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Articles written by Paul Monies

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 By Paul Monies    Regional    November 26, 2020 

After 1,600 deaths and counting, mask mandate remains flashpoint in Oklahoma

A masked Gov. Kevin Stitt walked into a roomful of masked reporters at the Oklahoma Capitol, sat down at the head of a conference table and removed his mask. Flanked by his health commissioner and a... Full story

 

Coronavirus continues march across Oklahoma as hospitalizations set record

Coronavirus hotspots emerged across the state in the past week as hospitalizations reached a new record since the pandemic began. Active cases hit 24,091 on Friday, according to the latest tally from the Oklahoma State Department of Health. That...

 

As last resort, Oklahoma quarantine orders rise amid coronavirus pandemic

Everything old is new again when it comes to battling a novel coronavirus with no cure or vaccination. Public health officials point to face masks, social distancing and good hand hygiene as pillars...

 

As last resort, Oklahoma quarantine orders rise amid coronavirus pandemic

Everything old is new again when it comes to battling a novel coronavirus with no cure or vaccination. Public health officials point to face masks, social distancing and good hand hygiene as pillars of the response to the coronavirus, along with... Full story

 

Prison infections push rural towns into weekly coronavirus hotspots

Coronavirus infections at prisons in Vinita and McAlester pushed those areas into the top hotspots of the week in Oklahoma. Other large increases in active coronavirus cases came in Chickasha, Alva and several ZIP codes in the Oklahoma City area,...

 

Five Oklahoma takeaways from the White House 'red zone' COVID-19 report

An internal White House report about states in the so-called “red zone” for COVID-19 includes Oklahoma and recommends mandating masks and closing bars and gyms in localized areas where infections are spreading rapidly. The report, obtained by...

 
 By Paul Monies    Regional    July 16, 2020

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt says he tested positive for coronavirus

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt said Wednesday that he has tested positive for coronavirus, a day after the state reported a record number of new COVID-19 cases. Stitt made the announcement in a Zoom call with reporters along with his interim Health...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    July 10, 2020

Hospitalization increase leads Integris to open its COVID-19 wings at Portland campus

A surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Oklahoma City has led Integris Baptist Medical Center to open its Portland Avenue campus to treat patients with the coronavirus. The hospital system s...

 
 By Paul Monies    Regional    July 8, 2020

Hospitalization increase leads Integris to open its COVID-19 wings at Portland campus

A surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Oklahoma City has led Integris Baptist Medical Center to open its Portland Avenue campus to treat patients with the coronavirus. The hospital system s... Full story

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    May 24, 2020

Why more women than men contract the coronavirus

Women account for about three-fourths of all COVID-19 infections among health-care workers and in nursing homes in Oklahoma, resulting in a higher proportion of women than men overall infected across...

 

What medical groups say about reopening Oklahoma's economy

In the wake of Gov. Kevin Stitt's decision to start reopening Oklahoma's economy, Oklahoma Watch reached out for reaction from top medical groups and checked the remarks from Oklahoma City and Tulsa...

 

After resisting, state decides to release number of COVID-19 cases, deaths for all cities

Weeks after mayors and other local officials asked the Oklahoma State Department of Health to release COVID-19 infections and deaths by city, the state began publishing some of that information this week. The catch? The city breakdown excluded...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    April 12, 2020

Beds: Questions of supply for all patients

When a patient with COVID-19 is brought to a hospital, they are triaged, isolated and put in a negative pressure room (if it's available), where air blows in but can't escape. Depending on the...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    April 10, 2020

Health workers: Risks of shortages and exposure

If a large COVID-19 surge comes, Oklahoma officials want to be sure there are enough doctors, nurses, aides and other health-care workers to treat the infected. That involves a lot more than... Full story

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    April 3, 2020

Oklahoma ranks 18th in nation in rate of coronavirus deaths

(March 30, 2020) – With a surge in COVID-19 deaths since last week, Oklahoma now ranks 18th highest in the nation in the rate of coronavirus deaths. Taking population into account, deaths were highe...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    March 20, 2020

Coronavirus tests remain limited, raising questions about haves and have-nots

Call it test anxiety, but not the kind you might remember from school. With a shortage of COVID-19 testing kits available at Oklahoma's state lab, public health officials are prioritizing who can get...

 
 By Paul Monies    Regional    March 8, 2020

Lawmakers push to revise laws for medical marijuana industry

Home delivery of medical marijuana, a shorter dispensary setback from schools and making the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority its own agency are among the proposals that survived last week’s first legislative deadline. But a bill banning...

 

Highlights of Stitt's State of the State address, annotated

Gov. Kevin Stitt used his second State of the State speech Monday to urge lawmakers to continue his effort to transform state government and turn Oklahoma into a "top ten state." Among the most dramat...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    January 24, 2020

How recreational Is Oklahoma's medical marijuana market?

Welcome to the wild west of weed. Eighteen months after Oklahoma voters approved medical marijuana, the state is awash in cannabis retail shops. One in 13 adult Oklahomans has a patient card. With no...

 

How recreational Is Oklahoma's medical marijuana market?

Welcome to the wild west of weed. Eighteen months after Oklahoma voters approved medical marijuana, the state is awash in cannabis retail shops. One in 13 adult Oklahomans has a patient card. With no... Full story

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    December 1, 2019

Does investigative tool cloaked in secrecy give prosecutors too much power?

In the multicounty grand jury system, Oklahoma prosecutors have a powerful tool to investigate allegations of crimes and public corruption across counties. But their power is not unlimited. A...

 

Stitt's pick for land office lacks required degree, faced lawsuits

Gov. Kevin Stitt’s pick to head the Commissioners of the Land Office lacks the advanced degree needed to become permanent secretary and has owned a company involved in legal disputes over oil and gas leases. The Legislature would have to change...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    September 1, 2019

Second Amendment backers plan tests of permitless carry law

Oklahoma Watch Backers of an approaching law allowing Oklahomans to carry a gun without training or a permit say they’re willing to test compliance with the law by showing up in certain places carrying a firearm. These so-called Second Amendment...

 

Gun deaths in Oklahoma: Trends, laws and survival

Mass shootings in Texas and Ohio over the weekend have put gun deaths and firearm laws back in the spotlight. Oklahoma's last major mass shooting event was in 1986, when 14 people were killed at an...

 
 By Paul Monies    Local    July 14, 2019

District attorneys use twin groups to push criminal justice policies

The meeting room is like so many others in Oklahoma, with a standard conference table, overhead projector and wall map. Attendees exchange small talk and grab coffee from the back of the room. There's... Full story

 

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