No link between COVID-19 case spike, more hospitalizations, Arizona lawmaker says

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A state lawmaker says a study he commissioned shows there isn't a correlation between increasing COVID-19 infection rates and the number of people who are hospitalized with the virus, according to the Arizona Capitol Times.

Arizona Rep. Mark Finchem, a Republican from Oro Valley, said that his study shows that fewer than 10 percent of people who test positive for COVID-19 are hospitalized. He also claims that the hospitalization rate has "fallen dramatically" since its apex on June 16. That means there's no reason to believe that a dramatic hike in coronavirus cases in the state will lead to more hospitalizations, he said.

But Arizona's former health director, Will Humble, said Mr. Finchem's report, prepared by Anchor-Helm, a company owned by Mr. Fincham's brother, doesn't account for the delay in reporting the number of hospitalizations. And there's just not a downward trend in hospitalizations, Mr. Humble said.

While acknowledging a reporting gap, Mr. Finchem accused the state health department of concealing raw numbers so lawmakers can't validate them and said that the state's data dashboard is skewed.

No one from the governor's office or the state health department would comment, according to the Times.

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