Gov. Stitt says he won’t enact face mask mandate following massive surge in new COVID-19 cases

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As COVID-19 numbers continue to spike in Oklahoma, state leaders and health experts spoke out about what’s being done and what needs to be done to get Oklahoma to flatten the curve.

Gov. Kevin Stitt says Oklahomans have taken their foot off the gas when it comes to taking steps to prevent the disease and its time to get serious about the spread of COVID-19.

Stitt, along with state and private health care officials, were on hand at OU Medical Center this afternoon, talking about concerns over a number of different issues.

State Health Commissioner Dr. Lance Fry says the state is now using a system usually reserved for natural disasters to coordinate bed availability all over the state.

Health officials talked about a Pfizer vaccine possibly being used in Oklahoma as early as next month and new treatments, like Bamlanivimab, are showing promising signs on Oklahoma COVID patients. The governor and all the health care officials today stressing the need for Oklahomans to wear masks, but Stitt is still not changing his stance, saying no to a statewide mask mandate.

“It’s a personal responsibility. I want people to limit those gathering to continue to be very, very cautious over the next month. We really need to flatten this curve,” said Stitt.

“Please trust us now when we tell you wearing a mask makes a difference, and its not about a mandate. The governor, nor the government, should have to tell us to do the right thing. We know better now, so we need to do better,” said Dr. Julie Watson of INTEGRIS Health.

The governor stressed the importance of college students getting tested before they go home for Thanksgiving, saying it will be free for students at the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University.


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