CORONAVIRUS

Utah Governor-Elect Spencer Cox Focuses On State Coronavirus Response

Nov 5, 2020, 5:42 PM | Updated: 10:51 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Utah Governor-elect Spencer Cox said he was focused on the COVID-19 surge as he announced members of his team to help him transition from Lieutenant Governor to Governor. He will be sworn into office on Jan. 4.

He said he understands the devastation of the virus, because he’s been one of Utah’s leaders in the response. Deidre Henderson, his lieutenant governor-elect, brings another kind of experience, because she has had COVID-19.

“I believe this state has taken this virus very seriously,” Henderson said in a press briefing Thursday on the transition to their administration.

The State Senator from Spanish Fork said her experience with coronavirus shapes the way she sees our state’s priorities.

“I don’t believe that we’ve gone in the wrong direction at all,” she said. “I think that the good people of the state of Utah need to remember that this virus is indiscriminate.”

The virus hit her hard three months ago.

“I still require some supplemental oxygen at times. My lungs are still healing from the effects of the coronavirus,” said the lieutenant governor-elect.

The coronavirus has been a long, frustrating journey for her.

“At times, it’s been a little bit scary. But, I am recovering,” Henderson said.

She is urging everyone to continue to do their part to limit the spread of the virus.

“We know that we’re contagious for a couple of days before we even develop symptoms, which is why physical distancing and mask-wearing is so important,” she said.

Henderson emphasized that it is not so much about protecting yourself from the virus, but protecting others from you.

“Making sure that you are protecting those around you is the number one thing that people can do right now,” she said.

Cox and Governor Gary Herbert recently met with federal COVID-19 task force members who told them to get ready for vaccine distribution.

“That’s going to be a very important part in the first part of the year getting that out to our frontline workers and of course to our most vulnerable,” said Cox.

He also expects more rapid testing supplies from the federal government within the next couple of weeks.

“If we could do hundreds of thousands of those tests every week we would be able to get ahead of the virus,” the governor-elect said.

The virus is not spreading very much in workplaces, schools, and shopping centers right now, he said, because we take precautions there. We need to do the same things in our homes whenever we mix with people who are not in our immediate families.

“Any time anybody comes over to your house who is not your immediate family, your cousins, your friends or neighbors, any time they come over, you have to do the same things that we do at all of these places,” he said.

That means wearing a mask and staying at least 6 feet away.

“The spread is happening in our homes, and it’s killing people, and it’s overwhelming our hospitals,” Cox said.

“This is crunch time, and the next two months are absolutely critical. We are in a dire situation and we cannot emphasize that enough,” he said. “These are the small sacrifices that we have to make to save hundreds and thousands of lives.”

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Utah Governor-Elect Spencer Cox Focuses On State Coronavirus Response