White House task force: COVID in Oklahoma is ‘unyielding’
Mike Seals - November 12, 2020 11:20 am
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The White House Coronavirus Task Force is again recommending a mask mandate in Oklahoma amid a surge of coronavirus cases and hospitalizations in the state.
“The unyielding COVID spread across Oklahoma continues with new hospital admissions, inpatients, and patients in the ICU at record levels, indicating deeper spread across the state,” according to the report released late Wednesday by the Oklahoma State Department of Health. “The most recent trends … need immediate action including mask requirements to decrease severity in morbidity and mortality among Oklahomans.”
Gov. Kevin Stitt has opposed a statewide mandate and, on Tuesday, joined with physicians to call on residents to voluntarily wear masks, socially distance and frequently wash their hands.
The report also recommends limiting restaurants to 50% capacity and reducing their hours.
Data from Johns Hopkins University shows Oklahoma’s 7-day rolling average of new cases per day has risen from 1,185 to 2,080.
There were a reported 142,334 coronavirus cases in Oklahoma Wednesday and a record 1,248 people hospitalized.
The true number of infections is likely higher because many people haven’t been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.