Senator highlights Arizona’s ranking as the worst state in the nation for administered COVID-19 tests per capita and discusses the implementation of contact tracing in Arizona
WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema exchanged ideas and discussed strategies with invited participants on how to safely reopen Arizona during a Senate Homeland Security Committee roundtable. Sinema highlighted the latest data indicating that Arizona ranks as the worst state administering COVID-19 tests per capita in the nation.
“We all want the economy to open as quickly and safely as possible… but we all acknowledge that to re-open strong, we need to be safe and smart about how we do it… Moving too quickly or taking on too much risk will likely lead to a resurgence of the virus, a greater loss of life, and longer-lasting economic harm,” said Sinema, a member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
The Kaiser Family Foundation released data on May 5, 2020 indicating that Arizona is the state ranking last in the nation for administering COVID-19 tests per capita. Sinema stressed the data clearly shows Arizona has work to do before it is safe to reopen and that public messages from the government should reflect that fact.
Sinema shared that the administration included contact tracing as one of the critical components in safely and slowly re-opening localities. Sinema discussed with a health expert how Arizona can determine if their tracing model is robust enough, considering counties like Maricopa and Pima that have been hard-hit and other counties where cases and hospitalizations have remained lower.
Sinema has been a vocal advocate of contact tracing following the quick spread of COVID-19 in the United States. In April, Sinema and Republican Senator Mitt Romeny (Utah) urged the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to implement a robust contact tracing system to protect Arizonans from the spread of the coronavirus and future pandemics.