Coronavirus in Arkansas: 439 new cases, hospitalizations at all-time high

Coronavirus

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – Governor Asa Hutchinson announced 439 new cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas at his daily press conference on Monday.

In his first press conference since Friday, Hutchinson announced that the number of patients hospitalized due to the virus in the state has spiked to an all-time high to 337 (+52 since Friday), including 81 patients on ventilators (+6 since yesterday).

Gov. Hutchinson reported 3615 tests performed in Arkansas over the last 24 hours, noting that the number was down, likely due to the holiday weekend. The percent-positive rate over the last 24 hours was above the recommended 10 percent by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Hutchinson reported.

The 439 new cases announced today include:

  • Washington County – 77 cases
  • Pulaski County – 46 cases
  • Yell County – 36 cases
  • Benton County – 36 cases
  • Faulkner County – 19 cases
  • Sebastian County – 18 cases
  • Crittenden County – 16 cases

There were no other counties with more than ten new cases over the last 24 hours, according to Dr. Nate Smith, Secretary of the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH).

Smith said

There are now 6,127 cases considered active by the ADH, including:

  • 5554 in the general community
  • 456 in correctional facilities
  • 117 in nursing homes

Hutchinson announced five additional deaths due to COVID-19 on Monday, raising the death toll in Arkansas to 292.

Dr. Nate Smith, Secretary of the ADH, said the number of patients considered recovered in the state rose by 701 (17,834 total) over the last 24 hours, resulting in a net decrease in the number of active cases in Arkansas.

Governor Hutchinson announced on Monday that the state has entered a $20 million contract with General Dynamics to assist with contact tracing efforts, adding 350 employees set to start this week.

He said the state is set to request another $20 million in funding to add 350 more contact tracers, which, along with the 80 contact-tracing personnel at the ADH

“This is a huge increase in our investment there, as well as our capacity,” Hutchinson said. “It doesn’t mean it’s going to be perfect in the fall. We’ll continue to monitor that, but those are going to be big investments that we’re making.”

Hutchinson announced he is increasing the testing goal for the month of July.

He planned to test 6% of Arkansans, 180,000, but now he has upped that number to 200,000 by July 31.

For more information on the state’s response to COVID-19, visit https://www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programs-services/topics/novel-coronavirus.

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