By Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer
WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — The Navajo Department of Health and Navajo Area Indian Health Service, in coordination with the Navajo Epidemiology Center, reported that the total number of positive tests for COVID-19 has reached 270 for the Navajo Nation as of Friday – an increase of 29 cases since Thursday. There is now a total of 12 confirmed deaths related to COVID-19. A total of 2,353 COVID-19 tests have been administered, with 1,796 negative results as of Thursday.
The 270 confirmed positive cases include the following counties: Navajo County, AZ: 112; Apache County, AZ: 22; Coconino County, AZ: 83; McKinley County, NM: 15 *changed due to verification of residency for one individual; San Juan County, NM: 26; Cibola County, NM: 4; San Juan County, UT: 7; Socorro County, NM: 1.
Navajo Police Chief Phillip B. Francisco said enforcement officers will be issuing citations and fines for individuals who violate the Navajo Nation’s “Stay at Home Order” and daily curfew that requires all residents to be home between 8:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m.
“We’re at a point where the number of new cases will continue to climb each day, unless everyone begins to take this matter serious. Today, we received reports of bingo games taking place in a few areas – this needs to stop immediately! We have a public health crisis going on, and this is the type of irresponsible activities that put us all at risk,” said Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez.
“We have to meet our prayers half way by making smart decisions. Stay home, stay safe, save lives is the key to ending this pandemic. Unfortunately, it’s going to get worse before it gets better, but we are in this together. Many people are recovering from the virus and we hope to have an estimate on that number soon. Don’t lose hope because we will beat this together,” stated Vice President Myron Lizer.
The Navajo Nation’s daily curfew remains in effect from 8:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. The curfew does not apply to essential employees reporting to or from duty, with official identification and/or a letter of designation from their essential business employer on official letterhead which includes a contact for verification.
President Nez and Vice President Lizer will hold another online town hall COVID-19 update on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. (MDT) via Facebook. Radio forums are also scheduled for Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:00 p.m. on KTNN 660AM and 101.5FM.
For more information including reports, helpful prevention tips, and more resources, please visit the Navajo Department of Health’s COVID-19 website at http://www.ndoh.navajo-nsn.gov/COVID-19. To contact the main Navajo Health Command Operations Center, please call (928) 871-7014.
This is the second death made public of Dine' in the remote community of Navajo Mountain on the Arizona and Utah border, following the Chilchinbeto, Arizona, church gathering near Kayenta.
Sincere condolences to all the families.
Navajo Mountain: Former chapter official fighting for life, son deceased: