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No COVID-19 deaths on Navajo Nation for fourth time in five days, hospitals crowded statewide

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The Navajo Nation on Thursday reported 78 more COVID-19 cases, but no additional deaths for the fourth time in the past five days.

The latest numbers pushed the tribe’s total cases since the pandemic began to 40,334. The known death toll remains at 1,557.

Tribal President Jonathan Nez has again called for everyone on the vast reservation to get a booster shot and wear masks.

The reservation covers 27,000 square miles (70,000 square kilometers) and extends into parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.

Meanwhile, Arizona state health officials say the availability of hospital beds has sunk to the lowest level since the pandemic began.

The state's coronavirus dashboard reports that only 4% of inpatient beds and of intensive care unit beds statewide were available as of Wednesday.

The current hospital crowding is due not only to large numbers of COVID-19 patients, most of whom were unvaccinated, but also many non-virus patients needing treatment for other conditions.

The state's dashboard on Thursday also reported 3,663 additional confirmed COVID-19 cases and 75 more deaths.