Navajo Nation reports 6 deaths, 180 new COVID-19 cases

Window Rock, Ariz. • Navajo Nation health officials on Friday reported six new deaths and 180 new cases of COVID-19.

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said the big increase in cases is partially due to increased testing.

The Navajo Department of Health says there are 1,540 known coronavirus infections across the reservation, and 58 people have died. Those don't include cases from towns that border the vast reservation that spans parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.

Tribal authorities are again enforcing a weekend curfew in effect from 8 p.m. on Friday until 5 a.m. Monday, and Nez says more stringent patrols are planned. People caught violating the curfew face up to 30 days in jail and fines up to $1,000.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is building temporary hospital beds in Gallup and Shiprock, New Mexico as well as Chinle, Arizona to care for COVID-19 patients.