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Public Affairs
Resources for Arkansas COVID-19

The latest Arkansas COVID-19 information and resources.

COVID-19 Updates

8/25/21

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

There have been 2,781 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 441,246 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 15,695 from last Wednesday. The total of 23,587 active cases is down 201 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 6,774 and increased by 209 since last Wednesday. There are 1,368 hospitalized patients, down 4 since last Wednesday, with 354 on ventilators, up 28 from last Wednesday and a new record.

 

Yesterday, 9,561 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in August to 232,566. Additionally, there were 3,221 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 124,816. The 7-day average for combined tests is 10,682, down 971 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 3,406,450 doses of vaccine, an increase of 175,280 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,616,162 inoculations have been given (76.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 68,723 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,527,064 people or 59.7% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,178,475 or 46.1%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 9th in new cases and 4th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 8th in current hospitalizations, and 49th in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

 

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • As of Tuesday, there are no available ICU beds for COVID patients in Arkansas. There are some ICU beds for non-COVID patients, but those are not appropriate for COVID patients. COVID has put enormous strains on hospitals across the state. Please get vaccinated to help hospitals deal with the spread of COVID. Additional beds have been brought online in the past few weeks and more will be available in the coming weeks.

 

  • The Pfizer vaccine has been fully approved by the Food and Drug Administration and it is safe for all those eligible. COVID vaccine booster shots have been approved by the FDA for eight months after their second dose, although the soonest that those eligible will be able to receive them will be around September 20.

 

  • The Arkansas Poison Control Center has put out a warning for humans not to use veterinary-grade Ivermectin to treat COVID as it is intended for use for livestock. Please do not take any drugs designed for livestock and do not take drugs without a doctor’s prescription or recommendation.

 

  • The average age of hospitalizations for COVID continues to be around 55, which has stayed consistent over the last four months, after having been around 64 late last year.

 

  • Since February of this year, 91% of cases, 92% of hospitalizations, and 91% of deaths are among those who are not fully vaccinated.

 

  • Over 500,000 high filtration masks have been sent to schools to help children stay safe during the school day. That number includes 325,000 masks designed for use by smaller children. Of the 262 school districts across the state, 118 have enacted a mask policy, which covers more than half the school children in the state. Eighty-seven school districts have declined to have a mask policy, while the other school districts have not yet set a mask policy. The University of Arkansas system, Arkansas State, Arkansas Tech, and the University of Central Arkansas have all enacted a mask policy.

 

  • With the full approval of the Pfizer vaccine, Governor Hutchinson expects that more private businesses will require that their employees get vaccinated. He supports private businesses doing what they feel is right for their companies. There is no expectation for a change for Arkansas to allow a requirement for vaccinations.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Individuals eligible for booster shots must wait until 8 months after they received their second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines to receive their next shot. Even after the state expects the availability of booster doses on September 20, most people will need to wait to be eligible for the booster shots to ensure their 8-month requirement.

 

  • COVID patients fill just under 50% of all ICU beds across the state. Unlike with the previous surge in January, there are no beds available and the share of COVID patients also was not as high as it is now.

 

  • Patients at high risk should get vaccinated and if they do contract COVID, they should get monoclonal antibody therapy. These have helped to decrease the number of hospitalizations by 70% to 80%.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • There have been around 300 more cases at schools this week compared to last week. This is not unexpected, and no schools have had to make any adjustments to on-site instruction.

Dr. Ivy Pfeffer: Deputy Commissioner, Arkansas Department of Education

  • Vaccination clinics are taking place in schools across the state. In Rogers, 106 people were vaccinated at a clinic, 149 were vaccinated at a clinic at a school in Texarkana, and 59 were vaccinated in Earle.

8/18/21

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

There have been 2,685 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 425,551 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 14,719 from last Wednesday. The total of 23,788 active cases is down 427 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 6,565 and increased by 199 since last Wednesday. There are 1,372 hospitalized patients, down 74 since last Wednesday, with 326 on ventilators, up 30 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 7,549 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in August to 157,713. Additionally, there were 2,420 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 85,518. The 7-day average for combined tests is 10,810, up 559 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 3,231,170 doses of vaccine, an increase of 162,850 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,547,439 inoculations have been given (78.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 78,085 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,495,124 people or 58.5% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,140,557 or 44.6%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 5th in new cases and 3rd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 6th in current hospitalizations, and 50th in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

8/11/21

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

There have been 2,920 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 410,832 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 16,371 from last Wednesday. The total of 24,215 active cases is up 3,656 from last Wednesday and is a new record. Total deaths are at 6,366 and increased by 136 since last Wednesday. There are 1,446 hospitalized patients, up 214 since last Wednesday, with 296 on ventilators, up 36 from last Wednesday. Both hospitalizations and ventilator use are also records.

 

Yesterday, 8,704 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in August to 89,482. Additionally, there were 2,569 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 45,463. The 7-day average for combined tests is 10,251, up 1,475 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 3,068,320 doses of vaccine, an increase of 164,630 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,469,354 inoculations have been given (80.5% of available doses). This represents an increase of 71,522 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,450,509 people or 56.7% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,105,696 or 43.2%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 4th in new cases and 2nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 5th in current hospitalizations, and 51st in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • As of August 13, 2020, 12% of active COVID cases were among those 18 and younger. On January 11, 2021, it was 14%, and it is now 19%.

 

  • Since February 1, fully vaccinated Arkansans are 8.1% of cases, 6.9% of hospitalizations, and 8.1% of deaths.

 

  • Only 27,000 of the 627,000 recipients of traditional Medicaid have been fully vaccinated, which is only 4.3%. One approach that Arkansas is taking to handle this deficiency is that Arkansas is increasing the reimbursement rate for physicians for vaccinations from $40 to $100. Governor Hutchinson is also recommending that all doctors reach out to encourage their Medicaid patients to get vaccinated.

 

  • The Arkansas Department of Education has started a marketing campaign called “Stop the hesitation, get the vaccination” to encourage vaccinations at schools. This will attempt to increase the amount of vaccine clinics at schools across the state, as well as provide high filtration masks to schools.

 

  • Arkansas is working with the hospital association to open up as many ICU and hospital beds to handle the current increase. Additionally, the legislature has worked to allow American Rescue Plan Act funds to help increase staffing at hospitals which will help staff more beds in Arkansas. A team from the federal Department of Health and Human Services and Federal Emergency Management Agency came to Arkansas to help evaluate if there was more that could be done to increase the availability of hospital beds. Arkansas is working to implement their suggestions, including making monoclonal antibody therapy more available at hospitals as well as giving hospitals $1,000 per bed to help fund therapy through the American Rescue Plan Act funds.

 

  • On Monday, there were 8 ICU beds available in the state, and only a few more were available on Tuesday. Children’s Hospital also has very limited access to ICU beds. Arkansas is in a worse situation now with ICU beds than in January. The Veterans Administration ICU beds are outside the current COVIDComm system. Patients are being moved around the state as beds become available to include other Memphis area hospitals for patients in West Memphis.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson is engaging outside counsel to handle the challenge to the mask mandate ban, due to an inherent conflict of interest at the Attorney General’s office. More information will become available on that aspect of the case in the coming days.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson applauds schools that have taken steps to implement mask mandates if they deem them useful, but does not support cities, counties, or the state implementing a mask mandate. Vaccinations will stop the pandemic, and schools should be able to implement mask mandates as children under 12 cannot be vaccinated.

 

  • Arkansas will not be implementing an additional $100 incentive encouraged by President Biden as previous incentive programs in Arkansas have been ineffective.

 

  • The Arkansas Center for Health Improvement put out a press release urging all schools and colleges to require masks for the next 30 days as well as suggesting that they delay the start of the school year. Governor Hutchinson has talked with both Dr. Romero and Secretary Key and he is not favor of delaying the school year as children under 12 will continue to not be able to be vaccinated.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson had an unscheduled call on Monday to discuss the Community Conversations about COVID as well as other issues related to COVID in Arkansas. President Biden also indicated that the Food and Drug Administration is looking to make a final full approval for the vaccination within the next three weeks.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Among those Arkansans 12 to 18, 36% have been at least partially vaccinated, and 20% have been fully vaccinated. There have been significant increases in cases and hospitalizations among those children. There has already been one COVID outbreak at a school in Arkansas, and unless more students get vaccinated and those who can’t be vaccinated wear masks, it is likely we will see more outbreaks.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • School guidance has been updated to reflect the current CDC recommendations on masks. Although the state cannot put in place a mask mandate for schools, the Department of Education is keeping school districts up to date on the status of the court case challenging the law banning mask mandates in public schools.

 

  • The “Stop the hesitation, get the vaccination” campaign will be a continuation of many efforts, including social media efforts, to target unvaccinated students and providing information for parents to assuage concerns about the safety of the vaccines.

 

  • Masks for adults are available for schools; however, masks for younger children are limited due to the supply chain. The state is looking to spend additional funds to buy more child-sized masks.

8/4/21

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

There have been 2,838 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 394,461 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 14,735 from last Wednesday. The total of 20,559 active cases is up 4,758 from last Wednesday and is a new record. Total deaths are at 6,230 and increased by 131 since last Wednesday. There are 1,232 hospitalized patients, up 168 since last Wednesday, with 260 on ventilators, up 51 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 7,665 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in August to 18,249. Additionally, there were 2,870 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 10,266. The 7-day average for combined tests is 8,776, up 556 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,903,690 doses of vaccine, an increase of 84,830 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,397,832 inoculations have been given (82.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 85,688 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,402,174 people or 54.8% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,080,557 or 42.3%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 3rd in new cases and 1st in new deaths over the last 7 days, 3rd in current hospitalizations, and 52nd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

 

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Fourteen counties have hit more than 50% of their population vaccinated.

 

  • Since January 1 of this year, only 4.7% of all cases, 5.4% of all hospitalizations, and 3.0% of all deaths are among those who have been vaccinated. As of January 11, the height of the pandemic, 20% of all hospitalizations were COVID positive patients, 41.2% of ICU admissions were COVID patients, and 54.8% of all ventilator usage were COVID patients. As of August 3, 17.4% of all hospitalizations, 39.8% of all ICU admissions, and 50.3% of all ventilator usage were COVID patients. This is getting to another stress point for hospitals here in Arkansas.

 

  • The Arkansas General Assembly met and affirmed Governor Hutchinson’s most recent declaration of a public health emergency. Additionally, Governor Hutchinson is calling the General Assembly into a special session to ensure that the legislature gives the executive branch the ability to opt out of the expanded unemployment benefits after a court ruling said that was illegal. Governor Hutchinson is also calling on the legislature to allow school districts to have mask mandates if they choose, as many students are not eligible for vaccinations and thus have no real protection against COVID.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson regrets signing the bill that banned localities putting in place mask mandates and would prefer that the legislature makes this change for schools rather than the courts striking down the entire law.

 

  • The eviction moratorium ended this past weekend. Funding still exists to help renters pay their rent. There is more than enough to help more people and they are encouraged to contact the state for rental assistance.

 

  • Contact tracing is still happening, and the state has been able to keep up with the current case counts.

 

  • Although Tyson Foods has announced they will require all employees to be vaccinated by November 1, Governor Hutchinson does not encourage other businesses to have that requirement but does encourage companies to continue to help their employees get vaccinated through things like paid time off and vaccine clinics.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • As of August 1, nearly 19% of all active cases are among children under 18. More than half of that number is among children under 12 who are not eligible for vaccination. Between April and July, there has been a 517% increase in cases among children under 18, with almost a 690% increase in cases among children under 12. There has been a 270% increase in hospitalizations among children, and 58% of children hospitalized in July with COVID are under 12. ICU admissions have increased by 275% and 20% of those ICU patients are under 12.

 

  • Among children between 12 and 18, 32% have received at least one dose, and 18% have been fully vaccinated. These numbers need to increase, and Dr. Romero recommends that all children going to school wear masks.

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • Ready to Learn guidelines for the 2021-2022 school year have been released. The Department of Education has been working with school districts to prepare for the coming school year, ensuring that funding is available for recommended improvements. They are also working to encourage vaccinations among children who are eligible.

7/28/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,703 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 379,726 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 11,206 from last Wednesday. The total of 15,801 active cases is up 3,898 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 6,099 and increased by 79 since last Wednesday. There are 1,064 hospitalized patients, up 216 since last Wednesday, with 209 on ventilators, up 53 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 7,695 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in July to 152,036. Additionally, there were 2,149 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 80,931. The 7-day average for combined tests is 8,220, up 2,156 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,818,860 doses of vaccine, an increase of 55,700 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,312,144 inoculations have been given (82.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 65,978 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,342,881 people or 52.5% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,051,134 or 41.1%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 3rd in new cases and 1st in new deaths over the last 7 days, 3rd in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

7/21/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,459 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 368,466 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 8,208 from last Wednesday. The total of 11,903 active cases is up 3,099 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 6,020 and increased by 43 since last Wednesday. There are 848 hospitalized patients, up 201 since last Wednesday, with 156 on ventilators, up 53 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 5,856 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in July to 96,276. Additionally, there were 1,360 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 48,539. The 7-day average for combined tests is 6,021, up 1,032 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,763,160 doses of vaccine, an increase of 24,780 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,246,166 inoculations have been given (81.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 49,720 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,291,928 people or 50.5% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,034,033 or 40.4%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 5th in new cases and 2nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 4th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of yesterday afternoon.

7/14/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,309 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 360,258 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 7,163 from last Wednesday. The total of 8,804 active cases is up 3,612 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 5,977 and increased by 44 since last Wednesday. There are 647 hospitalized patients, up 215 since last Wednesday, with 103 on ventilators, up 23 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 5,143 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in July to 53,281. Additionally, there were 1,315 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 24,833. The 7-day average for combined tests is 4,974, up 1,707 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,738,380 doses of vaccine, an increase of 14,340 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,196,446 inoculations have been given (80.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 34,229 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,255,301 people or 49.1% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,019,387 or 39.9%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 1st in new cases and 7th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 3rd in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

7/9/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,000 positive cases since yesterday for a total of 353,095 cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 3,710 from last Wednesday. The total of 5,192 active cases is up 1,429 from last Wednesday. Total deaths are at 5,933 and increased by 24 since last Wednesday. There are 432 hospitalized patients, up 107 since last Wednesday, with 80 on ventilators, up 5 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,494 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in July to 16,307. Additionally, there were 921 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 5,606. The 7-day average for combined tests is 3,230, down 15 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,724,040 doses of vaccine, an increase of 17,190 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,162,217 inoculations have been given (79.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 27,889 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,232,351 people or 48.2% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 1,006,100 or 39.3%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 1st in new cases and 3rd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 3rd in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Bradley County has exceeded the goal of 50% of their population being fully vaccinated. Other counties are close as well.

 

  • The increase in hospitalizations on Monday was 55, the highest daily increase in hospitalizations since the vaccines became available.

 

  • Although there are more than 1 million Arkansans vaccinated, it is not enough to protect those who are not vaccinated. While Arkansas was beating COVID in April, it has rebounded here for a variety of reasons. The main reason is the Delta variant, which is over 50% of the cases in Arkansas now. It is more transmissible than other variants, but the vaccines are still very effective at preventing serious cases of COVID even against the Delta variant.

 

  • The average age of hospitalizations in Arkansas has gone from the low-60s in January of this year to the mid-50s in June. Deaths as a result of COVID went from 78 in November of last year to 66 in June. Vaccines have been very effective at preventing hospitalizations and deaths among those vaccinated.

 

  • Arkansas is calling upon employers to encourage their workers to get vaccinated, including offering paid time off to get vaccinated as well as offering help setting up clinics at employers that need it.

 

  • Arkansas will start hosting Community COVID Conversations, a series of discussions about the COVID vaccine, and it will provide opportunities to discuss the vaccine with healthcare and community leaders. The first of these will be held Thursday, July 8 at 6pm at the Veterans Park Event Center in Cabot. The Governor will focus on the areas that have the lowest vaccination rates, such as Texarkana and the northeast.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson does not expect to see a third wave like the earlier waves of COVID due to the large number of Arkansans being vaccinated.

 

  • If adults get vaccinated, then there is not going to be as much of a problem for students to go back to school in the fall. The Governor hopes that the summer camp in Searcy that had to send their children home is an exception and not a sign of what will happen during the school year. Testing is available both before, during, and after to help discover cases at camps.

 

  • There are some myths about the COVID vaccine that need to be explained, such as that it has no effect on fertility for women and that it is not like the flu shot which does not always protect you from the flu strain that year. Additionally, fears that the vaccine only has emergency use authorization means that when the FDA gives final approval for the COVID vaccine, it will also help encourage vaccinations.

 

Randy Zook: President/CEO of the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce

  • One of the largest reported concerns about getting vaccinated is the loss of income due to side effects of the vaccine. The American Rescue Plan includes a provision for 100% reimbursement for paid time off due to the vaccine for any employer with fewer than 500 employees, which requires some basic IRS paperwork.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • The CDC says that the Delta variant accounts for more than a quarter of the new cases in the country. The Delta variant is 30 to 50 times more transmissible and has double the risk of hospitalization than the Alpha variant. The vaccine is the only way to protect against the Delta variant, as just having had COVID before does not help. Children also have no way to protect against the Delta variant as they cannot be vaccinated yet.

6/30/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 378 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 271,751 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 1,766 from last Wednesday. There have been 308 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 77,634 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 1,050 from last Wednesday. There are 2,382 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 1,381 active probable cases. The total of 3,763 active cases is up 1,042 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,695 confirmed and 1,214 probable—increased by 22 since last Wednesday. There are 325 hospitalized patients, up 46 since last Wednesday, with 75 on ventilators, up 8 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 3,209 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in June to 69,083. Additionally, there were 796 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 42,391. The 7-day average for combined tests is 3,079, up 300 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,706,850 doses of vaccine, an increase of 18,790 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,134,328 inoculations have been given (78.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 38,755 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,215,457 people or 47.5% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 993,471 or 38.8%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 3rd in new cases and 6th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 3rd in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • With the July 4 holiday this weekend, please take precautions about the potential spread of COVID, especially with the spread of the Delta variant here in Arkansas. If you are not vaccinated, please social distance and wear a mask.

 

  • Every week, nursing homes across the country report staff and resident vaccination rates. As of this week, 78.5% of residents and 57% of staff have been vaccinated. Two facilities, Highlands Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Bella Vista and Colonel Glenn Health and Rehab in Little Rock, both have 100% of their staff vaccinated.

 

  • According to state calculations, 39% of all Arkansans and 52.4% of the adult population have received at least one vaccine dose. The vaccination rates for the eligible population varies widely from 48.9% in Bradley, 48.09% in Desha, 47.13% in Washington, 46.77% in Pulaski, and 46.51% in Benton down to 27.52% in Calhoun, 27.18% in Lafayette, 27.07% in Lincoln, 24.48% in Fulton, and 18.56% in Miller Counties. Some of the low numbers are believed to be people who were vaccinated in another state, and the Department of Health is working to ensure that everyone who was vaccinated in another state is counted.

