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Navajo Nation reports no COVID-related deaths for 3rd day

August 31, 2021 GMT

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation on Tuesday reported 54 new COVID-19 cases, but no additional deaths for the third consecutive day.

The latest numbers pushed the tribe’s total to 32,600 coronavirus cases since the pandemic began more than a year ago.

The known death total remained at 1,403.

Based on cases from Aug. 13-16, the Navajo Department of Health has issued an advisory notice for 36 communities due to uncontrolled spread of COVID-19.

Tribal President Jonathan Nez has said all Navajo Nation executive branch employees will need to be fully vaccinated against the virus that causes COVID-19 by the end of September or be required to submit to regular testing.

The new rules apply to full, part-time and temporary employees, including those working for tribal enterprises like utilities, shopping centers and casinos.

Any worker who does not show proof of vaccination by Sept. 29 must be tested every two weeks or face discipline.

The Navajo Nation reservation is the country’s largest at 27,000 square miles (70,000 square kilometers) and it covers parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.