Arizona Coronavirus Deaths Jump to 21 in One Day

By Brandy Rae Ramirez

April 21, 2020

Plus, Banner sets up grocery stores for workers and celebrities lend a helping hand to the Navajo Nation. Here’s your coronavirus Tuesday update.

The number of deaths associated with COVID-19 in Arizona jumped to 21 in one day, the Arizona Department of Health reported Tuesday.

According to the department’s daily update, the number of positive coronavirus cases is now up to 5,251 cases and 208 deaths, with 21 new deaths reported for the day. Additionally, the state confirmed 652 new coronavirus tests were conducted as well.

The state health department updated it’s dashboard again on Monday to continue providing more in-depth data related to COVID-19; however, Tuesday, the Department announced it’s having technological difficulties.

Despite the jump in deaths within a 24-hour period, some Arizonans are protesting reopening the economy despite the continued increase of cases and deaths. Some Arizona nurses took to the streets Monday to counter-protest, and were incorrectly accused of being “actors.”

RELATED: Head of Arizona GOP Thinks Nurses Who Counter-Protested Rally Are ‘Actors’

However, nurses who attended the event said they were there for themselves and their colleagues battling this pandemic.

Banner Health Sets Up Makeshift Grocery Stores For Workers

Because of what healthcare workers are facing in Arizona, Banner Health is setting up makeshift grocery stores for workers on the front lines tending to coronavirus patients.

The provider announced Monday that select metro Phoenix hospitals will have on-site locations where healthcare workers can pick up provisions.

Fruits, vegetables, bread, dairy products and eggs are among the essentials that will be available to physicians, nurses and other staff at a discounted price.

Banner officials say they hope to ease the burden for workers who are putting in especially long shifts.

The facilities that will offer groceries are in Queen Creek, Glendale, Scottsdale and Phoenix. In Mesa, Banner Desert Medical Center will instead have grocery boxes available to buy.

Arizona-based Banner Health, one of the largest nonprofit health care systems nationwide, owns and operates 28 acute-care hospitals.

The Navajo Nation Gets Help From Big Celebrities

The Navajo Nation also continues to be greatly impacted by the pandemic. As of Monday, the Nation reported positive tests for COVID-19 reached 1,321 – an increase of 124 positive cases since Saturday.

The overall number of positive cases includes those on the Navajo Nation and nearby border towns. The Nation added that the report also includes 4,579 total negative test results and a total of 45 confirmed deaths related to the virus.

President Nez addressed the Navajo Nation on Monday

With the impact facing the Navajo Nation, a few big names in Hollywood are pitching in to help in the fight against coronavirus.

Actor Jason Mamoa sent 20,000 cans of his Mananula Pure Water to the Navajo Nation, said Cassandra Begay, a spokesperson for Navajo and Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief Fund

The Navajo Nation has a shortage of running water, and many households, have to use bottled water, or water by barrel from a communal supply point.

At least 15% of Navajo Nation homes have no running water at all, but the real number may be 40% to 50%.

In addition to Mamoa, actors Mark Ruffalo, Paul Rudd, and Taika Waititi are focusing their efforts on Protect the Sacred, an initiative to educate Navajo youth to rise up and protect their language, elders, medicine ways, and cultures during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Ruffalo, Rudd, and Waititi have participated in Protect the Sacred livestreamed Facebook events and have used social media to spread the word.

“I know it’s tough to be inside as a young person — there is nothing that anyone could do to hold me inside the house as a kid — it’s not just about saving ourselves and our grandparents but this thing attacks young people, and hundreds and hundreds of young people have died from it already. It’s indiscriminate on who it gets,” Ruffalo said in the livestream. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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