 

  • As of Monday, June 28, 90.5% of all active cases were not fully vaccinated. Since January 26, of the 3,765 Arkansans who have been hospitalized, 98.3% were not vaccinated, and of the 988 deaths, 99.6% were not vaccinated. Vaccinating Arkansans is the safest and quickest way out of the pandemic.

 

  • The reason for not releasing testing, case counts, and vaccination rates on the weekend is that other states have also shifted to that schedule, and it also lessens the workload on staff that have been working very hard for more than a year to present these numbers.

 

  • The vaccine incentives have not been effective in Arkansas and will be winding down as they have not increased vaccination rates enough.

 

  • Much of the current pressure on the healthcare system is a result of people having delayed treatment during COVID and now needing care. COVID is a small part of the current stress. There is excess capacity for COVID cases.

 

  • Students who are preparing to go back to school this fall will be better off from a mental health standpoint at school than another remote year. Staff and older students should get vaccinated to help protect younger students who are not eligible to be vaccinated.

 

Dr. Cam Patterson: Chancellor of UAMS, and on Winter COVID Task Force

 

  • Arkansas case and severe cases have been increasing over the past few weeks. With the increase, it is possible that Arkansas could be seeing the beginning of a third surge in COVID.

 

  • Ventilator usage has tripled over the past eight weeks. Over the past six weeks, four patients who have been COVID positive have required heart lung bypass for treatment. That includes patients in their 20s. The increase in cases and severe cases among younger Arkansans is a result of a variety of issues including that seniors tend to be far more vaccinated, younger people still believe that they are not threatened by COVID, and the increasing spread of the Delta variant.

 

  • The first case of the Delta variant was discovered in Arkansas on May 1, around 25% of the current cases are the Delta variant, and within a week or two, they expect it to be over half the cases in Arkansas. The Delta variant is 70% more contagious than the main strain, hits younger patients harder, and causes more severe cases as well. This is not losing your sense of smell and a bad case of the flu, it is immediately having to come to the hospital and being put on a ventilator, even with no other underlying conditions.

 

  • There are hundreds of cases of people in the hospital due to COVID and zero cases of people being hospitalized due to complications from the COVID vaccine. The vaccine is safe and extremely effective.

 

  • Healthcare workers have been working for almost 18 months with very few breaks. If there is another wave as large as the winter wave, it will severely stress the system, and there may not be the resiliency to overcome that again.

6/23/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 258 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 269,985 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 1,258 from last Wednesday. There have been 131 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 76,584 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 654 from last Wednesday. There are 1,767 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 954 active probable cases. The total of 2,721 active cases is up 470 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,674 confirmed and 1,213 probable—increased by 20 since last Wednesday. There are 279 hospitalized patients, up 68 since last Wednesday, with 67 on ventilators, up 17 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,549 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in June to 50,129. Additionally, there were 486 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 28,041. The 7-day average for combined tests is 2,672, down 28 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,688,060 doses of vaccine, an increase of 13,940 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,095,573 inoculations have been given (78.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 31,883 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,195,234 people or 46.7% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 972,998 or 38.0%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 5th in new cases and 8th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 2nd in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

6/16/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 197 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 268,727 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 1,077 from last Wednesday. There have been 91 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 75,930 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 653 from last Wednesday. There are 1,434 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 817 active probable cases. The total of 2,251 active cases is up 592 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,657 confirmed and 1,210 probable—increased by 13 since last Wednesday. There are 211 hospitalized patients, down 5 since last Wednesday, with 50 on ventilators, up 10 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,155 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in June to 33,821. Additionally, there were 764 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 17,589. The 7-day average for combined tests is 2,584, down 214 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,674,120 doses of vaccine, an increase of 10,820 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,063,690 inoculations have been given (77.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 36,745 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,180,802 people or 46.2% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 954,054 or 37.3%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 7th in new cases and 11th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 13th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

6/9/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 128 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 267,650 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 794 from last Wednesday. There have been 73 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 75,277 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 441 from last Wednesday. There are 1,093 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 566 active probable cases. The total of 1,659 active cases is up 1 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,646 confirmed and 1,208 probable—increased by 19 since last Wednesday. There are 216 hospitalized patients, up 26 since last Wednesday, with 40 on ventilators, up 3 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,206 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in June to 15,990. Additionally, there were 479 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 7,467. The 7-day average for combined tests is 2,383, down 65 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,663,300 doses of vaccine, an increase of 19,580 from last Wednesday. A total of 2,026,945 inoculations have been given (76.1% of available doses). This represents an increase of 40,138 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,165,657 people or 45.6% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 930,652 or 36.4%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 19th in new cases and 18th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 19th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • School-aged children and teachers who are fully vaccinated are not required to quarantine following an exposure to COVID and can continue attending school and participating in extracurricular activities. This also applies for higher education as well. This change will help minimize education loss due to exposure to COVID, as students and teachers will be able to stay in class. It will also help parents as they will not have to stay home or find alternative childcare for up to two weeks if a child is exposed. It is important to note that this is only for those fully vaccinated, as those students who are not vaccinated will still have to quarantine for up to two weeks if exposed to COVID. Only 10% of those 12 to 18 are fully vaccinated in Arkansas, and it would be helpful for that number to rise enormously over the summer.

 

  • The CDC recommends that fully vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine, be restricted from work, or be tested following exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID, as their risk of infection is low. These new rules for students are consistent with these CDC recommendations.

 

  • As of February 21 of this year, there were 1,031 patients hospitalized, and on May 21 there were only 494. There was a huge drop in the number of 65 and older patients hospitalized from 494 in February to 164 in May, and much smaller drops across the other age groups. However, since March 21, the number of hospitalized patients age 25 to 48 has gone from 94 to 154, so please get vaccinated to help lower those numbers.

 

  • There are vaccine doses that are set to expire by the end of the month. Although we would hope to be able to use those here in Arkansas, any doses that are not going to be used here should be distributed to other countries that do need it, such as India or Brazil. Other states are in the same situation as Arkansas and are unlikely to take those doses. The FDA is monitoring doses and may allow for extending the expiration dates on the vaccines if they have been stored properly.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • There was a new study released looking at COVID cases among adolescents from data collected across 14 states earlier this year. After an initial decrease in rates of hospitalizations for adolescents due to COVID, rates have increased in March and April. Between January and March among 12- to 17-year-olds, 204 were hospitalized, 64 had to be admitted to the ICU, 10 had to be ventilated, but none died.

 

  • Although testing has been dropping recently, we assume there are more cases than are being caught by the tests, as people are not getting tested if they are not sick. We would like to remind everyone that COVID is still out there and to continue to be vigilant and get vaccinated. Since many are not getting tested, using the proxy of hospitalizations shows that the number of cases in Arkansas has stayed fairly stable.

6/2/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 130 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 266,856 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 634 from last Wednesday. There have been 112 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 74,836 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 360 from last Wednesday. There are 1,099 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 559 active probable cases. The total of 1,658 active cases is down 317 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,628 confirmed and 1,207 probable—increased by 8 since last Wednesday. There are 190 hospitalized patients, up 1 since last Wednesday, with 37 on ventilators, up 4 from last Wednesday.

 

There were 1,473 PCR tests and 628 antigen tests performed yesterday. The 7-day average for combined tests is 2,243, down 751 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,643,720 doses of vaccine, an increase of 25,590 from last Wednesday. A total of 1,986,807 inoculations have been given (75.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 36,806 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,146,131 people or 44.8% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 907,869 or 35.5%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 27th in new cases and 46th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 19th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

5/26/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 112 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 266,222 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 910 from last Wednesday. There have been 71 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 74,476 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 382 from last Wednesday. There are 1,349 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 626 active probable cases. The total of 1,975 active cases is down 24 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,623 confirmed and 1,204 probable—increased by 22 since last Wednesday. There are 189 hospitalized patients, up 1 since last Wednesday, with 33 on ventilators, down 2 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,100 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 68,511. Additionally, there were 605 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 33,920. The 7-day average for combined tests is 2,873, down 465 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,618,130 doses of vaccine, an increase of 20,890 from last Wednesday. A total of 1,950,001 inoculations have been given (74.5% of available doses). This represents an increase of 57,263 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,126,562 people or 44.1% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 887,419 or 34.7%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 32nd in new cases and 22nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 28th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total share of the population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Memorial Day is this weekend, and it begins the summer holiday season. Please be safe if you travel this weekend. Three state parks will host vaccine clinics, and anyone getting vaccinated there will be entered into a drawing for two nights of lodging at any Arkansas state park. The clinics will all be on Saturday, May 29, at DeGray Lake Resort State Park from 10am to 1pm, at Mississippi River State Park from 9am to noon, and Petit Jean State Park from 9am to 2pm.

 

  • According to CDC data, 50% of Arkansas adults have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine.

 

  • Arkansas will now offer two options for those who get vaccinated. Option 1 is a $20 Arkansas Scholarship Lottery Scratch-Off ticket. Option 2 is a gift certificate for an Arkansas Game and Fish Commission hunting and fishing license. These will be distributed across the state at local health units starting on June 1 for anyone vaccinated on May 25 or later. The Department of Health will purchase 50,000 lottery tickets and 50,000 Game and Fish Commission gift certificates to distribute to vaccine clinics. If this $2 million investment is effective at increasing vaccination rates, the state will increase the amounts available to keep up with demand. The funding is already available for vaccine distribution and has been approved for incentives.

 

  • Due to state regulations on the exclusive Arkansas Scholarship Lottery, a new lottery could not be designed, which would mean that Arkansas could not run a system similar to Ohio’s. However, with the Department of Health buying the tickets for the already created Arkansas Scholarship program, there would be no need for a new lottery for the vaccinated.

 

  • The only way to decrease the number of cases in the state is to increase the number of people vaccinated. The vaccination trends have increased this week, partly a result of starting to vaccination 12- to 15-year olds, but the numbers are still below where the state needs to be to hit the vaccination goal of 50% of all Arkansans vaccinated by July 31.

 

  1. Eric Hagler: Director, Arkansas Scholarship Lottery

 

  • The lottery tickets are the $1 Million Spectacular ticket. This allows anyone who chooses this to have an immediate chance to win $1 million. There are still two $1 million prizes available and over $19 million in total cash prizes still left in the current game. There is around a 1-in-3 chance of winning a cash prize with the ticket. If the ticket doesn’t win any money, going to the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery website and entering your ticket number will allow you to get another chance to win a $1 million prize. The lottery tickets will only be distributed to those who are 18 and older.

 

  • The $1 Million Spectacular is one of the state’s most popular games and would help to incentivize more people to get vaccinated. Governor Hutchinson wanted a ticket with a price of around $20 and using this game made sense.

 

Pat Fitts: Director, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission

 

  • The Game and Fish Commission will be giving two $10.50 gift certificates, which will cover both a fishing license and a small game hunting license.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • As of Tuesday, 6.4% of 12- to 15-year olds across the state have been vaccinated.

 

  • The increase is cases is multifactorial, including an increase in travel and Arkansans not following the mask guidance of wearing a mask in public if you are not vaccinated. Additionally, the number of variants in Arkansas have increased by 36% in the last week. Those are more dangerous than the main strain, and over one-third of the new variants were of the variant first found in the United Kingdom, and there are now some cases of the variant first found in Brazil which are resistant to the monoclonal antibody treatment.

 

  • The hospitalization rates will occasionally spike but current hospitalizations are still averaging below 200. The only way to decrease hospitalization rates are to increase vaccination rates.

5/19/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 164 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 265,312 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 887 from last Wednesday. There have been 80 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 74,094 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas, up 476 from last Wednesday. There are 1,293 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 706 active probable cases. The total of 1,999 active cases is down 39 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,607 confirmed and 1,198 probable—increased by 28 since last Wednesday. There are 188 hospitalized patients, up 19 since last Wednesday, with 35 on ventilators, down 7 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 3,113 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 50,269. Additionally, there were 678 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 23,860. The 7-day average for combined tests is 3,191, down 354 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,597,240 doses of vaccine, an increase of 18,240 from last Wednesday. A total of 1,892,738 inoculations have been given (72.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 60,662 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,096,630 people or 42.9% of the 12 and older population and fully vaccinated 857,105 or 33.5%. All Arkansans 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 44th in new cases and 8th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 34th in current hospitalizations, and 53rd in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

5/12/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a weekly basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 133 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 264,425 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 91 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 73,618 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,349 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 689 active probable cases. The total of 2,038 active cases is down 114 from last Wednesday. Total deaths—4,585 confirmed and 1,192 probable—increased by 23 since last Wednesday. There are 169 hospitalized patients, down 12 since last Wednesday, with 42 on ventilators, up 7 from last Wednesday.

 

Yesterday, 2,231 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 29,667. Additionally, there were 622 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 13,766. The 7-day average for combined tests is 3,259, down 634 from last Wednesday.

 

Arkansas has received 2,579,000 doses of vaccine, an increase of 44,430 from last Wednesday. A total of 1,832,076 inoculations have been given (71.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 66,030 since last Wednesday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,068,561 people or 45.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 822,457 or 34.6%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 48th in new cases and 28th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 44th in current hospitalizations, and 52nd in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

5/7/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 157 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 263,933 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 65 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 73,237 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,505 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 671 active probable cases. The total of 2,176 active cases is up 25 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,574 confirmed and 1,185 probable—increased by 2 since yesterday. There are 175 hospitalized patients with 37 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,086 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 17,888. Additionally, there were 573 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 6,998.

 

Arkansas has received 2,545,360 doses of vaccine, an increase of 7,290 from yesterday. A total of 1,790,444 inoculations have been given (70.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,888 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,051,329 people or 44.3% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 795,017 or 33.5%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 50th in new cases and 32nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 41st in current hospitalizations, and 50th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

5/6/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 146 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 263,776 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 42 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 73,172 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,494 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 657 active probable cases. The total of 2,151 active cases is down 1 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,572 confirmed and 1,185 probable—increased by 3 since yesterday. There are 177 hospitalized patients with 34 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,565 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 14,486. Additionally, there were 819 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 5,372.

 

Arkansas has received 2,538,070 doses of vaccine, an increase of 3,500 from yesterday. A total of 1,777,556 inoculations have been given (70.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 11,510 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,047,911 people or 44.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 785,271 or 33.1%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

5/5/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 220 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 263,630 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 78 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 73,130 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,479 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 673 probable active cases. The total of 2,152 active cases is up 109 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,570 confirmed and 1,184 probable, a combined increase of 2 since yesterday. There are 181 hospitalized patients with 35 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,760 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in May to 10,438. Additionally, there were 1,000 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 3,981 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 2,534,570 doses of vaccine, an increase of 9,500 from yesterday. A total of 1,766,046 inoculations have been given (69.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,426 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,043,790 people or 43.9% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 777,603 or 32.7%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

5/4/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 174 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 263,410 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 122 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 73,052 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,386 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 657 active probable cases. The total of 2,043 active cases is up 104 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,569 confirmed and 1,183 probable—increased by 5 since yesterday. There are 192 hospitalized patients with 28 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,840 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 6,022. Additionally, there were 1,079 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 1,937.

 

Arkansas has received 2,525,070 doses of vaccine, an increase of 700 from yesterday. A total of 1,751,620 inoculations have been given (69.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 10,982 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,038,556 people or 43.7% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 768,130 or 32.3%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Today’s press conference is the last weekly COVID update. There will continue to be weekly press conferences on Tuesday afternoons, but they will be less focused on COVID.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson has set a goal of getting to 50% of all Arkansans with at least one shot in the next 90 days, by July 31. Currently 1,038,556 Arkansans, or 34%, have received at least one shot. That means that the goal is to get at least one dose in an additional 467,206 Arkansans in the next 90 days. That would be an average of over 5,191 new people with a shot per day for 90 days. It would be better if it were higher than that, and it will be among the adult population who are eligible to be vaccinated. Each county will have specific numbers for how many additional people they need to vaccinate to hit the target.

 

  • Last year, 54.9% of all Arkansans received a flu shot, which was the highest number ever reported. In normal years, the number is between 40% and 50%.

 

  • Three new laws have passed this session about COVID vaccines and mask mandates. SB 615 prohibited state and local authorities from using a vaccine passport for entry, travel, education, and services, and applies to state and local authorities only. SB 590 ended the mask mandate and prohibits state and local authorities from mandating the use of a mask. HB1547 prohibits the state from mandating COVID vaccinations and will sunset 2 years after full FDA approval for the COVID vaccines.

 

  • Additionally, the current state of emergency shall end on May 30. If Governor Hutchinson wants to renew the state of emergency, he needs to request it by May 20.

 

  • On April 3, COVID variants had been found in 12 counties across Arkansas. On April 19, that was up to 18 counties with Benton, Washington, and Miller Counties with more than 5 cases. On May 3, variants had been found in 29 counties, with Pulaski, Lonoke, and Poinsett also having more than 5 cases.

 

  • Due to the COVID spread in India, the federal government has limited international travel to and from that country, and the state is recommending that any Arkansans who have or will come back from India soon should quarantine for two weeks to monitor for COVID symptoms.

 

  • Asked if herd immunity is still the goal for Arkansas, Governor Hutchinson said that the 50% goal in 90 days is not herd immunity. It is going to take a concentrated effort to get to 50% and then the goal is to get higher, but it will be a struggle.

 

  • Asked if there is a partisan basis for the low vaccination rate in Arkansas, Governor Hutchinson said that he does not think there is, and some people just do not want it mandated while others just do not get any vaccinations. It is not just resistance to any vaccination; it is also delay due to low case counts or needing to go far to get a shot.

 

  • Asked about the federal government redistributing unordered vaccine doses to states that need the additional doses, Governor Hutchinson said he supports that plan. The state will not receive fewer doses than they request, but if the state does not order them due to low demand, those doses should go to states like Massachusetts that need them.

 

  • Asked if the 90-day vaccination goal is possible at the current rate, Governor Hutchinson said that the main thing is to stop the current decline. The rate slowed but has started to pick up a bit over the last few days. It will be a big challenge to hit that goal as the current rate will leave the state short.

 

  • Asked what tools the state would have to deal with a COVID surge after signing the laws that restrict the government’s emergency powers and mask mandates, Governor Hutchinson said that he had the same tools as before, but it now requires legislative support to use them.

 

  • Asked if there is any concern about vaccine waste at the pop-up clinics, Governor Hutchinson said that they will be working with providers to avoid that as much as possible. One possible adjustment would be getting smaller vials with fewer doses, but that would slow the manufacturing process. There will be more waste, but the goal is to ensure that everyone who wants to be vaccinated can be vaccinated.

 

  • Asked if the weekly press briefings have achieved their goal of allowing a direct line of communication to the public about COVID, Governor Hutchinson said that these have been successful. It was better when they were daily, but that was difficult to sustain. He continues to take COVID very seriously and will continue to work to get people vaccinated and have press conferences as needed.

