearly 100,000 Arizona registered nurses --- many of whom continue to work on the front lines of COVID-19 --- we urge you to be careful. We can’t know the future, but each of us can minimize our risk. Here’s how:
The good news is the vast majority of Arizonans have behaved responsibly through this pandemic, and that has kept Arizona hospitals from becoming overrun and saved countless lives. Thank you.
Reviving Arizona’s economy or protecting public health is a false choice. We can do both. As government restrictions expire, the responsibility falls to each of us to take the steps that will keep our communities safe.
Editor's note: Robin Schaeffer is the executive director of the Arizona Nurses Association.