Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

White Mountain Apache Tribe Sees Rise in COVID-19 Cases


November 15, 2021

White Mountain Apache Tribe Chairwoman Gwendena Lee-Gatewood

White Mountain Apache Tribe, like much of the U.S. right now, is seeing a surge in COVID-19 cases. At the time of this writing, the tribe has 353 new COVID-19 cases and are in their second weekend of a lockdown.

"We've seen a spike in cases mainly due to gatherings," Gwendena Lee-Gatewood, Tribal Chairwoman of the White Mountain Apache Tribe, told Native News Online. "I think the U.S. in general, everyone has gotten a little relaxed--'oh I don't need to wear a mask. I don't need to wipe this down.' The virus is moving. I know everyone is fatigued. I get fatigued of wearing masks and being careful, but we have to continue that practice."

Derrick Leslie, Policy Unit Coordinator for White Mountain Apache Tribe Emergency Operations Center (EOC), says 68 percent of those in the community 12 years old and older have been fully vaccinated for the last month. Still, about 10 percent of COVID-19 hospitalizations are fully vaccinated people as of last week. All are considered breakthrough cases.


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