 

Renee Mallory: Deputy Director, Arkansas Department for Public Health Programs

 

  • Last week, the state asked communities to let them know when there would be large gatherings of people so that they could bring vaccine clinics. They will not require any appointment at these events, and people can just get the shot. The staff there will also be able to answer any questions that people have about the vaccine and its safety and efficacy.

 

  • Over the month of May, there will be multiple vaccine pop-up clinics across the state. Today, there is one at the Little Rock Travelers game at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock. On May 9, there will be one at the Central Mall Food Court in Fort Smith. On May 15th, there will be on at the Arkansas Made-Arkansas Proud craft market at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock. War Memorial Stadium will also host clinics during high school graduations on May 13, 21, 22, 24, 25, and 26 for the Benton, Bryant, Cabot, Conway, Sheridan, and the Hall, Southwest, Parkview, and Central Little Rock ceremonies. There will also be clinics at the Shirley Homecoming Celebration June 4-5 in Shirley, the Lum & Abner Festival in Mena June 5-6, the PurpleHull Pea Festival June 26 in Emerson, and the King Biscuit Blues Festival in Helena in October. They will also be at farmers markets, car shows, firework displays, food banks, rodeos, and livestock shows. If it is happening in Arkansas, they hope to have a clinic there.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • There has been a significant jump in the B.1.1.7 variant in Arkansas, and that variant makes up 75% of the variants found. It has a higher morbidity and transmissibility and is likely what is driving the higher hospital rates among younger people in other states. Arkansas is also seeing a higher number of younger people with COVID and they cannot get the vaccine yet. The best way to help them is to ensure that all adults with kids get vaccinated so they can be protected.

 

  • Arkansas is sending more samples to the CDC to test for variants, including the variant first found in India.

 

  • It is obvious to the CDC and health officials that herd immunity is not an obtainable goal currently. The goal is just to vaccinate as many people as possible. The more people that get vaccinated, the fewer people in whom the virus can replicate and mutate. Eventually, either through vaccination or infection, there will be herd immunity for the main strain, and only variants will be circulating.

 

5/3/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 44 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 263,236 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 17 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,930 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,339 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 600 active probable cases. The total of 1,939 active cases is down 27 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,565 confirmed and 1,182 probable, a combined increase of 8 since last Friday. There are 172 hospitalized patients with 29 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,307 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in May to 3,771. Additionally, there were 106 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 344.

 

Arkansas has received 2,524,370 doses of vaccine, an increase of 8,780 from last Friday. A total of 1,740,638 inoculations have been given (69.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 29,653 since last Friday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 1,034,743 people or 43.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 760,781 or 32.0%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/30/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 149 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,912 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 47 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,813 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,306 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 660 active probable cases. The total of 1,966 active cases is up 5 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,559 confirmed and 1,180 probable—increased by 4 since yesterday. There are 166 hospitalized patients with 28 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,516 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 108,917. Additionally, there were 685 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 43,206.

 

Arkansas has received 2,515,590 doses of vaccine, an increase of 7,810 from yesterday. A total of 1,710,985 inoculations have been given (68.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 16,066 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,024,423 people or 43.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 740,648 or 31.2%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 51st in new cases and 32nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 46th in current hospitalizations, and 49th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/29/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 156 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,763 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 84 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,766 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,304 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 657 active probable cases. The total of 1,961 active cases is up 53 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,555 confirmed and 1,180 probable—increased by 9 since yesterday. There are 166 hospitalized patients with 29 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,135 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 104,673. Additionally, there were 973 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 41,789.

 

Arkansas has received 2,507,780 doses of vaccine, an increase of 1,400 from yesterday. A total of 1,694,919 inoculations have been given (67.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,774 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,019,192 people or 42.9% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 729,512 or 30.7%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/28/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 179 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,607 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 112 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,682 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,293 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 615 probable active cases. The total of 1,908 active cases is up 64 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,547 confirmed and 1,179 probable, a combined increase of 1 since yesterday. There are 165 hospitalized patients with 27 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,677 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in April to 100,082. Additionally, there were 1,055 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 39,681 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 2,506,380 doses of vaccine, an increase of 11,600 from yesterday. A total of 1,680,145 inoculations have been given (67.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 18,224 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,015,133 people or 42.7% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 718,685 or 30.3%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

4/27/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 135 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,428 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 94 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,570 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,279 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 565 active probable cases. The total of 1,844 active cases is up 39 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,546 confirmed and 1,179 probable—increased by 5 since yesterday. There are 157 hospitalized patients with 26 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,883 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 93,900. Additionally, there were 1,096 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 37,118.

 

Arkansas has received 2,494,780 doses of vaccine, an increase of 26,770 from yesterday. A total of 1,661,921 inoculations have been given (66.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,170 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 1,008,460 people or 42.5% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 707,072 or 29.8%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/26/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 52 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,293 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 11 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,476 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,262 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 543 active probable cases. The total of 1,805 active cases is down 155 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,542 confirmed and 1,178 probable, a combined increase of 4 since last Friday. There are 170 hospitalized patients with 27 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,158 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 91,478. Additionally, there were 106 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 34,326.

 

Arkansas has received 2,468,010 doses of vaccine, an increase of 31,540 from last Friday. A total of 1,646,751 inoculations have been given (66.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 28,595 since last Friday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 1,003,241 people or 42.2% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 697,096 or 29.4%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

After the CDC announced they were lifting the pause on the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, Governor Hutchinson released the following statement. “We have resumed administration of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine today. This is great news, and it will allow us to increase the number of doses administered in the coming days and weeks. If you haven’t gotten vaccinated, schedule your appointment today.”

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/23/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 168 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 262,078 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 68 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,380 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,359 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 601 active probable cases. The total of 1,960 active cases is up 37 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,539 confirmed and 1,177 probable—increased by 5 since yesterday. There are 153 hospitalized patients with 23 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,371 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 84,054. Additionally, there were 841 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 32,312.

 

Arkansas has received 2,436,470 doses of vaccine, an increase of 49,650 from yesterday. A total of 1,618,156 inoculations have been given (66.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 18,457 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 997,710 people or 42.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 679,963 or 28.6%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 50th in new cases and 32nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 42nd in current hospitalizations, and 50th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/22/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 108 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,910 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 53 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,312 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,327 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 596 active probable cases. The total of 1,923 active cases is down 20 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,535 confirmed and 1,176 probable—increased by 3 since yesterday. There are 171 hospitalized patients with 22 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,672 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 80,035. Additionally, there were 965 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 29,952.

 

Arkansas has received 2,386,820 doses of vaccine, an increase of 33,840 from yesterday. A total of 1,599,699 inoculations have been given (67.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 20,648 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 988,555 people or 41.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 664,608 or 28.0%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Governor Hutchinson had a brief press conference today to commemorate the 1,000,000th person in Arkansas to get a dose of COVID vaccine. The patient was a college student from Shorter College, and the immunization went smoothly.

 

  • Governor Hutchinson said that he was encouraged by the fact that, with a little over 3,000,000 Arkansans, having 1,000,000 at least partially vaccinated is a very good sign.

 

  • With over 40% of the vaccine eligible population at least partially vaccinated, it is a step closer to being able to move on from the pandemic.

 

  • Additionally, Governor Hutchinson also announced that the CDC has rated every state on vaccine administration and compared them to the other states in their region and nationally on four categories: ordering the vaccine, inventory, administration, and equity. The CDC rates Arkansas as at the top on ordering the vaccine, the state is doing well on administration, and Arkansas is leading in administering the vaccine in an equitable fashion. Arkansas’s issue is inventory is increasing due to not enough demand for the vaccines.

 

  • The state is working to reach out to encourage more people to get vaccinated with an advertising campaign. Getting the rest of Arkansans vaccinated will require work from the media and employers to remove any fears of the vaccine and to make it clear how easy it is to get vaccinated.

 

  • Asked about the proposed legislation to ban requirements for state employees to be vaccinated, Governor Hutchinson said that he made these changes already, and that it was not clear that they needed to be included in a law. He is glad that they exempted private companies from that requirement.

 

  • Over 50% of prisoners in Arkansas have been vaccinated, which is one of the highest rates in the country.

4/21/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 198 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,802 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 154 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,259 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,330 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 613 probable active cases. The total of 1,943 active cases is up 139 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,532 confirmed and 1,176 probable, a combined increase of 2 since yesterday. There are 175 hospitalized patients with 24 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,150 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in April to 74,960. Additionally, there were 1,028 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 27,896 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 2,352,980 doses of vaccine, an increase of 61,360 from yesterday. A total of 1,579,051 inoculations have been given (67.1% of available doses). This represents an increase of 20,706 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 981,907 people or 41.3% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 650,339 or 27.4%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

4/20/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 132 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,604 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 66 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,105 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,280 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 524 active probable cases. The total of 1,804 active cases is up 15 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,530 confirmed and 1,176 probable—increased by 7 since yesterday. There are 177 hospitalized patients with 24 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,746 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 70,313. Additionally, there were 1,018 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 25,103.

 

Arkansas has received 2,291,620 doses of vaccine, an increase of 29,490 from yesterday. A total of 1,558,345 inoculations have been given (68.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 19,583 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 973,452 people or 41.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 637,821 or 26.9%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Almost one million Arkansans have received at least one dose of a vaccine, and they expect to hit that goal this week. Additionally, 27.5% of Arkansas residents 18 and older have been fully vaccinated, and an additional 14.2% have been partially vaccinated. While it is good news that is over 40%, it is below the national average. It shows that, as a southern and rural state, Arkansas has some resistance to vaccinations. It is a demand issue now, not a supply issue. It is going to take some work to get the percent vaccinated to hit the 60% to 70% that is needed for herd immunity. Vaccine hesitancy can be overcome with information, influencers, examples being set, and making it as convenient as possible to get vaccinated.

 

  • Among Arkansans 65 and older, 52.5% are fully vaccinated, with an additional 16% partially vaccinated. Among those between 18 and 64, 20.1% are fully vaccinated, with 13.6% partially vaccinated. That points to a need to vaccinate those between 18 and 64, as they believe they’re healthy, busy, and can do it later. They need to be vaccinated for the good of the community and their own health.

 

  • By race and ethnicity among those 65 and older, 55.8% of Hispanics, 49.1% of whites, and 45.1% of Blacks are fully vaccinated, while 22.2% of Hispanics, 13% of whites, and 15.4% of Blacks are partially vaccinated. One month ago, there was a 9.5-point gap between white and Black fully vaccinated numbers, and it has been narrowed to only 4 points. That reflects well on community partners and the Department of Health emphasizing equity for vaccinations.

 

  • Arkansas is doing well in new case counts compared to surrounding states, but the concern is that surrounding states show that if Arkansans are too slow in vaccinations, the case counts could start to rise.

 

  • Please call the state vaccine call number at 1-800-985-6030 to get help finding an appointment.

 

  • The state is concentrating on vaccinating younger Arkansans and will be working to set up clinics in schools to vaccinate students. Hundreds of students across the state have already been vaccinated, and the state is encouraging eligible students to get vaccinated before summer break. If you are from out of state, you can get your first dose here and your second dose in your home state. If you are at school out of state, you can get your first dose there and your second dose her in Arkansas. Get your vaccine because it is important to help stop the spread of COVID.

 

  • Asked what will happen if the state cannot get above 70% vaccinated for herd immunity, Governor Hutchinson said that would mean a likely case spike in the winter. However, with over 40% already vaccinated or partially vaccinated, and more to come, there is significant protection for many Arkansans. To get it up to those numbers that epidemiologists would recommend, it will require hard work and going to where the people are to get them vaccinated.

 

  • Asked about legislative proposals for bans on mask mandates and vaccine passports, Governor Hutchinson said that while there are no mask mandates or vaccine passports now, in the future, there may need to be those in place. Future governors may be limited by these bills. Governor Hutchinson will work with the legislature on these bills, but he hasn’t seen final bills yet.

 

  • Asked about any concerns with the pause with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, Governor Hutchinson said that he looked forward to it being brought back due to the minimal risk. It is much easier to vaccinate harder to reach populations with just one shot.

 

  • The Arkansas Department of Health vaccination numbers only reflect the date when the second shot has been given, not the two-week delay for them to be considered fully vaccinated. This is the standard across all states.

 

  • Asked about the Marshallese population vaccination numbers, Governor Hutchinson said they have been trying to ensure that they are vaccinated, including clinics designated for them.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • As of now, research suggests that only the variant first found in the United Kingdom has a higher morbidity rate than the main strain of COVID, but all other variants have a higher transmissibility.

 

  • Over the last week, there was an increase of around 25% of cases being variants compared to the previous week. That includes a 70% increase in the number of cases of the variant first found in the United Kingdom. There is also an increase in the variant first found in California, which has about a 20% higher transmissibility.

 

  • Not every positive case is being tested, so it is expected that there are more variant cases than the state has confirmed. Now is the time to get vaccinated, so that the variants with greater transmissibility cannot spread in Arkansas.

 

  • Additionally, the variant cases in the Northeast and Upper Midwest are being found more in adolescents and young adults, with more severe cases being more common than in the main strain. It is expected that there will be approval for vaccinating those 12 to 15 by the late summer, and so they can be protected from these more dangerous variants.

 

  • The pause in the Johnson and Johnson vaccine shows that the vaccine safety system works and is robust. There will be a meeting on Friday to judge whether there have been any more cases and analysis of the data they have. There is also some delay due to issues at the manufacturing plant in Baltimore, but that is not safety related. Dr. Romero hopes that they will be able to resume vaccinations soon.

 

  • Arkansas has reached out to surrounding states to share data on whether Arkansans have been vaccinated in other states, and to share whether non-Arkansans have been vaccinated in Arkansas. Some of the data has been shared, but there is still more data coming to reflect fully the number of Arkansans who have been vaccinated. There is no automatic sharing of data between states on cross-state vaccination numbers.

 

Stephanie Williams: Deputy Director for Public Health Programs, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Vaccine doses will be distributed next week to all local health units across the state, and so Arkansans are encouraged to call either those local health units or the vaccine hotline to schedule an appointment. There is at least one location in each county, and they will be open from 8am to 4:30pm on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, and from 9:30am to 6pm on Tuesdays.

 

  • Beyond calling local health units and the vaccine hotline, the Arkansas Department of Health website has information on vaccine availability at local health clinics, doctors, and pharmacies.

 

  • The Department of Health is working with War Memorial Stadium to set up a vaccine clinic onsite at an event in May, called Arkansas Made, Arkansas Proud, where hundreds of artisans and craftspeople will come to sell their products.

 

  • All the local health units will be receiving the Moderna vaccines, so it will only be for those 18 and older, and a second appointment will be scheduled when you get your first dose.

4/19/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 54 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,472 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 5 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 72,039 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,269 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 520 active probable cases. The total of 1,789 active cases is down 103 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,525 confirmed and 1,174 probable, a combined increase of 7 since last Friday. There are 164 hospitalized patients with 22 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,553 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 67,574. Additionally, there were 200 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 22,728.

 

Arkansas has received 2,262,130 doses of vaccine, an increase of 106,490 from last Friday. A total of 1,538,762 inoculations have been given (68.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 37,244 since last Friday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 965,229 people or 40.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 626,397 or 26.4%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/16/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 171 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,214 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 66 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,972 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,285 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 607 active probable cases. The total of 1,892 active cases is up 49 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,520 confirmed and 1,172 probable—increased by 6 since yesterday. There are 152 hospitalized patients with 15 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,218 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 58,748. Additionally, there were 639 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 19,971.

 

Arkansas has received 2,155,640 doses of vaccine, an increase of 14,070 from yesterday. A total of 1,501,518 inoculations have been given (69.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 23,066 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 950,022 people or 40.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 604,225 or 25.4%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 52nd in new cases and 35th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 43rd in current hospitalizations, and 50th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/15/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 216 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 261,043 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 67 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,906 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,255 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 588 active probable cases. The total of 1,843 active cases is up 128 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,520 confirmed and 1,166 probable—increased by 6 since yesterday. There are 153 hospitalized patients with 18 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,038 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 53,577. Additionally, there were 963 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 18,788.

 

Arkansas has received 2,141,570 doses of vaccine, an increase of 4,100 from yesterday. A total of 1,478,452 inoculations have been given (69.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 25,630 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 940,378 people or 39.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 590,509 or 24.9%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/14/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 131 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,827 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 89 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,839 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,133 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 582 probable active cases. The total of 1,715 active cases is up 52 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,518 confirmed and 1,162 probable, a combined increase of 7 since yesterday. There are 151 hospitalized patients with 20 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,798 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in April to 47,485. Additionally, there were 924 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 16,729 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 2,137,470 doses of vaccine, an increase of 98,670 from yesterday. A total of 1,452,822 inoculations have been given (68.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 25,726 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 929,187 people or 39.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 575,496 or 24.2%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

4/13/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 117 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,696 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 107 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,750 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,107 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 556 active probable cases. The total of 1,663 active cases is up 23 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,516 confirmed and 1,157 probable—increased by 8 since yesterday. There are 148 hospitalized patients with 19 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,912 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 42,376. Additionally, there were 901 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 14,816.

 

Arkansas has received 2,038,800 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 1,427,096 inoculations have been given (70.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 23,220 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 916,955 people or 38.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 560,168 or 23.6%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • The state’s allocation of vaccines has been consistent or a slight increase for both Pfizer and Moderna this week compared to last week, but there has been a sharp decrease in the distribution of the Johnson and Johnson vaccines. This distribution is a decrease from 43,500 to only 5,200 doses of that vaccine, which is due to the issues with the manufacturing plant in Baltimore causing a nationwide shortage, not a result of the CDC and FDA recommendation of a two-week pause to investigate reports of a rare, possible side effect of the vaccine. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are still moving forward, and the state encourages everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

 

  • Romero and the Department of Health have confidence in the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and the pause is to be sure about the treatment of any adverse reaction. The CDC says that with only 6 reported cases of the reaction out of more than 6.8 million doses given, it is still an effective vaccine, but they want to be sure that doctors and other healthcare providers can ensure that they are prepared to treat those adverse reactions.

 

  • The state has around 245,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine, 178,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine, and 63,000 doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine currently on hand. That includes around 20% reserved for second doses and 20% reserved for mass planned events. The other 60% of doses are waiting on people willing to be vaccinated. Please take advantage of any opportunity to get your vaccination if you haven’t already. Call the vaccine phone line at 1-800-985-6030 and they can help you find where to be vaccinated. Additionally, if you are homebound, the state will be working with the Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care (AFMC) to go to you directly to get you vaccinated.

 

  • The AFMC will also be making reminder calls for all those people who did not get their second dose as expected. Those calls will start on Saturday, April 17.
  • Comparing Arkansas to Michigan with regard to COVID cases, both had peaks in December and January, Michigan had a low point in February, and has now had a peak above their December peak. Arkansas on the other hand, had a later peak, but has been at a plateau for the last month. There was a delay of around a month for the first peak for Arkansas from Michigan’s peak. Arkansas can prevent another peak by vaccinating as many people as possible, and only then can Arkansas avoid what has happened in other states.

