LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – One day after setting a new record high, the number of patients with COVID-19 in Arkansas hospitals fell on Tuesday, as the number of active cases also fell for the third day in a row.
During a weekly briefing, Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced that the number of hospitalizations in the state fell by 32 in the last 24 hours, now sitting at 1,785. There were jumps in the numbers of COVID-positive patients needing enhanced care, though, with patients on ventilators going up 18 to 233 and patients in ICU care climbing by 22 to 515.
Hutchinson said that with the spike in cases he is asking the state general assembly to approve $4.7 million to UAMS in order for the hospital to open up 28 medical surge beds, including seven ICU beds.
The active cases count was reported as 89,572, a drop of 3,742 from the previous day. Arkansas added 7,943 new cases to its total on Tuesday, moving the state to 749,824 cases since the beginning of the pandemic.
Health officials also reported 24 deaths were added to the state tally in the last day, bringing that total to 9,556.
Data from the Arkansas Department of Health shows that when breaking COVID-19 cases down by age, almost every group is trending down over the last seven days except residents 65 and older. The cases count in that group is flat.
One of the challenges facing many Arkansas families currently is the changing guidelines in terms of masks. Hutchinson said he had not received any new information from federal officials on masks shipments from them coming to the Natural State, but the governor did not that supplies of state-procured child-sized masks should be shipped to schools in Arkansas this week.
The number of vaccine doses administered in the past 24 hours bounced back from the weekend lull, with 6,047 doses given out in the past day. The state reported 1,538,072 Arkansans have been fully immunized, with another 372,524 residents having partial immunity to the virus.