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Navajo Nation reports 270 new COVID-19 cases, one death

January 8, 2022 GMT

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation on Friday reported 270 new confirmed COVID-19 cases and one death related to the virus.

Tribal officials said the number of confirmed cases on the reservation now total 42,622 since the pandemic began. The death roll stands at 1,593.

The Navajo Nation Office of the President and Vice President held a special online town hall Friday to update residents on the pandemic as the omicron variant pushes case numbers higher in neighboring states and across the U.S. The reservation covers 27,000 square miles and extends into parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.

Health care workers said during the town hall that they are seeing less severe symptoms in patients who have been vaccinated.

“Our frontline warriors are pleading for all of our people to get fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and to get a booster shot if you’re eligible,” Navajo President Jonathan Nez said. “The vaccines do not guarantee that you won’t get COVID-19, but they are highly effective in preventing severe symptoms and they are saving lives every day across the country.”

Like elsewhere, Nez said the health care system on the Navajo Nation is being challenged and he urged fellow Navajos to be extra cautious.