 

  • Although it is still low, the positive percent has increased slightly over the last two weeks, which is concerning. Please be aware that COVID is still here in Arkansas and you should continue to be careful.

 

  • If you have a vaccination appointment through your pharmacy, it is likely that you are scheduled for either Pfizer or Moderna. Please make sure that you are getting one of those brands and go to your appointment. Johnson and Johnson was mostly being used at special events or mass vaccination clinics, and those have been postponed while the adverse reactions are being studied.

 

  • Johnson and Johnson vaccine doses that the state has in storage will stay in storage until it is deemed that they are safe to distribute.

 

  • Asked what he would say to those who have gotten the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, Governor Hutchinson said that he would thank them for getting vaccinated, and it remains an effective vaccine, so you are fully vaccinated two weeks after your dose. If any symptoms show up, they should contact their doctor immediately.

 

  • Asked if this pause would encourage vaccine hesitancy, Governor Hutchinson said that he expressed his desire for the CDC to make a quick but thorough investigation to ensure that any concerns are assuaged. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have not had any pause, are still being administered, and are effective. Confidence needs to be rebuilt, but the White House has been very transparent about this issue, which should help. Governor Hutchinson expects that the White House will have to take the lead on national messaging about the pause and the safety of the vaccines.

 

  • There is no evidence yet to suggest that the ending of the mask mandate has caused the increase in cases over the past couple of days.

 

  • The state is following the CDC recommendations to pause administration of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and ask that all providers in the state also pause administration.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Through the VAERS reporting system in the United States, there have been six cases of Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), a blood clot in the sinuses. Those cases have all been an adverse reaction to the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. All six cases have been in women, with an age range of 18 to 48, all occurred between six and thirteen days after the administration of the vaccine, and none were in Arkansas.

 

  • This is a positive sign, because the system has worked to find these very rare events. The system had various safeguards to ensure that the side effects could be easily tracked and would not be missed. Catching these rare side effects is a success story and why the United States has the safest vaccine program in the world.

 

  • Johnson and Johnson is presenting their data to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices now and that information will be presented through a public meeting tomorrow, detailing these specific cases.

 

  • As such, the CDC has rightly paused using the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, because the unusualness of the CVST means that doctors need to be made aware that the standard treatment for thrombosis will not work on this particular thrombosis. There will be a Health Alert Notification about this treatment, and doctors can reach out to the Arkansas Department of Health for the treatment protocols.

 

  • If it has been a month or more since your Johnson and Johnson dose, your risk is extremely low. If it is within the first three weeks, look for symptoms such as intense headaches, such as migraines if you have them, and chest, abdominal, or leg pains. If you have any of these symptoms, please seek medical attention at an emergency room to allow the doctors to examine you. Make sure to inform them that you have received the vaccine and how long it has been since you got it.

4/12/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 57 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,579 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 12 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,643 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,121 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 519 active probable cases. The total of 1,640 active cases is down 92 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,514 confirmed and 1,151 probable, a combined increase of 4 since last Friday. There are 156 hospitalized patients with 17 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,494 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 39,907. Additionally, there were 93 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 13,009.

 

Arkansas has received 2,038,800 doses of vaccine, an increase of 17,400 from last Friday. A total of 1,403,876 inoculations have been given (68.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 41,505 since last Friday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 904,565 people or 38.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 547,037 or 23.0%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/9/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 120 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,326 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 58 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,556 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,156 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 576 active probable cases. The total of 1,732 active cases is up 25 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,511 confirmed and 1,150 probable—decreased by 1 since yesterday. There are 160 hospitalized patients with 23 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,692 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 30,635. Additionally, there were 673 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 10,301.

 

Arkansas has received 2,021,400 doses of vaccine, an increase of 85,300 from yesterday. A total of 1,362,371 inoculations have been given (67.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 32,978 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 882,348 people or 37.2% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 523,894 or 22.1%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 52nd in new cases and 37th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 40th in current hospitalizations, and 51st in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/8/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 151 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,206 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 48 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,498 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,151 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 556 active probable cases. The total of 1,707 active cases is up 58 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,512 confirmed and 1,150 probable—increased by 2 since yesterday. There are 141 hospitalized patients with 23 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,385 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 26,506. Additionally, there were 1,066 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 9,201.

 

Arkansas has received 1,936,100 doses of vaccine, an increase of 10,500 from yesterday. A total of 1,329,393 inoculations have been given (68.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 25,360 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 865,427 people or 36.4% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 506,131 or 21.3%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/7/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 126 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 260,055 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 118 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,450 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,098 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 551 probable active cases. The total of 1,649 active cases is up 47 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,510 confirmed and 1,150 probable, a combined increase of 7 since yesterday. There are 150 hospitalized patients with 20 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,177 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in April to 20,851. Additionally, there were 1,242 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 6,797 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 1,925,600 doses of vaccine, an increase of 43,700 from yesterday. A total of 1,304,033 inoculations have been given (67.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 27,358 since yesterday. Arkansas has at least partially vaccinated 851,548 people or 35.9% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 492,473 or 20.7%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

4/6/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 71 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,929 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 92 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,332 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,097 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 505 active probable cases. The total of 1,602 active cases is down 5 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,505 confirmed and 1,148 probable—increased by 5 since yesterday. There are 152 hospitalized patients with 26 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,844 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 16,400. Additionally, there were 1,276 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 4,827.

 

Arkansas has received 1,881,900 doses of vaccine, an increase of 58,020 from yesterday. A total of 1,276,675 inoculations have been given (67.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 25,074 since yesterday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 835,137 people or 35.2% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 477,857 or 20.1%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Minority community vaccination rates are behind white vaccination rates, and so the state is making a concerted effort to address those inequities. Black Arkansans are 15.3% of the population, but only 11.2% of the race known, fully vaccinated population. Whites are 81.4% of the population, and account for 84.2% of the race known, fully vaccinated population.

 

  • Among Arkansans 65 and older, 45.3% have been fully vaccinated, and another 19.2% have been partially vaccinated, meaning that 64.5% of Arkansans 65 and older have been at least partially vaccinated.

 

  • There is still community spread of COVID in Arkansas. There are still cases that are probably not being found through testing, and so Arkansans should continue to be vigilant even with low case counts.

 

  • Although case counts in Arkansas are low, cases are increasing in sixteen states, in Europe, and in other countries. That means that an additional wave of cases could come to Arkansas soon, and the only way to stop that is to increase vaccination numbers. The state is working to emphasize how important it is to be vaccinated, even though people are going to full stadiums at Major League Baseball games.

 

  • Asked if Arkansas would consider banning vaccine passports as Texas has, Governor Hutchinson said that they would allow for individual businesses to have latitude over what they would require in their workplace. This approach would be similar to drug testing. Governor Hutchinson does not think that it should be a requirement for travel. Cruise ships may require vaccinations, which would provide piece of mind for those travelling. The state is not going to be mandating vaccinations.

 

  • Asked whether the state will start to focus on the vaccine hesitancy among Republicans and white evangelical Christians, Governor Hutchinson said that they are focusing on minorities now and vaccinating the public as a whole. Bringing in doctors to discuss the safety and efficacy of the vaccines can be beneficial for the vaccination rates at businesses or church groups.

 

  • Arkansas will receive their share of a $5 billion grant to encourage vaccinations among minority groups. The state is still working to discover what their share of the grant will be, but for now, money is not a problem for outreach programs.

 

  • Asked if there has been any concern about lifting the mask mandate, Governor Hutchinson said that he has been to church where everyone was still wearing masks, and that he has heard from multiple people that businesses still had people wearing masks in them. Schools in rural areas may be lifting the requirement, but urban schools may be keeping masks. Governor Hutchinson is happy with the response since lifting the mask mandate.

 

Dr. Michelle Smith: Director, Arkansas Office of Health Equity

 

  • In January, the Office of Health Equity created task forces to help the state place vaccine distribution sites across the state to help cover minority populations that have been hit hard by COVID. These populations include racial and ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, faith-based organizations, rural communities, and elderly populations. The teams have been dispatched to counties and communities with low vaccination rates to work with local leaders to encourage vaccinations. Nurses, health educators, public information specialists, and others help reach out to address vaccine hesitancy. There are also around 100 volunteers that help staff these clinics. Since January of this year, over 12,000 doses have been distributed to Jefferson, Pulaski, Desha, St. Francis, Crittenden, and Sebastian Counties. The state has hired an additional 30 workers and will expand into more locations across the state. The goal is to administer 8,000 more doses with 50% or more to minority groups in Arkansas. The goal will be achieved with the help of the Arkansas Pharmacists Association, the Black Mayors Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield, UAMS, Baptist Health, and NYIT-Jonesboro. There has been effective outreach to Black fraternity and sorority groups, increasing turnout at these events.

 

  • There will be a Johnson and Johnson vaccination clinic at Shorter College in North Little Rock from 10am to 3pm on Wednesday, April 7. On Saturday, there will be a Johnson and Johnson vaccination clinic at the Larry S. Bryant Center in Forrest City. Appointments for these clinics can be scheduled through the Department of Health website, using their 1-800-985-6030 number, or by showing up to these clinics and the staff will work to ensure you can be vaccinated.

 

  • Volunteers are needed for these and future clinics, which can take the form of assisting with transportation, helping with scheduling appointments online, or even just encouraging more people to get vaccinated. If you would like to volunteer, please call the Office of Health Equity at 501-661-2622.

 

Dr. Marlene Battle: D&D Pharmacy

 

  • Pharmacists have been working tirelessly to ensure that all eligible Arkansans can get vaccinated. In addition to working at the pharmacy, some have been working with the Health Equity strike teams to vaccinate people at local churches and other facilities.

 

  • D&D Pharmacy in Little Rock will be offering a drive-through vaccination clinic on Saturday, April 10 from 9am to 2pm, and preregistration is available at their website.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Arkansas is starting to see an increasing number of people who have received the first dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna shot not showing up for their second dose. Even if you miss your appointment, you can call the Department of Health at 1-800-985-6030 and they can assist you with rescheduling your appointment. It is incredibly important for everyone to get the second dose so you can be fully vaccinated.

 

  • Asked what share of the cases are from new variants across the state, Dr. Romero said that the state doesn’t sequence every case, so they cannot provide exact numbers. As of last week, the state had identified three variants, and new data suggests that there have been 18 or more variants founds in Arkansas since the beginning of March. Due to this increase in variants found, the state has been sending more samples to be tested by the CDC to identify these variants.

 

  • Romero was in Ft. Smith last weekend to discuss the vaccine with the Latino community in both English and Spanish. Dr. Romero thinks it was well-received by the people in attendance.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • School districts are getting back to normal and are administering the standardized tests to students across the state to discover the effects that COVID shutdowns, remote learning, and other disruptions have had.

 

  • School districts across the state are working with the Department of Health to provide vaccines for those students 16 and older, so that this can be testing for the expected FDA approval for vaccines for those 12 to 15 by the beginning of the fall semester. The goal is to vaccinate students before the end of the school year.

 

  • Schools are not reporting any issues with the lifting of the mask mandates and that effect on their ability to test their students. They have been flexible with alternative sites and dates if needed.

4/5/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 42 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,858 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 2 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,240 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,142 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 465 active probable cases. The total of 1,607 active cases is down 77 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,501 confirmed and 1,147 probable, a combined increase of 9 since last Friday. There are 145 hospitalized patients with 23 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,337 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in April to 13,901. Additionally, there were 78 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 2,802.

 

Arkansas has received 1,823,780 doses of vaccine, an increase of 66,980 from last Friday. A total of 1,251,601 inoculations have been given (68.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 46,613 since last Friday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 822,130 people or 34.6% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 464,607 or 19.6%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/2/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 89 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,600 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 55 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,153 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,148 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 536 active probable cases. The total of 1,684 active cases is down 40 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,492 confirmed and 1,147 probable—increased by 3 since yesterday. There are 161 hospitalized patients with 26 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,246 PCR tests were performed. Additionally, there were 1,103 antigen tests performed yesterday.

 

Arkansas has received 1,756,800 doses of vaccine, an increase of 23,640 from yesterday. A total of 1,204,988 inoculations have been given (68.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 29,391 since yesterday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 794,645 people or 33.5% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 442,758 or 18.6%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all 56 states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 53rd in new cases and 14th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 41st in current hospitalizations, and 50th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

4/1/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 154 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,511 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 57 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,098 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,191 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and 533 active probable cases. The total of 1,724 active cases is up 29 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,489 confirmed and 1,147 probable—increased by 10 since yesterday. There are 168 hospitalized patients with 26 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,632 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 162,781. Additionally, there were 1,055 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 66,403.

 

Arkansas has received 1,733,160 doses of vaccine, an increase of 47,600 from yesterday. A total of 1,175,597 inoculations have been given (67.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 32,705 since yesterday. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 778,725 people or 32.8% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 426,913 or 18.0%. All Arkansans 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/31/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 134 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,357 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 78 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 71,041 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,157 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 253,685 confirmed recoveries. There are 538 probable active cases and there have been 69,347 probable recoveries. The total of 1,695 active cases is down 22 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,484 confirmed and 1,142 probable, a combined increase of 10 since yesterday. There are 166 hospitalized patients with 27 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,767 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in March to 156,342. Additionally, there were 1,120 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 63,774 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 1,755,140 doses of vaccine, an increase of 18,980 from yesterday. A total of 1,010,188 inoculations have been given (57.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 20,080 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 280,130 doses of vaccine, an increase of 11,700 from yesterday, and have given 132,704 inoculations, an increase of 4,537 since yesterday, for 47.4% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 760,043 people or 32.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 411,091 or 17.3%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

3/30/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 103 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,223 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 75 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,963 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,183 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 253,530 confirmed recoveries. There are 534 active probable cases and there have been 69,279 probable recoveries. The total of 1,717 active cases is down 56 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,480 confirmed and 1,136 probable—increased by 15 since yesterday. There are 170 hospitalized patients with 25 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,068 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 150,152. Additionally, there were 1,754 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 61,727.

 

Arkansas has received 1,736,160 doses of vaccine, an increase of 81,710 from yesterday. A total of 990,108 inoculations have been given (57.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 18,488 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 268,430 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 128,167 inoculations, an increase of 3,653 since yesterday, for 47.7% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 745,700 people or 31.4% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 398,951 or 16.8%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Nationwide, there will be an additional increase of 5.4 million doses of vaccine this week. This means that there will be an additional 25,000 more doses than expected, which will also be the case for at least the next three weeks.

 

  • With the hospitalization rate well below 750, Governor Hutchinson has announced that the mask mandate will be lifted today. This does not mean that the use of masks is not encouraged. Governor Hutchinson said that he will continue to wear the mask every day. The state also encourages everyone to respect decisions to require masks at restaurants, hotels, government buildings, salons, barbershops, stores, event venues, schools that opt to continue the mask policy, Department of Corrections facilities, and hospitals and other health care providers. Private business can continue to require masks if they choose to do so. State employees will be required to wear masks at work if they are unable to socially distance.

 

  • Effective today, all Arkansans 16 and over are now eligible to receive the COVID vaccine. They can call 1-800-985-6030 to reach the state vaccine call line to direct them to the nearest location for a vaccine appointment. Please take advantage of this if possible, but by opening eligibility, it is likely that they will be very busy, so please be patient.

 

  • President Biden called for 90% of American adults to be eligible for the vaccine, and Arkansas is well ahead of that goal. Opening eligibility to the vaccine will give Arkansas a path through the pandemic and to a safe future. The additional challenge of having 90% of Americans within 5 miles of a place where they can be vaccinated may be challenging for rural Arkansas, but they are attempting to expand vaccine locations with the increasing doses available.

 

  • According to CDC data, Arkansas has received 1,662,850 vaccine doses and has administered 1,153,739, for 69.4% of all doses. This means that 769,106 have received at least 1 dose and 407,828 have received 2 doses. These numbers are from the state distribution, federal programs through pharmacies and long-term care facilities, as well as federal distributions through departments located in Arkansas such as Veterans Affairs.

 

  • With these positive trends and low numbers, there is a tendency to think that Arkansas is doing fine and COVID is essentially not a problem. However, the number of cases with variants is increasing in Arkansas, and surrounding states have had increases in cases. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the CDC, says that the trends across the United States are worrying. Please continue to follow the 3 W’s, and get the vaccine as quickly as you can.

 

  • Asked about Biden’s request to not remove mask mandates and Dr. Walensky’s fear of “impending doom” with regards to the spread of COVID, Governor Hutchinson said that Arkansas set the goals, met them, and thus there was no need to keep the mandate in place. Arkansans know what needs to be done to protect themselves. The legislature voted yesterday to continue the emergency declaration, and that shows that they know this is a serious situation.

 

  • Although the state has lifted the statewide mask mandate, any municipalities are allowed to have mask mandates if they so choose. There is a model ordinance provided to the municipal league and those can be put in place if desired.

 

  • Asked if there were any case count or hospitalization numbers that would cause the state to reinstate a mask mandate, Governor Hutchinson said that he did not foresee a reinstatement, as the cases are low, vaccinations are increasing, and the state is getting closer to being able to function normally. The data will be looked at before any potential reinstatement of the mask mandate.

 

  • Although the mask mandate has been lifted, the emergency declaration’s liability waiver is still in place. If businesses continue to follow the state’s guidelines for the safety of their patrons, the liability waiver will continue to cover them.

 

  • Romero came up with guidelines last month for the lifting of the mask mandate and the state met them. So, while there is still desire for the state to be careful, he understands that what is best for the state is to lift the mandate now.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Although there were 15 deaths reported today, 7 of the deaths are delayed reports, that is, they occurred more than two weeks ago.

 

  • With the increasing supply of vaccine doses, there will be additional mass vaccine clinics across the state, which will be announced soon.

 

  • Recent numbers suggest that around 5% of patients who have received the first dose of vaccine have not received a second dose within recommended timelines, and that number is potentially increasing based on results. Patients need the second dose if they have received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine to be fully vaccinated.

 

  • Nationwide, there is an increase in cases and hospitalizations. Arkansas is not isolated and it is impossible to be stop these cases from affecting the state. It is imperative that Arkansans take this seriously and stay as safe as possible so that there is no significant increase. Continue to wear a mask when you leave your home and avoid large gatherings. Follow the CDC guidelines.

 

  • The state will monitor the case and hospitalization numbers to see if there is anything that needs to be done to deal with a potential new wave of COVID cases.

 

  • There are two variants currently spreading in Arkansas: the variants first found in the United Kingdom and in California. Because the testing needs to be done outside Arkansas at the CDC, there have only been a sampling of the cases tested, and 17 variant cases have been identified. Seven cases of the variant from the United Kingdom (B.1.1.7) found over the last few weeks, with the majority found in the last week. There are two variants from California (B.1.427 and B.1.429) have also been identified in 10 cases, with more over the last two weeks. B.1.427 and B.1.429 have the same increased transmissibility at B.1.1.7, but not the same increased lethality. Due to the variants being found here, the state will send more samples to the CDC to test.

