white house

Twitter / @GovStitt

Despite clear guidance from the CDC and a top White House coronavirus official against such behavior due to the devastating surge in COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations, Gov. Kevin Stitt said Thursday he plans to attend a college football game and celebrate Thanksgiving with members of his family outside his immediate household.

"I'm going to be with my family over Thanksgiving. I'm going to do it safely. I'm going to be with my parents. I think Oklahomans should be with their loved ones over Thanksgiving," Stitt said at a press briefing at the state Capitol. 

Twitter / @VP

The Trump administration says Oklahomans must "act now" to get a handle on the coronavirus as hospitalizations hit their highest level ever and the state's COVID-19 death rate reaches the federal "red zone."

White House coronavirus task force

The Trump administration is calling on Gov. Kevin Stitt to increase efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Oklahoma as the state's pandemic numbers grow worse.

White House coronavirus task force

One week after the release of a White House coronavirus task force report stating that many of Oklahoma's recent COVID-19 deaths were preventable, which provoked a response from a spokesperson for Gov. Kevin Stitt disputing that as an "editorial opinion," a new report recommends the state ramp up its coronavirus response or risk further deaths.

White House coronavirus task force

The latest White House coronavirus task force report for Oklahoma, dated Sunday but released by the state health department Wednesday, shows the state climbing the rankings to have some of the worst numbers in the country for two COVID-19 metrics.

Oklahoma State University

As some colleges and universities across the country have become hotbeds for new COVID-19 outbreaks since welcoming students back to campus for fall semester, Gov. Kevin Stitt on Tuesday stressed that students at Oklahoma institutions should remain on campus if they become infected.

Facebook / Governor Kevin Stitt

In a Thursday press conference at the Capitol, Gov. Kevin Stitt acknowledged that hundreds of Oklahomans continue to be admitted to hospitals with COVID-19, but touted advancements in medical treatments for those who become infected.

White House coronavirus task force

The latest report for Oklahoma from the White House coronavirus task force once again recommends a statewide mask mandate, points to Arkansas as a model for virus response, and warns that nursing home policies and procedures must be altered to keep residents safe.

Tom Holland-Wikimedia

Oklahoma House Democrats on Thursday called on Gov. Kevin Stitt to set up a new state COVID task force.

The minority caucus wants a bipartisan group led by public health experts that regularly briefs the public, including on recommendations it makes to the governor.

An existing governor’s task force that has met since March does not appear to meet those criteria.

Andrea Hanks / White House

Gov. Kevin Stitt on Thursday obfuscated the circumstances surrounding next week’s visit from a key member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force.

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that Oklahoma is among six states Dr. Deborah Birx will visit to provide "aggressive, tailored and targeted guidance" on handling the coronavirus.

Stitt described her stop differently at a news conference.

"She’s making some stops in Iowa and a few other states. And so, we’ve invited her to Oklahoma," Stitt said.

Facebook / Governor Kevin Stitt

Despite recommendations from the Trump administration that the state of Oklahoma implement far stricter restrictions to combat the coronavirus, a spokesperson for Gov. Kevin Stitt said Friday that they're just that -- recommendations.

"The Governor’s office followed up after the Task Force’s latest report and the White House confirmed that these are not mandates and that the State is not out of compliance with any federal orders," said Baylee Lakey, the governor's communications director, in an emailed statement.

The Oklahoman

A U.S. House special committee wants to know why Oklahoma is not following recommendations on the coronavirus made privately by the White House.

Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington

Oklahoma has already begun reopening following a plan by Governor Kevin Stitt, but a team of health researchers estimate that the state is still over 50 days away from the earliest date when it would be safe to ease restrictions intended to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The White House has told governors their leadership is critical in testing for coronavirus and provided a map showing that Oklahoma is one of four states with the lowest testing capacity in the United States.