sign over highway encouraging social distancing AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

A model that originally said Arizona would see more than 1,500 coronavirus-related deaths in the coming months is now predicting only 570.  

Arizona surpassed 2,500 coronavirus cases Tuesday, according to the state health department

The state has now reached 2,575 cases and 73 deaths. That’s 119 more cases recorded since Monday and an increase of eight deaths. 

Arizona’s outlook seems to be improving though, as a model that previously predicted hospital bed shortages in the state has since changed to show the current number of beds will likely be sufficient. 

The University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation model that originally predicted that Arizona would see more than 1,500 deaths is now predicting only 570 deaths by Aug. 4. It also says Arizona will hit its peak of resource usage and deaths on April 23. 

The model’s predictions change is based on new data about cases and deaths. Numbers also change according to governments’ policies on school closures, stay-at-home orders, closing of nonessential businesses, and travel restrictions. 

However, the current projections assume full social distancing will be in place through May. At the federal level, social distancing guidelines have only been extended through April 30. 

Ducey Halts Small Business, Nonprofit Evictions

Although Gov. Doug Ducey delayed evictions for renters in March, his executive order left small businesses and nonprofits still at risk of losing their space during the coronavirus pandemic. 

But on Monday, he halted evictions for those groups as well. His new order delays evictions until May 31 and encourages landlords to defer rent payments for small businesses, as well as waive any late fees. 

“Arizona is grateful to the many landlords who are already working as good partners with small businesses during these challenging times,” Ducey said in a press release. “This order helps ensure no small business or nonprofit will face eviction due to COVID-19 and that landlords and small businesses work in partnership to make sure we get through this emergency together.”

Small businesses and other renters are also protected from foreclosure – Ducey signed a cooperative agreement with banks on March 30 to suspend foreclosures and evictions for two months. According to the governor’s office, many banks have also allowed deferred payment of business loans and some consumer loans. 

All 30 MLB Teams Could Soon Play in Arizona

Major League Baseball and the players’ union are considering a plan in which all 30 teams would begin the season in Arizona playing in empty ballparks, according to The Associated Press.

Sources told The AP the idea was floated in call about how to continue the season in light of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Arizona normally hosts 15 teams for Spring Training games, but the preseason was canceled in early March. The Phoenix area has 10 ballparks built for the preseason, as well as the Diamondbacks’ stadium downtown, making it one of the top location options for continuing play. 

When the MLB canceled Spring Training, it also announced opening day of the regular season would be moved from March 26 to April 9. President Donald Trump, however, has since extended social distancing guidelines through at least April 30.