 

  • Asked if Dr. Romero is also feeling the same sense of “impending doom” as Dr. Walensky, Dr. Romero said that he is concerned about the increase in cases and hospitalizations nationally. The state is not in imminent danger now, but they are working to create metrics to ensure that the state can react quickly if case counts increase.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • Across Arkansas, approximately 80% of students are receiving on-site instruction. With the end of the mask mandate, local districts can now decide whether they want to continue, modify, or eliminate the mask wearing policies through a formal vote. When reviewing policies, local boards of education should consider multiple situations, such as buses, lunchrooms, hallways, classrooms, activities, and special event spaces.

 

  • The American Rescue Plan Act requires that districts post for parents and the general public a plan for safe continuation of in-person learning and continuity of services. This plan should be developed in partnership with the Ready for Learning Committee and be posted by April 15 for public comment. This plan will be able to be modified based on those comments for the summer and fall semesters.

 

  • Quarantining of close contacts for schools depends on whether there is a mandatory mask policy in place. If there is no mask mandate in place, traditional quarantine guidelines apply in all situations. If a mask mandate is in place at the school and both the diagnosed person and the person exposed are wearing masks properly, then the close contact is not required to quarantine. If either the person who is diagnosed or the person exposed is not wearing a mask properly, then traditional quarantine rules apply.

 

  • Asked what a parent or student who objects to the school board’s decision on the mask mandate can do, Secretary Key said that school districts that do have a virtual option can allow them to attend classes virtually. The Ready for Learning Committee will work with school districts to handle these requests.

3/29/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 59 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 259,120 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 20 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,888 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,218 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 253,402 confirmed recoveries. There are 555 active probable cases and there have been 69,188 probable recoveries. The total of 1,773 active cases is down 288 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,470 confirmed and 1,131 probable, a combined increase of 18 since last Friday. There are 164 hospitalized patients with 28 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,581 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 147,478. Additionally, there were 245 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 55,452.

 

Arkansas has received 1,654,450 doses of vaccine, an increase of 54,640 from last Friday. A total of 971,620 inoculations have been given (58.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 31,712 since last Friday. The combined federal programs have received 268,430 doses of vaccine, no increase from last Friday, and have given 124,514 inoculations, an increase of 8,035 since last Friday, for 46.4% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 731,532 people or 30.8% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 390,079 or 16.4%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/26/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 106 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 258,881 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 78 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,814 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,370 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 253,029 confirmed recoveries. There are 691 active probable cases and there have been 68,979 probable recoveries. The total of 2,061 active cases is down 34 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,452 confirmed and 1,131 probable—increased by 12 since yesterday. There are 176 hospitalized patients with 32 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,135 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 137,544. Additionally, there were 885 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 53,167.

 

Arkansas has received 1,599,810 doses of vaccine, an increase of 32,150 from yesterday. A total of 939,908 inoculations have been given (58.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 21,418 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 268,430 doses of vaccine, an increase of 21,950 from yesterday, and have given 116,479 inoculations, an increase of 4,592 since yesterday, for 43.4% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 708,143 people or 29.8% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 371,359 or 15.6%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 50th in new cases and 19th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 26th in current hospitalizations, and 48th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/25/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 258 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 258,775 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 76 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,736 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,418 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 252,879 confirmed recoveries. There are 677 active probable cases and there have been 68,923 probable recoveries. The total of 2,095 active cases is down 33 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,448 confirmed and 1,123 probable—increased by 11 since yesterday. There are 181 hospitalized patients with 38 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,322 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 132,994. Additionally, there were 1,122 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 51,168.

 

Arkansas has received 1,567,660 doses of vaccine, an increase of 38,340 from yesterday. A total of 918,490 inoculations have been given (58.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 25,165 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 246,480 doses of vaccine, an increase of 15,900 from yesterday, and have given 111,887 inoculations, an increase of 3,793 since yesterday, for 45.4% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 692,953 people or 29.2% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 359,741 or 15.1%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/24/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 134 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 258,517 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 97 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,660 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,433 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 252,612 confirmed recoveries. There are 695 probable active cases and there have been 68,834 probable recoveries. The total of 2,128 active cases is down 135 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,442 confirmed and 1,118 probable, a combined increase of 13 since yesterday. There are 172 hospitalized patients with 43 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,154 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in March to 125,937. Additionally, there were 1,026 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 48,976 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 1,529,320 doses of vaccine, an increase of 2,100 from yesterday. A total of 893,325 inoculations have been given (58.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 19,031 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 230,580 doses of vaccine, an increase of 1,000 from yesterday, and have given 108,094 inoculations, an increase of 3,604 since yesterday, for 46.9% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 672,725 people or 28.3% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 349,739 or 14.7%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

3/23/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 119 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 258,383 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 120 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,563 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,527 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 252,393 confirmed recoveries. There are 736 active probable cases and there have been 68,700 probable recoveries. The total of 2,263 active cases is down 69 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,433 confirmed and 1,114 probable—increased by 3 since yesterday. There are 173 hospitalized patients with 40 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,315 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 118,786. Additionally, there were 1,150 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 46,149.

 

Arkansas has received 1,527,220 doses of vaccine, an increase of 68,670 from yesterday. A total of 874,294 inoculations have been given (57.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,387 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 229,580 doses of vaccine, an increase of 19,890 from yesterday, and have given 104,490 inoculations, an increase of 4,606 since yesterday, for 45.5% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 657,145 people or 27.7% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 340,719 or 14.3%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • According to the CDC, as of today, Arkansas has administered over one million vaccination doses. This number includes vaccines distributed through various state and federal programs, some of which are not included in the state numbers, such as the veterans healthcare system and the prison system.

 

  • Although testing numbers are low, this is likely a result of people not being afraid of having COVID due to the lower incidence in the state, not a large concern. Testing is expected to stay at this lower rate unless a spike occurs.

 

  • Vaccination numbers continue to be too low, in part due to lower demand. As the case count continues to be low, Arkansans are not as motivated to get the vaccine. Please sign up for an appointment as soon as possible if you are eligible to be vaccinated.

 

  • The case count in Arkansas is decreasing, but it would not take much to have the case count start to increase, so people need to continue to take the 3 W’s seriously and get vaccinated as soon as possible.

 

  • Arkansas will receive an additional increase in the number of vaccine doses this week, which was not expected.

 

  • The footage of spring break in Miami Beach is a concern, as those students will be going back to their homes and potentially spreading COVID across the country. If you have travelled, please get tested if you did not practice safety precautions.

 

  • With the lower testing numbers, the state has looked into conducting more surveillance testing, but there has been some resistance to that at schools. Many of the staff that had been doing testing is now working on vaccinations, so as resources become available, the state may attempt more surveillance testing. Testing is still being done at long-term care facilities.

 

  • Although vaccine reluctance is a reason for the slowness of vaccinations, in northwest Arkansas and urban areas, people in Phase 1-A, 1-B, and 1-C still cannot get appointments. This uneven distribution of vaccine interest is why the state has not moved to open vaccinations to all individuals over 16. Inmates in prison have not yet been fully vaccinated. The state expects to be able to offer vaccinations to all those over 16 in the near future.

 

  • The state is doing an extensive ad and educational campaign on TV, social media, and with influencers and community leaders to encourage more people to get vaccinated. They are also working with business leaders to set up vaccine clinics at large employers. Governor Hutchinson has challenged each of his cabinet secretaries to get 70% of their staff vaccinated.

 

  • The mask mandate is expected to be lifted on March 31, as the state is well below all the public health criteria needed to lift it. The state is working with businesses to ensure that they are aware of how the lifting of the mandate would affect them. They do not want to communicate that it is illegal to wear a mask at a business, but that businesses and schools are free to set the mask requirements to their comfort. It will be a full statewide lifting of the mandate. Cities will not be allowed to continue a mask mandate.

 

  • There is no plan to delay the lifting of the mask mandate due to the incubation period of spring breakers. The state recommends testing if they have not been able to be safe on their travels.

 

  • Due to lower vaccination doses two weeks ago in Northwest Arkansas, the state has distributed more doses there and has a mass vaccination clinic scheduled soon.

 

  • Yesterday, Governor Hutchinson vetoed the bill that would have refunded fines for businesses that violated public health guidelines during the pandemic. This was for both a separation of powers issue as well as to support the hard work of the public health professionals who have worked during the pandemic. The legislature allows the executive to enforce the law, and they cannot decide afterwards that the enforcement was unacceptable and undue it. It is also an issue of fairness for those businesses that did work to comply with the guidelines, and it would be counterproductive to allow those that didn’t to face no penalty.

 

  • Asked about reports that around 25,000 Arkansans have still not received unemployment insurance payments for months due to delayed approval by the state, Governor Hutchinson said there are a significant amount that are based on what is believed to be fraudulent claims. The state doesn’t want to distribute funds based on fraud. The National Guard has been brought in to help expedite the claims.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • It is very important that the state doesn’t have any spike in COVID cases due to travel during spring break. If you have any symptoms or you think you may have been exposed to COVID, please get tested.

 

  • The biggest concerns with regard to vaccinations are vaccine hesitancy and the lower case numbers, hospitalizations, and deaths causing complacency. We don’t wait for a measles outbreak or for the middle of flu season to vaccinate for measles or the flu, and we shouldn’t wait for another COVID spike to get vaccinated for COVID. We cannot safely fully open the state unless we get more people vaccinated.

 

  • The vaccines are safe and efficacious. There is a vaccine that only takes one dose if you do not want to get two shots. Please get vaccinated.

 

Dr. Margie Scott: Director, Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System

  • All eligible veterans enrolled in VA Health Care are now eligible to get a COVID vaccine. There is no more restriction based on age, health status, or employment.

 

  • Veterans can receive the vaccine doses at three sites in Arkansas. The main location is at John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital and is available Monday through Friday from 7:30am to 4:30pm, with walk-ins welcome until 2:30pm. There will be a drive-through vaccine clinic at Fort Roots in North Little Rock Monday through Sunday from 7:30am to 6pm. Additionally, any VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic can also vaccinate veterans with an appointment on rotating days.

 

  • Over 20,000 vaccinations have been given at CAVHS. Nearly 14,000 have received their first shot, and more than 6,500 have been fully vaccinated. Including the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks in Fayetteville and the CAVHS, more than 26,000 veterans and staff have been vaccinated by the VA.

 

  • The COVID vaccine is safe and effective. It will not get you sick. The side effects are minor. It will not alter your DNA. It is safe, effective, and free to enrolled veterans.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • There has not been a district that has shifted to virtual learning since the first week of February.

 

  • The state is working to enforce the current CDC guidance at schools with regards to the distance between desks

3/22/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 40 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 258,264 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 12 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,443 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,610 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 252,197 confirmed recoveries. There are 722 active probable cases and there have been 68,593 probable recoveries. The total of 2,332 active cases is down 331 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,428 confirmed and 1,116 probable, a combined increase of 15 since last Friday. There are 184 hospitalized patients with 42 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,756 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 115,813. Additionally, there were 132 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 40,110.

 

Arkansas has received 1,458,550 doses of vaccine, an increase of 59,630 from last Friday. A total of 859,907 inoculations have been given (59.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 28,872 since last Friday. The combined federal programs have received 209,690 doses of vaccine, no increase from last Friday, and have given 99,884 inoculations, an increase of 6,393 since last Friday, for 47.6% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 644,341 people or 27.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 333,753 or 14.1%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/19/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 155 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 257,954 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 73 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,319 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,823 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 251,698 confirmed recoveries. There are 840 active probable cases and there have been 68,353 probable recoveries. The total of 2,663 active cases is down 71 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,413 confirmed and 1,116 probable—increased by 14 since yesterday. There are 233 hospitalized patients with 50 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,430 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 103,428. Additionally, there were 992 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 36,461.

 

Arkansas has received 1,398,920 doses of vaccine, an increase of 38,140 from yesterday. A total of 831,035 inoculations have been given (59.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 16,005 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 209,690 doses of vaccine, an increase of 15,610 from yesterday, and have given 93,491 inoculations, an increase of 5,540 since yesterday, for 44.6% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 618,819 people or 26.1% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 320,980 or 13.5%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 48th in new cases and 7th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 26th in current hospitalizations, and 49th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/18/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 170 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 257,799 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 94 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,246 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,874 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 251,506 confirmed recoveries. There are 860 active probable cases and there have been 68,265 probable recoveries. The total of 2,734 active cases is down 74 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,404 confirmed and 1,111 probable—increased by 8 since yesterday. There are 245 hospitalized patients with 47 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,574 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 97,417. Additionally, there were 1,165 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 34,597.

 

Arkansas has received 1,360,780 doses of vaccine, an increase of 31,610 from yesterday. A total of 815,030 inoculations have been given (59.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 19,643 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 194,080 doses of vaccine, an increase of 19,700 from yesterday, and have given 87,951 inoculations, an increase of 2,988 since yesterday, for 45.3% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 601,289 people or 25.3% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 315,336 or 13.3%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

Governor Asa Hutchinson has activated 20 members of the Arkansas Air and Army National Guard to assist with vaccinations in four public health regions in Arkansas. These four teams will administer the vaccines in rural areas, which will reduce the load for medical professionals who are dealing with COVID-19 as well as their regular health care concerns. Each of the four teams will include two medics and two personnel to handle logistics and documentation.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/17/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 180 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 257,629 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 145 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,152 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 1,942 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 251,276 confirmed recoveries. There are 866 probable active cases and there have been 68,169 probable recoveries. The total of 2,808 active cases is down 67 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,400 confirmed and 1,107 probable, a combined increase of 14 since yesterday. There are 260 hospitalized patients with 54 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,301 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in March to 89,315. Additionally, there were 1,261 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 32,327 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 1,329,170 doses of vaccine, an increase of 3,970 from yesterday. A total of 795,387 inoculations have been given (59.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,039 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 174,380 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 84,963 inoculations, an increase of 2,431 since yesterday, for 48.7% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 581,897 people or 24.5% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 309,028 or 13.0%. Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

3/16/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 211 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 257,449 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 185 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 70,007 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,048 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 251,003 confirmed recoveries. There are 827 active probable cases and there have been 68,064 probable recoveries. The total of 2,875 active cases is up 12 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,387 confirmed and 1,106 probable—increased by 12 since yesterday. There are 257 hospitalized patients with 58 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,614 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 82,419. Additionally, there were 1,616 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 29,496.

 

Arkansas has received 1,325,200 doses of vaccine, an increase of 80,980 from yesterday. A total of 781,348 inoculations have been given (59.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,425 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 174,380 doses of vaccine, an increase of 9,360 from yesterday, and have given 82,532 inoculations, an increase of 2,472 since yesterday, for 47.3% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 568,938 people or 24.0% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 303,823 or 12.8%. As of today, Arkansas is in phase 1-C of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • With the new vaccinations yesterday, 10% of the entire Arkansas population have been fully vaccinated. When looking at just the 65+ population in Arkansas, 55% have received at least one dose and 27% have been fully vaccinated.

 

  • Arkansas is now opening up vaccinations to all those in Phase 1-C. This includes those age 16 to 64 with health conditions that increase their risk for severe COVID, as well as essential workers in the following industries: energy, finance, food service, information technology and communications, legal, media, public health and human services, public safety, shelter and housing, and transportation and logistics. Additionally, those who reside in high risk settings, such as those who are incarcerated or detained, those living in group homes, congregate settings, or crowded housing, as well as student housing including dorms and Greek housing, are also now eligible.

 

  • The increase in eligibility is a result of President Biden calling on states to allow all adults to be eligible to be vaccinated by May 1, and will increase the amount of doses sent to the states to help increase the availability. Although not everyone in Phase 1-B is vaccinated, moving on to Phase 1-C will ensure that demand is high and there are no empty appointments. In the rural areas of the state, there has been a decrease in demand, meaning there will now be more people who can take those appointments. Urban areas are still high demand, but all areas should have the same eligibility, and so the full state is opened to Phase 1-C. There is also lower vaccine acceptance rate in the rural areas which needs to be overcome.

 

  • Just because vaccinations have been opened to those in Phase 1-C, those in the category shouldn’t expect to get a vaccine appointment this week, or even next week. There are an additional 1,000,000 people in this group, and there are not enough vaccine doses coming in for everyone to get an appointment. Arkansas is receiving around 85,000 doses a week, so please be patient. The federal government says that there will be only an increase of 150,000 doses for the entire country this week.

 

  • Call 1-800-985-6030 to reach the state vaccine call-line and the responders will let you know where to call to get an appointment.

 

  • Asked why rural areas are lagging in vaccine acceptance, Governor Hutchinson said that because the case counts tend to be lower in those areas, they may not see the same level of risk as those who live in more populated areas. However, just because there may not be that many cases in rural areas, doesn’t mean that people don’t travel and that it isn’t in the interest of all Arkansans everywhere for everyone to be fully vaccinated as quickly as possible.

 

  • Asked if there had been any more guidance on how the American Rescue Plan funding would be spent with regards to current legislation, Governor Hutchinson said they had not heard anything more. The U.S. Treasury department will be setting forth guidance, but it should not change the tax cuts that Governor Hutchinson has proposed. Although there is language in the ARA that would not allow the funding to offset any tax cuts directly or indirectly, nothing has yet been finalized about what that means.

 

  • Asked about spring break travel leading to an increase in cases being a concern, Governor Hutchinson said that anyone who travels should be tested. The mask mandate lifting is still on target, as long as the case and hospitalization numbers continue to be low. Concerns about spring break travel will not affect that, unless there is an increase in cases and hospitalizations.

 

  • Asked about his position on SB 301 which would refund any fines levied on businesses that did not comply with COVID guidelines, Governor Hutchinson said he is troubled by legislative overreach into how the executive and judicial branches can function on rule-making in regard to state laws passed by the legislature. Governor Hutchinson opposes the bill, but has not yet made a decision about what to do now that the bill is on his desk.

 

  • Many of the unadministered doses of vaccine are second doses and there will be a greater supply of those as the state receives more doses each week. There will also always be a delay in the state receiving it to then be administered. Governor Hutchinson said that if they had a mass vaccination clinic in Little Rock, they could get the administered dose percent up to 85% from 60%, but it wouldn’t be fair and would just be an attempt to increase that number without being equitable to the more rural areas of Arkansas.

 

  • Asked about the new bill that would revise the emergency powers act in Arkansas, Governor Hutchinson said he worked with the legislature to ensure that any changes with the bill would be acceptable to all those involved. The change to force the legislature to vote to remove the emergency declaration rather than to require a vote to put one in place was a major change that Governor Hutchinson requested. He will sign the bill when it arrives on his desk.

 

  • Asked if opening to Phase 1-C with lax enforcement of proof of underlying medical conditions meant that essentially anyone in Arkansas could now get the vaccine, Governor Hutchinson said that it is not open to anyone. Providers and citizens should follow the CDC guidelines, even if it is on the honor system, to help their fellow Arkansans who need the vaccine.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Although the cases have decreased, the state is at a plateau right now, and could go either direction. Please keep wearing your mask, social distancing, and washing your hands.

