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Research Articles

Vol. 1 No. 1 (2021): Georgetown Scientific Research Journal: Fall 2020 Issue

Policy Brief: Comparison and Recommendations for State COVID-19 Responses of New Mexico and Utah

December 7, 2020


New Mexico has seen a steady increase in SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) cases, but compared to Utah, New Mexico has kept case numbers low due to important mitigation policies passed by Governor Michelle Grisham. The goals and priorities of each state’s governor contributed to the policies and severity of restrictions in each state. Governor Grisham’s mask, mass gathering, and interstate quarantine policies are restrictions that she deems necessary in order to mitigate the spread and save lives. Governor Gary Herbert has valued economic recovery as opposed to virus mitigation, which is reflected in his lenient restrictions. In the immediate future, Governor Cox, Governor Herbert’s successor as of January, should enact the same mask, mass gathering, and interstate quarantine policies as New Mexico; both states should then reassess the list of states that people need to quarantine from, given that 21 states hit records for 7-day average of COVID-19 cases, as of October 11, in order to get transmission under control. Additionally, if COVID-19 transmission is slowed, mass gathering restrictions can be reassessed to allow for larger gatherings but should stay tightly restricted until that point.