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Arizona’s top doctor discusses new Executive Order

Dr. Cara Christ also explains policy for immigrant vaccines

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - In a new executive order going into effect Friday, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey lifted occupancy restrictions for businesses throughout the state.

The new protocols come after several weeks of declining coronavirus cases across the state and the administration of more than two million vaccine doses.

Everything will stay the same besides the capacity.
 
Doctor Cara Christ addressing Gov. Ducey's new executive order in a press conference Friday afternoon.

Restaurants, fitness centers, and other public venues, including bars that serve food - will be required to enforce masks and physical distancing however the occupancy requirement will expire.

“It also allows spring training and major league sports to operate with an approved plan for mitigation strategies,” Dr. Cara Christ explains.

This means, businesses should continue making sure everyone is six feet apart but there will not be a limit on how many people are allowed in.

“We saw this most recent spike back in December in January, it wasn't necessarily the establishments or the occupancy limits that have had an impact, it was those people gathering in those small private settings where people were letting the masking and the physical distancing down. So it's a great reminder that we can't let that down, being able to lift this for our businesses as we are seeing improved metrics is a key step forward,” Dr. Christ said.
 
Meanwhile, on the vaccine front, Dr. Christ tells 13 On Your Side's Cody Lee that Yuma County public health officer, Diana Gomez, likes the idea of bringing the Johnson & Johnson vaccines to our area.

“It does provide additional opportunities it doesn't have the storage requirements, it's one shot, you know, utilizing that in, in our frontline agricultural workers that may move around, is going to be highly beneficial,” Dr. Christ said.

Due to the increase in migrants traveling across the border, we asked if migrants can be vaccinated and if there would be an effect on Yuma County residents wanting the vaccine.

“Anybody who's in Arizona and meets the criteria for getting vaccinated would be eligible and we would hope that that opportunity would be afforded to Arizona and in other places as well,” Dr. Christ answered.

Arizona’s top doctor recommends everyone get the shot as soon as it's available to you.

“We have a high number of winter visitors in the winter from other parts of the country we are a border state so we know we have day workers that go back and forth plus we have a huge agricultural community here in Arizona because of our weather and we are we do get those migrant agricultural workers that come in for the season,” she added.

There was no comment on if it would affect the availability for residents in Yuma County wanting the vaccine.

Arizona Coronavirus / Top Stories / Vaccine / Yuma County Coronavirus
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Cody Lee

Cody Lee joined 13 On Your Side and KYMA News 11 in March 2020, but he’s no stranger to Arizona. He grew up in the Phoenix area and enjoys everything Arizona has to offer.

Prior to moving to Yuma, he served as a News Video Editor at Arizona’s Family 3TV / CBS 5 in Phoenix.

Lee spent most of his life watching the news and discovering a passion for tv news journalism. After college, Lee received an opportunity in Las Vegas, Nevada at KSNV News 3 and worked on longtime local morning news program “Wake Up with the Wagners” and the #1 rated weekend evening newscasts. He spent 3 years at KSNV, before moving on to a new experience in Sin City at KLAS 8 News Now.

Cody later moved to real estate marketing, until he returned back to his hometown of Phoenix.

Lee is excited to start this new journey, as a journalist, right here in Yuma and Imperial Valley. He starts his on-air duties in the midst of the devastating Coronavirus Pandemic.

When he is not reporting on the amazing people in his communities, you can catch him enjoying a hike or spending time exploring all the great things Yuma and the Valley are known for. He also enjoys relaxing at home, reading all the latest headlines – with his tabby cat, Oliver.

You can catch him on the air Wednesday thru Friday at 6pm and 10pm on CBS 13. On the weekends, at 5pm & 10pm on KYMA News 11 and 10pm on CBS 13.

Lee hopes to bring you factual and accurate reporting on stories that are impacting the people of our beautiful communities.

You can contact Cody at cody.lee@kecytv.com.

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