 

  • Please get your vaccine if you are eligible. The state is targeting those areas where there is some vaccine hesitancy. All three vaccines are safe, have been tested, and are equally effective at preventing deaths and serious hospitalizations.

 

  • The state needs to get above 70% for herd immunity, and the state is far from that right now.

 

  • Asked if there are concerns about the low testing numbers meaning that the state may be missing cases, Dr. Romero said that the lower testing numbers are partially a result of lower number of symptomatic cases. There are also probably fewer untested cases now than there have been in the past. Lower hospitalization numbers are also a sign of lower spread in the community.

 

Lorrie Trogden: President and CEO, Arkansas Bankers Association

  • Operation VaxSpeed is starting today, with a partnership between the Arkansas Pharmacists Association and the Arkansans Bankers Association. This partnership is offering unused spaces at banks across the state so that pharmacies can have more capacity to vaccinate Arkansans. There are several clinics already scheduled, and more are being added each day. These appointments are still through the pharmacies, so please contact them as you would for a normal vaccination appointment.

3/12/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 345 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 256,864 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 114 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 69,635 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,351 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 250,150 confirmed recoveries. There are 807 active probable cases and there have been 67,733 probable recoveries. The total of 3,158 active cases is up 14 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,352 confirmed and 1,085 probable—increased by 27 since yesterday. There are 259 hospitalized patients with 64 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,105 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 66,695. Additionally, there were 1,030 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 22,074.

 

Arkansas has received 1,217,310 doses of vaccine, an increase of 8,010 from yesterday. A total of 743,791 inoculations have been given (61.1% of available doses). This represents an increase of 18,815 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 165,020 doses of vaccine, an increase of 12,870 from yesterday, and have given 72,606 inoculations, an increase of 7,788 since yesterday, for 44.0% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 531,262 people or 22.4% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 285,090 or 12.0%. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 45th in new cases and 3rd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 17th in current hospitalizations, and 45th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/11/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 250 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 256,519 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 90 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 69,521 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,293 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 249,873 confirmed recoveries. There are 851 active probable cases and there have been 67,592 probable recoveries. The total of 3,144 active cases is down 83 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,342 confirmed and 1,068 probable—increased by 28 since yesterday. There are 278 hospitalized patients with 67 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,316 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 58,444. Additionally, there were 1,040 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 19,781.

 

Arkansas has received 1,209,300 doses of vaccine, an increase of 46,970 from yesterday. A total of 724,976 inoculations have been given (60.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,395 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 152,150 doses of vaccine, an increase of 16,600 from yesterday, and have given 64,818 inoculations, an increase of 2,523 since yesterday, for 42.6% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 507,693 people or 21.4% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 281,890 or 11.9%. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/10/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 192 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 256,269 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 125 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 69,431 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,332 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 249,594 confirmed recoveries. There are 895 probable active cases and there have been 67,476 probable recoveries. The total of 3,227 active cases is down 234 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,332 confirmed and 1,050 probable, a combined increase of 25 since yesterday. There are 301 hospitalized patients with 72 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,599 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in March to 50,221. Additionally, there were 941 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 17,423 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 1,162,330 doses of vaccine, an increase of 3,700 from yesterday. A total of 709,581 inoculations have been given (61.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,129 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 135,550 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 62,295 inoculations, an increase of 2,696 since yesterday, for 46.0% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 494,668 people or 20.8% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 277,008 or 11.7%. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

3/9/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 241 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 256,077 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 191 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 69,306 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,516 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 249,229 confirmed recoveries. There are 945 active probable cases and there have been 67,315 probable recoveries. The total of 3,461 active cases is down 132 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,321 confirmed and 1,036 probable—increased by 14 since yesterday. There are 317 hospitalized patients with 71 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,535 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 43,211. Additionally, there were 1,720 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 15,133.

 

Arkansas has received 1,158,630 doses of vaccine, an increase of 70,480 from yesterday. A total of 697,452 inoculations have been given (60.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,172 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 135,550 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 59,599 inoculations, an increase of 1,675 since yesterday, for 44.0% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/8/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 110 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 255,836 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 23 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 69,115 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,657 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 248,853 confirmed recoveries. There are 936 active probable cases and there have been 67,147 probable recoveries. The total of 3,593 active cases is down 703 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,315 confirmed and 1,028 probable, a combined increase of 24 since yesterday. There are 338 hospitalized patients with 74 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,345 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 39,336. Additionally, there were 201 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 11,920.

 

Arkansas has received 1,088,150 doses of vaccine, an increase of 23,230 from last Friday. A total of 684,280 inoculations have been given (62.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 31,035 since last Friday. The combined federal programs have received 135,550 doses of vaccine, no increase from last Friday, and have given 57,924 inoculations, an increase of 4,470 since last Friday, for 42.7% of available doses. Arkansas has partially vaccinated 472,802 people or 15.76% of the 16 and older population and fully vaccinated 269,218 or 8.98%. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • All people in Phase 1B are now eligible to be vaccinated. This means that those in manufacturing facilities, public transportation, essential government services such as legislators, staff, and court employees, and other essential workers are now eligible to be vaccinated. The court personnel who are eligible are those included in the Arkansas Chief Justice’s list. Although the court ordered court employees to jump ahead in the line, that had no bearing on the state moving them into the eligible population. It cannot be the case that people unilaterally decide that they need to skip ahead of other people in line for vaccines. Over the weekend, multiple vaccine clinics did not have the demand expected and thus there was need for more people to be eligible for the vaccine. In order to fulfill the goal of getting doses into the arms of Arkansans within 72 hours of the doses being made available, there needs to be an increase in demand. Opening the vaccine to these additional categories will add another 180,000 Arkansans to the eligible list.

 

  • Additionally, the state is moving those with intellectual or developmental disabilities to Phase 1B and making them eligible for the vaccine immediately. They are a vulnerable population, but are a relatively small number, as many have already been vaccinated due to many being housed in long-term care facilities.

 

  • Eligible people include all those who are 65 years and older, or work in education, police, fire, and other first responders, corrections workers, food and agriculture workers, people with intellectual or developmental disabilities, essential government workers, grocery store and meal delivery workers, postal service and package delivery workers, public transit workers, workers at houses of worship, and manufacturing workers.

 

  • The state has started a statewide vaccination phone line today. The statewide toll-free telephone number is 1-800-985-6030, and the hours are 8am to 6pm, Monday through Friday. At least twenty call operators will schedule appointments for ADH and health equity clinics, as well as providing information on pharmacies and other providers around the state that may have vaccination availability. The first of these clinics will be in Conway, Arkansas on Wednesday, March 10. Translation services will be available as needed. This is supplementary to the current system of calling pharmacies for appointments. It has been created to provide individuals who do not have internet with another option to access vaccine appointments.

 

  • If it is your turn to get a vaccination, please be patient. Although the state is expecting at least 100,000 new doses this week, adding another 180,000 Arkansans to the eligible list means that not everyone will be able to get an appointment this week. It may take a week or two before you can get an appointment. The state is still on track to meet its goal to vaccinate everyone in Phase 1B by the end of March.

 

  • If you have added your name to multiple pharmacies’ lists and you have received a vaccine dose, please remove yourself from all other lists. This will help lessen the need for pharmacy workers to struggle to find people for these appointments.

 

  • If you are eligible to be vaccinated, please schedule an appointment to do so. This will help lower case numbers as well as ensure that all doses are used. If everyone in Phase 1B gets vaccinated, then the state can move on to Phase 1C in April and help save more lives.

 

  • Although there are three different vaccines, please take whatever vaccine is available, as the efficacy is similar.

 

  • Asked if there were concerns that the empty spots at the vaccine clinics were due to lower demand than expected and whether the lower than expected demand was even across the state, Governor Hutchinson said that the demand did vary across the state, at multiple clinics. The Jonesboro clinic had 3,000 spots but did not even fill 2,000 of those slots. Those doses will be distributed, but more people being eligible will help ensure that people get vaccines as quickly as possible. The state is moving through the eligible population faster than expected, even compared to what was planned last week.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • As stated by the federal government, there should be sufficient vaccine availability so that everyone who wants a vaccine can receive it by the end of May. There will be a large supply increase over the coming months.

 

  • The CDC has released new rules for those who have been fully vaccinated. Fully vaccinated people can now safely meet with those who are (1) not high risk or (2) haven’t been vaccinated if they meet in public while still wearing a mask. If you have been vaccinated and you have come into contact with someone with COVID, you do not have to quarantine unless you are showing symptoms.

 

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

 

  • Arkansas received more Johnson and Johnson vaccine than was expected; however, they do not expect more Johnson and Johnson vaccine for the next two weeks. The current supply will be used to vaccinate a large portion of the food industry workers. As more doses arrive in the state, due to Merck stepping in to help produce more vaccine, they hope to finish food industry workers and allow others to receive Johnson and Johnson vaccine doses.

 

  • There have only been 234 doses wasted throughout the entire vaccine program. Most of that was in the long-term care facility program where patients or staff have either not been available or refused the dose, and those doses cannot be quickly reassigned.

3/5/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 422 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 255,365 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 148 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 68,961 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 3,013 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 248,050 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,283 active probable cases and there have been 66,682 probable recoveries. The total of 4,296 active cases is up 35 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,291 confirmed and 992 probable—increased by 10 since yesterday. There are 359 hospitalized patients with 86 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,421 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 26,736. Additionally, there were 1,200 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 9,518.

 

Arkansas has received 1,064,920 doses of vaccine, an increase of 65,680 from yesterday. A total of 653,245 inoculations have been given (61.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 16,955 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 135,550 doses of vaccine, an increase of 16,380 from yesterday, and have given 53,454 inoculations, an increase of 2,547 since yesterday, for 39.4% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 38th in new cases and 35th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 10th in current hospitalizations, and 36th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/4/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 306 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 254,943 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 97 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 68,813 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,930 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 247,719 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,331 active probable cases and there have been 66,488 probable recoveries. The total of 4,261 active cases is down 17 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,283 confirmed and 990 probable—increased by 12 since yesterday. There are 372 hospitalized patients with 85 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,154 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in March to 17,534. Additionally, there were 1,331 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 6,958.

 

Arkansas has received 999,240 doses of vaccine, an increase of 21,530 from yesterday. A total of 636,290 inoculations have been given (63.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,571 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 119,170 doses of vaccine, an increase of 28,100 from yesterday, and have given 50,907 inoculations, an increase of 4,847 since yesterday, for 42.7% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

After the Arkansas Supreme Court ordered judges, as well as some prosecutors and court employees, to be declared essential workers and become immediately eligible to receive a COVID vaccine, Governor Hutchinson released this statement: “I appreciate the Supreme Court’s concern for judges and staff members of the court system and for attorneys whose cases require them to work in person at a court house. Our schedule for vaccinations takes into account the needs and risk level for all Arkansans, and this group is not yet eligible in the 1B phase. As our allocation of vaccine increases, we will be able to move more quickly, but currently, court employees who don’t otherwise qualify for a shot will have to wait for their eligibility.”

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1, 2020. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

3/3/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 284 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 254,637 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 120 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 68,716 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,862 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 247,492 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,416 probable active cases and there have been 66,307 probable recoveries. The total of 4,278 active cases is up 24 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,272 confirmed and 989 probable, a combined increase of 7 since yesterday. There are 397 hospitalized patients with 91 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,251 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in March to 8,553. Additionally, there were 1,197 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 3,921 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 977,710 doses of vaccine, an increase of 1,800 from yesterday. A total of 622,719 inoculations have been given (63.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,664 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 91,070 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 46,060 inoculations, an increase of 2,413 since yesterday, for 50.6% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

3/2/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 225 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 254,353 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 215 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 68,596 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,827 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 247,250 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,427 active probable cases and there have been 66,176 probable recoveries. The total of 4,254 active cases is up 12 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,265 confirmed and 989 probable—increased by 4 since yesterday. There are 416 hospitalized patients with 80 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,121 PCR tests were performed. Additionally, there were 1,873 antigen tests performed yesterday.

 

Arkansas has received 975,910 doses of vaccine, an increase of 73,890 from yesterday. A total of 609,055 inoculations have been given (62.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,147 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 91,070 doses of vaccine, an increase of 3,510 from yesterday, and have given 43,647 inoculations, an increase of 955 since yesterday, for 47.9% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

 

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • There are approximately 520,000 people yet to be vaccinated in the Phase 1B category. The state has been receiving around 82,000 doses per week. With four more weeks in March, we would only have 328,000 doses, which is short of the amount needed to vaccinate all the remaining people in Phase 1B. However, vaccine doses have been increasing week over week, so that 328,000 dose number is expected to increase. If the state only needs to vaccinate 70% of those in Phase 1B to move into Phase 1C, that would only be 364,000 vaccinations by the end of March, which is possible. The goal is achievable, even after the state added those 65 and older to Phase 1B, increasing the number in the group by 100,000 residents.

 

  • With this success, Arkansas has continued to expand those who are eligible to receive the vaccine to additional groups in Phase 1B, including food manufacturing workers, such as meat processing and grain and oilseed milling workers. That is an additional 49,000 added to the eligible list, and clinics may be arranged through the worksites. These workers are also eligible to receive vaccines through pharmacies and clinics around the state.

 

  • After a call with the federal COVID-19 task force, an additional 700,000 doses were added to the nationwide number of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, which will provide about 3,000 more doses to the Arkansas distribution this week.

 

  • The Johnson and Johnson vaccine has also been approved for emergency use authorization by the FDA. This means that Arkansas will receive 24,000 doses later this week.

 

  • Arkansas will set up vaccine clinics across the state for those eligible to be vaccinated, with one location in each of the five public health regions each week. They will be set up in counties with low vaccine uptake. For the initial clinics, they will be first-come, first-served, and reservations will be available for future vaccine clinics. There will be no out-of-pocket expense, but residents should bring their insurance card if they have insurance. There will be another clinic three or four weeks later for the second dose, depending on the vaccine type. The Arkansas Department of Health website will have the locations for the clinics when they are set. The initial counties for these clinics will be Lee (Southeast), Mississippi (Northeast), Dallas (Southwest), Pulaski (Central), and Conway (Northwest).

 

  • Currently, Arkansas has fully vaccinated 24.7%, with 50% having received at least one dose, of the total population of 70+ Arkansans. This is partly good news, but it shows at least some resistance to the vaccine. Arkansas needs to increase the numbers so that the state can move forward to vaccinate the next groups.

 

  • The CDC has confirmed a case of the variant first found in the United Kingdom here in Arkansas. This variant is more contagious than the current strain. Finding this variant was expected, but it is mostly a warning to be cautious and follow the 3 W’s: wear a mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance.

 

  • The reason for adding food processing workers to the vaccine-eligible population is due to the inability to distance while at work as well as where spikes of cases happened last year.

 

  • Restaurant workers will be vaccinated in Phase 1C, even as the state has moved into allowing more capacity in bars and restaurants. Although some businesses have moved almost to full capacity, it is strongly discouraged. Arkansans should not patronize bars and restaurants that are not being safe and allowing social distancing and requiring mask wearing among workers.

 

  • Although Dr. Fauci and the CDC have said that it may be necessary to wear a mask until 2022, Governor Hutchinson said that potentially removing the mask mandate at the end of March is still on target. While the Governor has received the vaccine, he still wears a mask due to the continuing uncertainty as to whether it is possible to spread COVID even after being vaccinated.

 

  • Asked if the presence of the variant in the state would affect the repeal of the mask mandate at the end of March, Governor Hutchinson said they presumed the variant was already in the state, and thus there will not be any change purely due to the presence of the variant. The mask mandate will be repealed according to the previously announced criteria of hospitalizations and positive percentage.

 

  • Asked about reports that some Arkansans haven’t received unemployment insurance for weeks, Governor Hutchinson said that the Department of Workforce Services has been working hard to ensure that there is no fraud as well as helping to ensure that those who are eligible receive their benefits as quickly as possible.

 

  • Asked why the state has only been adding groups of Phase 1B one at a time as well as what groups would be likely to be first in Phase 1C, Governor Hutchinson said that this process was used to ensure that the system is not overwhelmed. Phase 1C may not be added one group at a time, but the process depends entirely upon the supply of vaccine available.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Yesterday, the FDA and the ACIP authorized the Johnson and Johnson vaccine for use. This vaccine is highly effective at preventing deaths and hospitalizations. It appears to be as safe as the current vaccines, but with distribution to a much larger population than the study, it is possible there may be some anaphylactic reactions. The advantage of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine is that it can be stored at room temperature as well as giving immunity after one dose.

 

  • Once the fully vaccinated percentages hit 70%, that is considered “herd immunity”, and the state will start to expand access to additional groups.

 

  • With regards to the new variant, it is a reminder, whether or not a mask mandate is in place, to wear your mask. Wearing your mask will help you stop the spread, as well as make sure that if you are eligible to get vaccinated, to do so.

 

  • Asked why Arkansas is not vaccinating those with underlying conditions and forcing them to go to another state that will vaccinate them, Dr. Romero said that by adding 65 to 69 to the eligible population, they would be getting many of those most vulnerable vaccinated. Those with comorbidities are still in Phase 1C due to the availability of the vaccine, and as more doses become available, their place in the line may be adjusted.

 

  • Asked for more specifics on the variant case, Dr. Romero said that due to HIPAA regulations, only that the case was found in the state and any other information cannot be released.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • Most Arkansas schools that were affected by the winter storm have been able to fix the damage and return to on-site learning.

 

  • The recent CDC guidance for school re-opening has paralleled what Arkansas schools have already set up for on-site learning. Although case counts have decreased, it is not time to let up on mask wearing and social distancing yet to ensure that the school year and sports can be completed safely.

 

Dr. Mike Cima: Epidemiologist, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Asked about the data dump of thousands of cases this past weekend, Dr. Cima said that they did quality control on the data which showed issues which were then brought to the attention of the stakeholders across the state. Once the stakeholders were made aware of the issues, they transmitted corrected data and the state released it. This is not the first time that they have had a data dump.

3/1/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

On Sunday, February 28, 2021, the Arkansas Department of Health announced that it had cleaned up data it had received, reclassifying some deaths, removing duplicate deaths and vaccine doses administered, as well as adding almost 3,000 cases to the state count from before the last two weeks. This caused a significant spike in the case count in yesterday’s data, and a drop in the death and vaccine count. None of this is as a result of the winter storm.

 

There have been 98 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 254,128 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There was a decrease of 4 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 68,381 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,882 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 246,978 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,360 active probable cases and there have been 66,024 probable recoveries. The total of 4,242 active cases is down 237 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,257 confirmed and 993 probable, a combined increase of 7 since yesterday. There are 441 hospitalized patients with 84 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,752 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 187,501. Additionally, there were 86 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 83,885.

