This State Is the Only Recent Epicenter to Contain COVID, Expert Says

After a record-breaking spike in coronavirus cases, Arizona has made a massive comeback.

There hasn't been much good news since the coronavirus pandemic surged across America, taking nearly 170,000 lives. However, one state is finally giving people some hope. Despite being a "red zone" in the U.S. a mere month ago, Arizona has managed to flatten the curb. During a recent interview on CBS News, Scott Gottlieb, MD, former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), applauded Arizona for containing COVID-19.

"Really, the only state that seems to have come down quite a bit of the epidemic Sun Belt states is Arizona," Gottlieb said on the Aug. 16 edition of Face the Nation.

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A few months ago, Arizona faced one of the country's most severe COVID spikes, jumping from 790 new cases on May 30 to a record-breaking 5,283 new cases on June 30. The surge was so bad in Arizona that some experts considered it "the worst in the entire country" and labeled the Sun Belt as the "global virus capital." This deadly peak triggered Gov. Doug Ducey to lock down the state a second time, shuttering all gyms, movie theaters, water parks, bars, and nightclubs for 30 days.

These immediate steps—paired with local mask mandates and social distancing measures—helped drastically reduce the amount of COVID cases in July. And now, the numbers are even better: On Aug. 16, Arizona had 884 new cases and 12 deaths, as well as a 61 percent decrease in average cases compared to two weeks prior, according to The New York Times. It also has an extremely low 0.69 infection rate.

The skyline of Tucson, Arizona with cacti in the foreground

The Grand Canyon State's epic comeback has not gone unnoticed. Anthony Fauci, MD, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), even congratulated Arizona on its effective health and safety protocols in an interview with CNN on Aug. 6.

"We saw in Arizona, which was a good example, they went up [in cases] and they started to really clamp down and do things right. And the cases came right down," Fauci said. And to find out which place isn't handling the coronavirus as well, This State Is Now Experiencing the Worst COVID Surge in the U.S.

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