PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – Arizona Republican Sen. Martha McSally says the Trump administration “has taken the right steps to protect Americans” from the rapidly spreading coronavirus.

Martha McSally on Good Morning Arizona (March 13, 2020)

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When she stopped by "Good Morning Arizona" Friday, she talked about the frustration people have expressed regarding testing, saying she shares it. She also pointed out that COVID-19 is a new virus, and said the government has been working closely with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), both have which have received increased funding in recent years.
 
“They (the CDC and NIH) built those tests pretty quickly, but the distribution and the ability for people to get tests by their doctor is one that’s not happening fast enough from my view," she said. "It’s not adequate that our government can’t respond as fast as the South Korean government."
 
While testing by public health is the only option right now, private labs like LabCorp and Sonora Quest are ramping up their testing capabilities, she said.
 
Last week, she voted to support a bill making more than $8 billion in emergency funding to fight the coronavirus pandemic in Arizona and throughout the country. “We need to be prepared, not panicked,” she said. “The Trump Administration has taken the right steps to protect Americans and this funding helps bolster those efforts.”

In addition to testing, she reiterated the precautions what the CDC has been saying about who is most at risk.

  • People over 65
  • People with preexisting respiratory issues
  • People with compromised immune systems

She said this vulnerable population needs to take some extra precautions "just like with seasonal influenza" and touched on the basic things everybody needs to do to stem the spread of COVID-19.

  • Wash your hands
  • Social distancing
  • Stay home if you exhibit symptoms

She said that last one can pose a challenge to many people, particularly in economic terms, which is why assistance is on the way. The first priority will be to help small businesses, families and people who live paycheck-to-paycheck weather the pandemic and mitigate economic distress.

McSally was appointed by Gov. Doug Ducey to fill the seat of the late Sen. John McCain after losing the November 2018 election to Sen. Kyrsten Sinema. She is running to keep that seat and will likely face Democrat Mark Kelly come November.

Friday's "Good Morning Arizona" interview with McSally focused on the coronavirus pandemic with the upcoming election barely mentioned. "There'll be time for campaigning later," she said.

 

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