 

Arkansas has received 902,020 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 593,908 inoculations have been given (65.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 8,123 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 87,560 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 42,692 inoculations, an increase of 744 since yesterday, for 48.8% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/26/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 412 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 251,711 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 104 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 66,927 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,994 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 244,346 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,485 active probable cases and there have been 64,379 probable recoveries. The total of 4,479 active cases is down 241 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,348 confirmed and 1,059 probable—increased by 10 since yesterday. There are 504 hospitalized patients with 98 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,443 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 169,210. Additionally, there were 1,640 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 79,279.

 

Arkansas has received 870,590 doses of vaccine, an increase of 35,000 from yesterday. A total of 560,854 inoculations have been given (64.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 20,816 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 79,460 doses of vaccine, an increase of 9,100 from yesterday, and have given 41,805 inoculations, an increase of 3,324 since yesterday, for 52.6% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 27th in new cases and 32nd in new deaths over the last 7 days, 9th in current hospitalizations, and 37th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

 

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • In consultation with the Department of Health, the public health emergency has been extended for another 30 days until March 31. This includes the mask mandate, Medicaid reimbursement for telehealth, business liability protections, remote learning for schools, and other executive orders that have been necessary due to the pandemic. This extension is needed because the legislature has not moved quickly enough to put these into legislation.

 

  • Progress has been made on both cases and vaccinations, so Arkansas cannot slow down the progress. On March 31, the mask mandate may expire if certain goals are met. These include a 7-day average of an under 10% positive rate with PCR and antigen testing if there are at least 7,500 tests per day. If testing is below 7,500 tests, then if the number of patients hospitalized is below 750 would be the trigger. If the mask mandate is not renewed, it will move to a mask recommendation.

 

  • Effective today, all public health directives have been converted into public health guidance. A directive, based on scientific data and a rational basis, is a mandate like an order with potential penalty after due process. A guidance, based on scientific data, is a strong recommendation based on medical advice. As an example of this, the previous directives regarding restaurant capacity will become a guidance, so that there will no longer be a penalty if they are not followed.

 

  • These changes are to show that there is a roadmap for moving to a more normal existence. State government will continue to strongly encourage that people follow distancing recommendations. Businesses cannot go back to normal without following the guidance, as they would forfeit their business liability insurance protections.

 

  • Although directives are being changed into guidelines, quarantines and other actions to protect yourself from COVID are still in place, and no one should assume they can go back to normal immediately. The public health emergency is still in place, and so the state has a month to see if the progress is going to continue or if they might have to revisit any steps made and reinstate the directives.

 

  • Most districts have adopted local board policies to require the mask mandate and social distancing. This can remain in place at the discretion of local school boards. The guidance on capacity and social distancing will allow for proms, athletic events, graduation, and other extracurricular events to be held. It will negate the assurance documents districts filed with the state. Quarantine guidance and the need to identify close contacts will not change.

 

  • Asked why the state has changed these from requirements to optional, Governor Hutchinson said that they cannot keep the directives in place forever and that this allows businesses to adjust to other safe practices without fear of being reported by patrons for fines.

 

  • Asked what will happen to businesses if the legislature refunds fines and then go back to 100% capacity because there is no penalty for it anymore, Governor Hutchinson said he opposes any movement to refund fines as that would undermine public confidence in any enforcement and would not sign it into law if it did pass. The business liability protection will be the incentive to encourage businesses to follow the guidelines even without a penalty.

 

  • Asked how the state will handle potential for spread if different school districts keep the mask mandate in place and some don’t, Governor Hutchinson said that he calls on all schools to follow the mask mandate until the end of March and then to follow the guidance afterwards. If schools can keep the spread down without the mandate, then this gives them the ability to do so without penalty from the state.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • These changes are due to the decrease in cases and hospitalizations. There is also a system in place to monitor for any changes so that the state can handle an increase in cases and hospitalizations. No one should change their behavior because of these adjustments in the public health recommendations. The COVID variants have not been found in Arkansas. Even so, the state is monitoring new cases to identify any variant strains and their contribution to any increase in cases and deaths.

 

The only way to move out of this pandemic is for everyone to take the vaccine when it is available.

2/25/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 574 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 251,299 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 152 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 66,823 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 3,094 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 243,843 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,626 active probable cases and there have been 64,135 probable recoveries. The total of 4,720 active cases is up 44 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,339 confirmed and 1,058 probable—increased by 10 since yesterday. There are 522 hospitalized patients with 108 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,548 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 162,198. Additionally, there were 1,182 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 76,037.

 

Arkansas has received 835,590 doses of vaccine, an increase of 18,860 from yesterday. A total of 540,038 inoculations have been given (64.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 22,593 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 70,360 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 38,481 inoculations, an increase of 2,922 since yesterday, for 54.7% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/24/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 459 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 250,725 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 344 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 66,671 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 2,968 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 23,404 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,708 probable active cases and there have been 63,902 probable recoveries. The total of 4,676 active cases is down 131 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,330 confirmed and 1,057 probable, a combined increase of 10 since yesterday. There are 496 hospitalized patients with 100 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,425 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in February to 152,215. Additionally, there were 1,193 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 72,955 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 816,730 doses of vaccine, an increase of 22,500 from yesterday. A total of 517,445 inoculations have been given (63.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 16,531 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 70,360 doses of vaccine, an increase of 9,360 from yesterday, and have given 35,559 inoculations, an increase of 1,994 since yesterday, for 50.5% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the State. The blue line is the 7-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the 7-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

2/23/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 419 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 250,266 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 415 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 66,327 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 3,174 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 242,748 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,633 active probable cases and there have been 63,634 probable recoveries. The total of 4,807 active cases is down 92 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,321 confirmed and 1,055 probable—increased by 14 since yesterday. There are 545 hospitalized patients with 99 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,499 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 145,257. Additionally, there were 2,101 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 69,594.

 

Arkansas has received 794,230 doses of vaccine, an increase of 102,705 from yesterday. A total of 500,914 inoculations have been given (63.1% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,702 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 33,565, an increase of 1,537 since yesterday, for 55.0% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

 

Governor Hutchinson

 

  • Arkansas has lowered the flags to half-mast for the 500,000 deaths due to COVID, following the proclamation by President Biden.

 

  • Starting today, the age threshold for vaccinations has been lowered to 65 from 70, which means that an additional 115,000 Arkansans are now eligible to be vaccinated. They will be able to get appointments the same way previous groups have been able to get vaccinated. As the state has received 102,705 doses yesterday and more will be coming in the next few weeks, Arkansas is still on track to fulfill the goal of vaccinating everyone in Phase 1B before the end of March.

 

  • After a meeting with the federal Coronavirus task force, the federal government will distribute an additional one million doses next week across the country, above and beyond the previous increased number of doses. That means that Arkansas will receive an additional 4,000 doses, which will be guaranteed over the next three weeks. There will be an additional distribution to the federal pharmacy program, but it will only be around 100,000 doses. Governor Hutchinson is happy that the federal government has decided to allow the states to distribute the vast majority of doses as they have the best ability to ensure the most equitable distribution of doses.

 

  • This weekend, the FDA will rule on the emergency authorization for the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, which would allow for an additional two million doses of vaccine released starting next week.

 

  • There are two main thrusts of the vaccine: to keep essential services functioning and to save lives. The former is why educators were moved up, as education is so important to support. The latter is mostly a result of deaths in the older category and so vaccinating them will help decrease deaths due to COVID.

 

  • The supply of vaccine will determine when the next group of people will become eligible for vaccination. If the doses coming from the federal government continue to increase, new groups will be added to the eligible list sooner. When they have moved through a significant amount of those currently eligible and demand decreases, the state will open more groups to be eligible for the vaccine.

 

  • It is still necessary to extend the current state of emergency in Arkansas due to COVID. It expires on February 27, but a new extension is being drafted. The length of the new extension is still being determined and will be announced in the next couple of days. The legislature is working on a new law to change the structure of the emergency powers for the Governor, which will allow them to take action if they disagree with a declaration of emergency. Governor Hutchinson looks forward to working with the legislature on the new law and the new extension for the state of emergency.

 

  • Asked why the state doesn’t have a centralized system for signing up for a vaccination appointment, Governor Hutchinson said that they have looked at that, but that by having a centralized system, it would add an additional step to slow down the ability to vaccinate everyone as quickly as possible. Some local pharmacies have banded together to ensure that localities are not duplicating services. There is a statewide system to ensure that everyone has the information needed about getting vaccinated and the vaccine availability on the Department of Health website. Local organizations and volunteers know what is going on in their communities and the state should trust their knowledge and skills.

 

  • Asked about a lack of vaccine doses at Walgreens pharmacies across northwest Arkansas and not receiving new doses for weeks, Governor Hutchinson said that they were part of a federal program to get doses for people in long-term care facilities and were not part of the distribution for the state’s doses. Those Walgreens and CVS pharmacies are not getting new doses through the long-term care facility program as that has essentially shut down. The state is not using the pharmacies to help distribute new doses, but the state is using the leftover doses to vaccinate more patients. If those pharmacies do not have vaccine doses left now, it is because they have gone through their current supply and when the state has enough doses to expand their network, they may be brought back in to help distribute more doses.

 

  • There will be a mass vaccination clinic in northwest Arkansas this weekend, focusing on those 70 and older. While most of those appointments have been filled, there will be other vaccination clinics across the state in the coming weeks. Watch for news of those and check the Department of Health’s website to identify local pharmacies that new doses and appointments. Once you get on a list for a local pharmacy, they will call you, even if it takes some time. Due to the enormous demand for vaccines and the limited supply, you cannot expect to call one day and be vaccinated the next. Please be patient.

 

  • Asked about a timeline or benchmarks for lifting the restrictions on capacity on businesses, Governor Hutchinson said that they are looking at the data daily, and that they want to lift the restrictions, but they do not want to do so too early. They are looking at historical data as well as looking for the additional strains that could have a significant impact on increasing doses before making any decision about lifting the restrictions. There may be some movement on the 2/3 capacity of restaurants, but there still needs to be spacing until more of Arkansas is vaccinated.

 

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

 

  • Deaths among those at long-term care facilities have decreased, and for those residents who didn’t take advantage of the vaccine clinics, they are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated through their local pharmacy.

 

  • Please continue to follow the 3 W’s, as it is the best way to stop the spread of COVID. We are winning, but we need to continue to slow the spread so that we can completely eliminate COVID from our communities.

 

  • Asked why the state started to vaccinate those 65 to 69 who were in Phase 1C rather than other groups in Phase 1B who are not yet eligible to be vaccinated, Dr. Romero said a significant number of those 65 to 69 have comorbidities and should be vaccinated sooner rather than later. With the amount of vaccine that Arkansas had available at the time, the state felt that it would be appropriate to include only those 70 and over in the eligible population, but as the availability of the vaccine has increased, Arkansas will join most other states that have already opened the vaccine to those 65 and older.

 

  • The state has now fully vaccinated 14% of all those 70 and over, but that doesn’t reflect those that have only received one dose. They hope to have some data available next week on race and ethnicity for those vaccinated and those still missing. Some areas of the state are done with that group, and others are still working on vaccinating them.

 

Curtis Barnett: President and CEO, Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

 

  • Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, along with other partners across the state, have launched Vaccinated the Natural State initiative to encourage all Arkansans to get their COVID vaccinations as soon as they become eligible for them. There are two main thrusts of the initiative: business-to-business engagement and community engagement.

 

  • With the increase in vaccine availability over the coming months, more effort has to be made to ensure that more people are willing to get vaccinated when they can. Many people have hesitancy over getting vaccinated, and the initiative will endeavor to decrease that hesitancy. Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield has partnered with the Arkansas State Chamber, the Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care, the Northwest Arkansas Council, and Wal-Mart on the business-to-business engagement. Objective information, educational resources, video modules, communication toolkits, and outreach support will be provided to businesses to help guide them through the rollout of the COVID vaccines. Surveys show that employees are looking to their employers to find out information on the vaccines. By providing that information to the employers, hesitancy about the vaccines can be overcome. They will also work to get businesses to pledge to help stop the pandemic.

 

  • With regards to community engagement, they are partnering with the Arkansas Department of Health, the Arkansas Minority Health Commission, the Northwest Arkansas Council, UAMS, Wal-Mart, community pharmacies, hospitals, and community health centers. The plan is to reach Arkansans through targeted information about the vaccine, encourage them to get the vaccine, and give information about how to get the vaccine. Although it will cover all Arkansans, the plan will focus on those facing health disparities across the state. The information must come from trusted sources and the vaccine must be given at places where they feel safe. With this effort, they hope that they can get a vast majority of Arkansans vaccinated so that Arkansans can all return to normal.

 

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

 

  • After the winter storm last week and cold temperatures, many schools suffered extensive damage to roofs, water systems, and HVAC systems. As a result, many students are still going to virtual school due to that damage and not COVID. The Department of Education is working to help school districts recover as quickly as possible from the damage.

 

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

 

  • The state believes that they have started the vaccination of around 50% of all residents 70 and over. It takes around a month to get those residents their second doses, so they are working through those who have only had one dose so far.

2/22/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 195 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 249,847 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 50 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 65,912 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 3,378 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 242,135 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,521 active probable cases and there have been 63,335 probable recoveries. The total of 4,899 active cases is down 1,579 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,311 confirmed and 1,052 probable, a combined increase of 6 since yesterday. There are 588 hospitalized patients with 109 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,979 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 141,673. Additionally, there were 482 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 63,203.

 

Arkansas has received 691,525 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 487,212 inoculations have been given (70.5% of available doses). This represents an increase of 3,988 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 32,028, an increase of 69 since yesterday, for 52.5% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/19/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 180 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 249,176 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 88 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 65,537 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 4,518 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 240,348 confirmed recoveries. There are 1,960 active probable cases and there have been 62,524 probable recoveries. The total of 6,478 active cases is down 845 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,287 confirmed and 1,049 probable—increased by 13 since yesterday. There are 630 hospitalized patients with 108 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,334 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 133,630. Additionally, there were 1,399 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 57,878.

 

Arkansas has received 691,525 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 469,440 inoculations have been given (67.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 3,224 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 28,718, an increase of 1,158 since yesterday, for 47.1% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 34th in new cases and 19th in new deaths over the last 7 days, 8th in current hospitalizations, and 37th in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/18/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 141 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 248,996 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 112 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 65,449 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 5,111 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 239,586 confirmed recoveries. There are 2,212 active probable cases and there have been 62,186 probable recoveries. The total of 7,323 active cases is down 916 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,276 confirmed and 1,047 probable—increased by 10 since yesterday. There are 625 hospitalized patients with 107 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 2,155 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 131,996. Additionally, there were 820 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 55,517.

 

Arkansas has received 691,525 doses of vaccine, an increase of 15,000 from yesterday. A total of 466,216 inoculations have been given (67.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 4,075 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 27,560, an increase of 62 since yesterday, for 45.2% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/16/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 94 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 248,445 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 83 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 65,080 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 6,423 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 237,766 confirmed recoveries. There are 2,681 active probable cases and there have been 61,341 probable recoveries. The total of 9,104 active cases is down 1,390 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,233 confirmed and 1,054 probable—increased by 12 since yesterday. There are 638 hospitalized patients with 110 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 1,490 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 125,984. Additionally, there were 742 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 48,868.

 

Arkansas has received 658,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 458,431 inoculations have been given (69.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 3,342 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 23,080, an increase of 121 since yesterday, for 37.8% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/15/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 271 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 248,351 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 49 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 64,997 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 7,450 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 236,656 confirmed recoveries. There are 3,044 active probable cases and there have been 60,896 probable recoveries. The total of 10,494 active cases is down 2,079 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,222 confirmed and 1,053 probable, a combined increase of 10 since yesterday. There are 642 hospitalized patients with 111 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 3,896 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 124,196. Additionally, there were 543 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 45,850.

 

Arkansas has received 658,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 455,089 inoculations have been given (69.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 3,175 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and have given 22,959, an increase of 270 since yesterday, for 37.6% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the 7-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

2/12/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 439 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 11, for a total of 247,028 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 126 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 64,580 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 8,704 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 234,122 confirmed recoveries. There are 3,869 active probable cases and there have been 59,674 probable recoveries. The total of 12,573 active cases is down 945 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,179 confirmed and 1,033 probable—increased by 13 since yesterday. There are 712 hospitalized patients with 123 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,338 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 106,133. Additionally, there were 1,152 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 40,028.

 

Arkansas has received 657,200 doses of vaccine, an increase of 36,125 from yesterday. A total of 430,228 inoculations have been given (65.5% of available doses). This represents an increase of 9,658 since yesterday. The combined federal programs have received 61,000 doses of vaccine, an increase of 11,600 from yesterday, and have given 21,980, an increase of 416 since yesterday, for 36.0% of available doses. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 17 in new cases and 24 in new deaths over the last seven days, 10th in current hospitalizations, and 27 in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

2/11/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 724 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 10, for a total of 246,589 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 379 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 64,454 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 9,343 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 233,057 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,175 active probable cases and there have been 59,241 probable recoveries. The total of 13,518 active cases is down 672 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,165 confirmed and 1,034 probable—increased by 25 since yesterday. There are 712 hospitalized patients with 117 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 11,617 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 98,181. Additionally, there were 1,470 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 37,267.

 

Arkansas has received 621,075 doses of vaccine, an increase of 19,000 from yesterday. A total of 420,570 inoculations have been given (67.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,875 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 21,564, an increase of 386 since yesterday, for 43.7% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

2/10/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 632 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 9, for a total of 245,865 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 460 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 64,075 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 9,869 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 231,828 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,321 probable active cases and there have been 58,720 probable recoveries. The total of 14,190 active cases is down 708 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,144 confirmed and 1,030 probable, a combined increase of 26 since yesterday. There are 735 hospitalized patients with 138 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,790 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in February to 85,842. Additionally, there were 2,207 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 33,970 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 602,075 doses of vaccine, an increase of 200 from yesterday. A total of 404,695 inoculations have been given (67.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,483 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 21,178, an increase of 274 since yesterday, for 42.9% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

2/9/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 820 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 8, for a total of 245,233 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 655 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 63,615 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 10,525 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 230,565 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,373 active probable cases and there have been 58,209 probable recoveries. The total of 14,898 active cases is down 422 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,119 confirmed and 1,029 probable—increased by 42 since yesterday. There are 775 hospitalized patients with 137 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,651 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 77,575. Additionally, there were 3,672 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 29,906.

