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WASHINGTON — Vice President Mike Pence says the nation is in a much better position to fight coronavirus than when the pandemic started months ago.

Speaking to the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, the vice president praised advanced therapeutics and efforts of the American people, led by President Trump’s direction and health care workers. He said 33 million people have been tested for COVID-19 so far.

Pence says added help is coming to Arizona and possibly other states where the virus is surging again.

“A team deployed by FEMA of 62 disaster medical assistance personnel are on the ground in Arizona,” Pence said. “We’re also currently processing a request from Texas and are in consultation with other states.”

Pence will visit Arizona today.

Pence said 12 states currently have both rising cases and positivity rates. But the good news he says is the number of people dying from the virus is going down.

“The precipitous decline in fatalities is a tribute to the healthcare workers in this country and the cooperation and compassion of the American people,” he added.

Over 2.5 million Americans have contracted the COVID-19 strand of coronavirus out of those 33 million that have been tested nationwide. Over 126,000 have died. In Indiana, only 9-percent of the Hoosiers out of the 484,000 that have been tested have tested positive for the virus. 2,448 Hoosiers have died.