/ Modified apr 24, 2020 4:10 p.m.

Pima County Health Dept. head on PPE shortages, reopening state

A discussion with Dr. Bob England.

As Arizona continues to confirm coronavirus cases, the demand for personal protective equipment for health care workers and first responders has also remained consistent. Pima County Health Department interim director Dr. Bob England discussed where the need exists in the county and how facilities are adapting.

“I’m not at all sure why it’s been so hard for this country to produce some of the material it needs. But the hospitals right now, for day-to-day use, are in really good shape. Some of our long-term care facilities have issues, as do some of the first responder agencies. But we’ve been pushing it out just as fast as we can,” England said.

England also explained how the county makes its projections about when cases may peak and possible strategies for reopening the state.

“One thing about all those mathematical models that you’ve seen in news reports and in articles is that they’re not so much designed to accurately predict the future as they are to show you, relatively speaking, what happens if you do different courses of action,” England said. “We’re working pretty much hand-in-glove – all of the counties and the state health department – in developing our criteria that we think are important for a phased reopening.”

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