July 12, 2020 - 11:26 am
PHOENIX — Gov. Doug Ducey says Arizona will be getting 361 cases of the experimental antiviral drug Remdesivir, which appears to help patients with COVID-19 recover faster.
The drug received emergency approval in May by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The shipment comes from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as Arizona grapples with a surge of coronavirus cases around the state.
Health officials reported 2,537 more confirmed coronavirus cases and 86 additional deaths on Sunday, bringing Arizona’s totals to 122,467 COVID-19 cases and 2,237 fatalities.
It’s the sixth time this month that at least 40 new deaths have been reported around Arizona, but the first time in eight days with fewer than 3,000 newly confirmed cases.
However, the number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
“We’ll continue working with our local and federal partners to get resources where they’re needed, and we need everyone to continue doing their part,” Ducey said Saturday on Twitter.
Last month, the Arizona Department of Health Services released guidelines on how Remdesivir would be allocated with the drug initially earmarked for high priority patients.
“The shipment will bolster state supplies with added capacity to treat tens of thousands of additional patients, if needed,” Ducey tweeted.
Arizona became one of the nation’s coronavirus hot spots in May after Ducey relaxed stay-home orders and other restrictions.
The state reached 1,000 coronavirus deaths on June 5 and 50,000 coronavirus cases on June 21.
Cases topped 122,000 on Saturday, three days after reaching the 112,000 mark and six days after reaching 100,000.
Ducey ordered the closure of gyms, bars, water parks and tubing business for 30 days on June 29.