Mayor, Spokane county commissioners change tune on moving to Phase 3 – The Spokesman-Review

Recently Spokane County Health Officer Dr. Bob Lutz would rule out the county commissioners demand to immediately begin the process to move the county to Phase 3 of re-opening, citing evidence of community spread. Because Lutz turned down commissioners request, there have been 274 brand-new cases.

A surge in brand-new cases of COVID-19 has persuaded the Spokane County commissioners and Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward to withdraw their earlier push to loosen up pandemic limitations.

Simply 10 days ago, Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward supported the county commissioners demand to move into Phase 3. However on Friday, she stated that while she anticipated an increase in the variety of cases to increase due to robust contact tracing and screening, the recent uptick in hospitalizations is “worrying.”.

” I think the greatest thing we require to be mindful about is attempting and wearing the mask to drive these numbers down so we can get our businesses back open.”

Woodward stated she understands the requirement numerous feel to move into Phase 3, especially given that Spokane is surrounded by counties already at Phase 3 and surrounded by a state with fewer limitations.

Lutz stated that without more individuals physically distancing, wearing face coverings and following gathering assistance for Phase 2, citizens can expect to stay put in the governors reopening stages. As it is, hospitalizations have doubled in the last 2 weeks and case counts have ballooned.

” We do not wish to see that boost, and I think our medical facilities are very concerned,” Woodward said.

Woodward said she comprehends the need numerous feel to move into Phase 3, specifically provided that Spokane is surrounded by counties already at Phase 3 and bordered by a state with less constraints. However the fastest way to arrive, she stressed, is to wear a mask. She encouraged residents to wear one, and local services to need that clients put on one to get service.

While moving back a phase is not likely, more stringent enforcement on wearing face coverings might be around the corner. Gov. Jay Inslee and Secretary of Health John Wiesman went to Spokane on Thursday, and the guv cautioned that an order comparable to the one released in Yakima County is possible here. In Yakima County businesses can not serve clients without facial coverings.

Spokane County Commissioner Mary Kuney stated the high number of brand-new cases is worrying and people need to take precautions when they can, and use f facial covering when around other individuals, even a scarf if theyre uneasy with masks.

Spokane County Commissioner Al French said commissioners were having a “continuous discussion” with health officials about new cases and hospital capacity and stated he does not plan to press for re-opening for a couple weeks a minimum of.

” I think its a continual tracking of the scenario,” she said. “Youve got to look at the numbers over a rolling 14-day average. I do not think you can say whenever frame till we can get our numbers back down.”

When local officials met Inslee on Friday, Woodward stated the main subject was the mask order, and said the governor leaned on them to help motivate compliance.

When Woodward posted on Facebook about masks previously this week, she received about 1,400 reactions– more than she ever has before, she said. Most of commenters opposed wearing a mask, and the dominating factor was that people did not desire the federal government to inform them what to do.

” I understand that, however were discussing a health pandemic like weve never ever seen prior to and in some cases you need to take more amazing measures … I do not know anyone who likes wearing a mask, but to me its a small sacrifice so we can get to that next stage,” Woodward said.

As early as last week, the commissioners and Woodward were requesting that health authorities permit Spokane County for an immediate relocation to Phase 3 of the guvs re-opening strategy. In interviews on Friday, they stated cases need to drop and more individuals require to follow safety procedures before they will again advocate for further re-opening.

” Were working on a case-by-case basis until we see progress, and a drop in the numbers,” he stated. “Then, well go on and make another request, however I dont see that happening in the next week approximately.”

” I think its a continual monitoring of the circumstance,” she said. I dont believe you can state any time frame until we can get our numbers back down.”

On Friday, Wiesmans statewide masking order took result, needing Washingtonians to wear face coverings when in public, both indoors and outdoors, when physically distancing at least 6 feet from others is not possible.

In the mean time, he prompted everyone to take safety preventative measures and use a mask.

Gov. Jay Inslee and Secretary of Health John Wiesman checked out Spokane on Thursday, and the guv warned that an order comparable to the one issued in Yakima County is possible here. In Yakima County businesses can not serve customers without facial coverings.

Kuney stated she didnt have a particular date she prepared to press for re-opening again, saying it would depend on suggestions from the health officer and the hospitals, in addition to the number of brand-new cases.

” Were not going into Phase 3 anytime quickly,” Lutz said.