 

Arkansas has received 601,875 doses of vaccine, an increase of 40,725 from yesterday. A total of 392,212 inoculations have been given (65.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,588 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 20,904, an increase of 967 since yesterday, for 42.3% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • Looking at Phase 1-A, all long-term care facilities have had at least one vaccination clinic, first responders have been covered, and over 50% of teachers and staff have had access to vaccinations. More progress with vaccinating the 70+ population needs to be made before Arkansas will offer vaccinations to other groups in Phase 1-B. No exact dates are set for when more groups will be added to the vaccination list, but Governor Hutchinson said that more should be added by March 1. As of today, 12.8% of the Arkansas population has been vaccinated.
  • This week, the National Retail Pharmacy program will increase the amount of vaccine doses available by 20%. This will include 11,600 doses distributed to 58 Wal-Mart stores across Arkansas. This is over and above the state vaccination availability. The number of doses should stay consistent, not decrease, but they may increase.
  • Nationwide, the federal government announced that they will distribute one million doses to federally qualified community health centers. In Arkansas, this includes 12 community health organizations with 120 clinics across the state. This is a new federal program to ensure the availability of the vaccine to rural and underserved areas, and is over and above the state vaccination availability. There is not yet information about the amount of doses available or timing of when they will be available, but this new program will help distribute more vaccines.
  • The CDC will provide guidance to repurpose second doses for those who do not show up for their second appointment. The number of second-dose no-shows is expected to be a very small segment of the population. Those unused doses will be given to other people to ensure there is very little waste. It is expected that the CDC guidance will be that if the patient does not show up for 10 days after their scheduled second dose, that dose can then be used for others.
  • A new ad to encourage following the three W’s as well as getting your flu shot immediately, and the COVID vaccine when it is available, will start to be shown on TV. This is a $500,000 campaign over the next two months, and other ads will also be used. This is to encourage everyone to stay safe and get your vaccine when it is your turn.
  • Vaccine distribution to the states is not based on the effectiveness of administration of the doses, but only on a per capita basis. Governor Hutchinson has advocated to the federal government to allocate more doses to the states, rather than create new programs to distribute to community health clinics or national pharmacies, as Arkansas has shown that they are very efficient with distribution.
  • Asked about a Texarkana fast food restaurant that was not requiring masks or social distancing among workers or diners, Governor Hutchinson said that the directive to require masks and social distancing is still in place, and the Department of Health is responsible for enforcement. If any places are not following the directive, then bring them to the attention of the Department of Health, and they will ensure that the guidelines are being followed and levy fines if needed.
  • Asked about the delays in the long-term care facility vaccination program, Governor Hutchinson said that the state has vaccinated around 60% of long-term care facilities through their program at independent pharmacies. The federal program was slow on starting vaccinations and were over-allocated doses, but the state has received some of the excess doses to help vaccinate those over 70. There have been three waves of clinics, and during the second phase, there was a 30% increase in people being willing to be vaccinated.
  • Asked about the strain on pharmacies to administer thousands of vaccines, Governor Hutchinson thanked them for their hard work, and the state will work with them to ensure they have what is needed.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • With the combined PCR and antigen testing numbers, for the first time since November, Arkansas’s seven-day average is back under 10% positive testing. Active cases are also dropping. Vaccinations are more available in all regions of the state. Arkansas is improving, but we need to keep working to continue to slow the spread.
  • Asked about a report that suggests that the state is in the eye of a hurricane with regards to the recent decrease in cases, Dr. Romero said that he has not seen the report, but that he thinks the state is effectively decreasing the number of new cases and there should not be another spike. None of the new strains have been found in Arkansas yet, but it is only a matter of time. With the current effectiveness of mitigation practices, Arkansas can ensure that there will not be a new spike in cases.

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

  • Over the past three weeks, through the various programs, Arkansas’s supply of vaccine has increased by around 40%. It is expected that vaccine availability will increase, although only a smaller increase next week. The main goal is to find out if any new vaccines will become available and prepare for the distribution of those doses. No news is available on approval of the new vaccines.
  • Asked whether the state has plans to ensure that all clinics have vaccines available for their patients who are eligible, Colonel Ator said that there just is not enough available now to distribute to everyone who wants it. Once more vaccine is available and the state moves into Phase 1-C, they will work with clinics and doctors to ensure that the doses get to those who need it.

 

 

2/8/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 539 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 7, for a total of 244,413 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 98 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 62,960 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,016 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 229,290 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,304 active probable cases and there have been 57,627 probable recoveries. The total of 15,320 active cases is down 1,624 from last Friday. Total deaths—4,081 confirmed and 1,025 probable, a combined increase of 30 since yesterday. There are 777 hospitalized patients with 142 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,139 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 71,514. Additionally, there were 573 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 23,576.

 

Arkansas has received 561,150 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 379,624 inoculations have been given (67.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 1,946 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 19,937, an increase of 496 since yesterday, for 40.4% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

2/5/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,292 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 4, for a total of 242,251 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 532 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 62,472 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,778 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 226,415 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,166 active probable cases and there have been 56,284 probable recoveries. The total of 16,944 active cases is down 48 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,032 confirmed and 1,018 probable—increased by 41 since yesterday. There are 808 hospitalized patients with 144 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 11,496 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 42,700. Additionally, there were 3,294 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 17,025.

 

Arkansas has received 555,850 doses of vaccine, an increase of 19,025 from yesterday. A total of 351,485 inoculations have been given (63.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 21,964 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 18,777, an increase of 492 since yesterday, for 38.0% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks three in new cases and 15 in new deaths over the last seven days, 14 in current hospitalizations, and 28 in total population vaccinated.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

2/4/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,894 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 3, for a total of 240,959 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 575 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 61,940 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,806 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 225,114 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,186 active probable cases and there have been 55,754 probable recoveries. The total of 16,992 active cases is up 459 from yesterday. Total deaths—4,013 confirmed and 996 probable—increased by 24 since yesterday. There are 815 hospitalized patients with 145 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 12,782 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in February to 29,994. Additionally, there were 2,068 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 11,848.

 

Arkansas has received 536,825 doses of vaccine, an increase of 17,600 from yesterday. A total of 329,521 inoculations have been given (61.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,037 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 18,285, an increase of 746 since yesterday, for 37.0% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

2/3/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,732 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 2, for a total of 239,065 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 694 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 61,365 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,401 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 223,644 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,132 probable active cases and there have been 55,238 probable recoveries. The total of 16,553 active cases is up 202 from 16,331 yesterday. Total deaths—3,994 confirmed and 991 probable, a combined increase of 46 since yesterday. There are 884 hospitalized patients with 142 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 10,060 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in February to 15,248. Additionally, there were 1,813 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 6,975 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 519,225 doses of vaccine, an increase of 32,725 from yesterday. A total of 316,484 inoculations have been given (61.0% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,193 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 17,539, an increase of 422 since yesterday, for 35.5% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

2/2/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 793 confirmed cases since yesterday, February 1, for a total of 237,333 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 717 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 60,671 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,371 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 221,965 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,960 active probable cases and there have been 54,739 probable recoveries. The total of 16,331 active cases is down 334 from 16,665 yesterday. Total deaths—3,971 confirmed and 968 probable, a combined increase of 44 since yesterday. There are 869 hospitalized patients with 141 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 4,638 PCR tests were performed. Additionally, there were 2,585 antigen tests performed yesterday.

 

Arkansas has received 486,500 doses of vaccine, an increase of 15,900 from yesterday. A total of 301,291 inoculations have been given (61.9% of available doses). This represents an increase of 7,721 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 17,117, an increase of 174 since yesterday, for 34.6% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • The Arkansas monthly fiscal report was released, and it shows that for this fiscal year, income and sales tax is over $400 million more than forecast. With the expected surplus, Governor Hutchinson encourages Congress and the White House to compromise on the new COVID relief package. With the expected economic growth of 3.5%, there is no need to go big with the relief package, as that will cause the country to go even more into debt.
  • The 11pm curfew on bars and restaurants set to expire on February 3 will not be extended as hospitalizations and cases have decreased.
  • Any delays in vaccinations are a result of ensuring there are second doses available, as well as ensuring that doses are getting to the people who need it.
  • After speaking with the CDC and the federal COVID task force, Arkansas will receive an additional 5% increase in vaccine doses this week, in addition to the 16% increase announced last week. These additional doses are due to improvements in both distribution on the federal level as well as manufacturing the vaccines. The federal government has been ensuring that states receive data on their vaccination doses at least three weeks out, so that plans can be made for distribution. Beyond those doses, Wal-Mart will receive 10,000 doses starting on February 11 to be distributed to 60 stores across the state. These doses will be available to all those currently eligible for the vaccinations and will be coordinated with Colonel Ator to ensure the doses go where they are most needed.
  • Asked when the state will move forward with additional categories of Phase 1-B, Governor Hutchinson said that the state started Phase 1-B earlier than expected, but that they will need to continue to increase the immunizations before they will start to add more parts of Phase 1-B. Once supply increases or demand decreases, more groups will be added.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • Although cases and hospitalizations have decreased, please continue to follow the 3 W’s. Monoclonal antibody treatments and the beginnings of the vaccination efficacy have also helped.
  • Once the new strains are confirmed to arrive in Arkansas, they will become the main strains that spread, and are more contagious, so care is needed to ensure that the spread is low. Specimens are being sent to the CDC, as well as some labs within Arkansas, to be sequenced to see if the new strains are in the state. The variant first found in Brazil has shown some resistance to the monoclonal antibody treatment, but it is not complete resistance.
  • Vaccines are safe, effective, and should be taken as soon as you are eligible and offered the doses. All of the vaccines are effective at significantly decreasing the severity and mortality of COVID.
  • The Johnson and Johnson vaccine could be approved this month, which is the single dose vaccine. This would be the third vaccine approved and would significantly increase the availability of doses to help increase immunity across the state.
  • Doses are being held for second doses and will not be administered to give more people first doses. This is based on the CDC and ACIP recommendations, and the state will not go against their recommendations.

Mike Preston: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Commerce

  • The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance website reopened on Friday, January 29, with the new requirements from the new relief bill passed in December. There were 40 changes, including requiring ID verification at the beginning to help catch fraud before distributing money. The first weekend, 4,900 payments were distributed, and 9,800 payments were processed yesterday. More payments will be distributed over the coming week. Over 60,000 emails were sent to all those eligible for the additional PUA payments, and those participants should click on the unique link in the email to upload their identification and additional documentation to ensure they get the payments. The system has flagged some payments for review, but the state is working to adjust to the new requirements and it should be solved within a couple of days.
  • The 60,000 eligible and approved for PUA are mostly independent contractors, gig workers, self-employed, or their business was impacted by the pandemic. There has been a shift from people eligible for regular unemployment assistance to PUA. With the new relief bill, there are additional weeks of traditional unemployment assistance to exhaust before you can apply for PUA. All this information is available on the website or by phone at 844-908-2178.
  • With the original relief bills, large amounts of fraudulent claims were made, and thus many people received 1099G tax forms for unemployment claims that they did not make. If you have received the 1099G claim for a fraudulent unemployment claim, file a police report, and email that report to adws.internalaudit@arkansas.gov by February 12. The only way that this fraud can be removed from your account is by receiving the police report from your local law enforcement agency. The state will report the corrected information to the IRS by the end of February. More information is available on the IRS website.

Dr. Ivy Pfeffer: Deputy Commissioner, Arkansas Department of Education

  • Last week, many schools celebrated 100 days of school this year, and students have been able to learn with relatively few interruptions.
  • This school year, 74% of schools and 56% of districts have not had to have large scale modifications due to COVID.
  • To learn how students and schools have been affected by COVID and distance learning, the federal government has not given a waiver for the year end testing that normally takes place in the spring. Testing is important for learning about COVID’s effects, not on academic accountability. The Arkansas Department of Education supports legislation to waive the A-F rating for schools based on the standardized testing for this school year. This is to help the state learn how to improve and support students and schools who need it.
  • Students will have to take the standardized tests at either the school itself, or a school-approved location. The Department of Education is allowing for additional flexibility on dates, times, and how they are administered. Any students who are distance learning will have the opportunity to work with their school districts to ensure that they feel safe when they take the test. 80% of students across the state are going to school on-site, and so it is much easier for the districts to handle the much smaller number who are remote learning.

 

 

2/1/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 872 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 31, for a total of 236,540 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 354 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 59,954 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 11,806 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 220,771 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,859 active probable cases and there have been 54,133 probable recoveries. The total of 16,665 active cases is down 661 from 17,326 last Friday. Total deaths—3,937 confirmed and 958 probable, a combined increase of 27 since yesterday. There are 889 hospitalized patients with 146 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,803 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 340,985. Additionally, there were 398 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 81,932.

 

Arkansas has received 470,600 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 293,570 inoculations have been given (62.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 2,684 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 16,943, an increase of 271 since yesterday, for 34.3% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

1/29/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,218 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 28, for a total of 233,556 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 489 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 59,007 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 12,010 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 217,633 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,316 active probable cases and there have been 52,743 probable recoveries. The total of 17,326 active cases is down 221 from 17,547 yesterday. Total deaths—3,887 confirmed and 944 probable, a combined increase of 47 since yesterday. There are 951 hospitalized patients with 144 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 13,027 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 307,097. Additionally, there were 3,565 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 79,095.

 

Arkansas has received 470,400 doses of vaccine, an increase of 200 from yesterday. A total of 270,332 inoculations have been given (57.5% of available doses). This represents an increase of 15,058 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 14,596, an increase of 2,188 since yesterday, for 29.5% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 15 in new cases and eight in new deaths over the last seven days, and 10 in current hospitalizations.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/28/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,471 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 27, for a total of 232,338 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 421 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 58,518 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 12,171 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 216,277 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,376 active probable cases and there have been 52,218 probable recoveries. The total of 17,547 active cases is down from 17,686 yesterday. Total deaths—3,864 confirmed and 920 probable, a combined increase of 42 since yesterday. There are 996 hospitalized patients with 143 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 10,326 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 292,618. Additionally, there were 3,195 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 75,530.

 

Arkansas has received 470,200 doses of vaccine, an increase of 47,325 from yesterday. A total of 255,274 inoculations have been given (54.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,808 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 12,408, an increase of 2,778 since yesterday, for 25.1% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/27/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,140 confirmed cases since yesterday for a total of 230,867 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 637 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 58,097 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 12,292 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 214,710 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,394 probable active cases and there have been 51,796 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,839 confirmed and 903 probable. There are 1,029 hospitalized patients with 157 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 9,223 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in January to 280,505. Additionally, there were 3,031 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 72,335 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 422,875 doses of vaccine, an increase of 12,700 from yesterday. A total of 241,466 inoculations have been given (57.1% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,392 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 9,630, an increase of 2,584 since yesterday, for 19.5% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

1/26/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 1,317 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 25, for a total of 229,727 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,168 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 57,460 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 12,755 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 213,135 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,403 active probable cases and there have been 51,173 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,810 confirmed and 880 probable. There are 1,095 hospitalized patients with 176 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,530 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 270,202. Additionally, there were 4,959 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 69,254.

 

Arkansas has received 410,175 doses of vaccine, an increase of 72,825 from yesterday. A total of 227,074 inoculations have been given (55.4% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,457 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 7,046, an increase of 61 since yesterday, for 14.3% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • The unemployment rate in Arkansas has decreased to 4.2%, which is lower than the 5.0% it was in March of 2020. This is a result of an increase in jobs, not a decrease in people looking for jobs.
  • According to the New York Times, Arkansas is ranked 10th in percent of the population vaccinated at 6.5%. Last week, 92% of first dose vaccines coming into Arkansas were administered within 48 hours. Arkansas has received over 72,000 doses this week, but only 37,125 are first doses. Governor Hutchinson spoke with Jeff Zients, the head of President Biden’s COVID Vaccination Task Force, and after the press conference, Governor Hutchinson also has a call with the National Governor’s Association, along with the federal COVID Vaccination Task Force, to find out the number of doses in future weeks’ distribution of vaccine. Colonel Ator is working to set up long range planning for vaccinations, but that depends upon on knowing how many doses are available. Doses are being distributed so that all areas of the state are covered equitably, and it is not just going to the urban areas of the state. Arkansans are urged to be patient as the vaccination plans are being finalized.
  • Although only 7,046 doses have been distributed by the federal Long Term Care Facility program, they will have fulfilled their requirements this week. The state has been given approval to start using those extra doses for those over 70 at CVS and Walgreens. Since yesterday, around 2,500 have been vaccinated at Walgreens. Those doses are not counted yet due to an allowed two to three day delay in reporting. The Winter COVID Task Force had a meeting today, and they report that over 90% of long term care facilities have had at least one vaccination clinic. The other facilities should be covered soon. They do not have any information about the actual percent of staff and patients vaccinated. Currently, Arkansas has no ability to measure the acceptance rate across the state by first responders, hospital and nursing home staff, or educators.
  • Asked about the delay in setting up the additional assistance for unemployment insurance from the most recent federal aid bill, Governor Hutchinson said that the delay is a result of having to readjust the systems to reflect the new amounts available. It is a work in progress, but Arkansas is working hard to get it done as quickly as possible. To those who were told in December that they won’t be receiving any additional money until February, Governor Hutchinson said that they should reach out to their community action agency to receive help with rental and food assistance as needed. Additional information was sent to participants in the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program last Friday, in order to make sure that they have everything they need. If the participant put in an application before December 26, they should continue to file their weekly forms, but money will not be distributed until the system updates. New claimants will be delayed until the system updates.
  • Asked about a Politico report that there will be a 17% increase in vaccine doses distributed to the state next week, Governor Hutchinson said that if that is true, that will be welcome news, but any statement on that will have to wait until numbers are confirmed. Any increase in vaccine doses will be distributed the same way that current doses are being distributed.
  • Asked if there were any concerns about delays in a second dose, Governor Hutchinson said that there should be no delays or concerns about not being able to receive a second dose. As shipments of the vaccine arrive in Arkansas, second doses are set aside to ensure that there are no delays in distributing them.
  • Asked about the dismissal of the lawsuit by bar and restaurant owners against the 11 p.m. curfew, Governor Hutchinson agreed with the dismissal and said that the decrease in cases over the past weeks have shown that the curfew is necessary. A decision will be made within the next week as to whether the curfew will need to be extended.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are safe and effective. They are around 95% effective, and of those 5-6% who did contract COVID during the studies were mild cases. They are 100% effective in preventing severe cases. The studies were conducted with complete safety protocols, even as they were developed quickly. The fast development of the vaccines was achieved through other means, not by skipping any of the safety procedures.
  • Even after being fully vaccinated, Arkansans are still encouraged to wear a mask, social distance around anyone not in their household, and wash their hands. Current cases counts are dropping, but there are additional strains of COVID that were first found in Brazil, South Africa, and the United Kingdom, and they could pose an increased threat. Although none have been confirmed yet, it is possible that one or more of those strains could be active in Arkansas already, and these strains are more dangerous than the current strain. Please follow the three W’s to help stop and slow the spread of COVID in any of the strains.
  • Asked if using two masks rather than one is better, Dr. Dillaha said that she has not seen any studies to suggest that. However, some masks are better than others. Single layer cotton masks aren’t as good as multi-layer masks. Masks with valves shouldn’t be used due to the valve focusing the spread of aerosols directly to a person you might be talking to. Masks must be worn properly by covering your mouth and nose and having a snug fit. If you are wearing it under your chin or nose, the mask is not going to be effective.

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

  • Around 3,000 doses from the Long Term Care Facility program will be made available to appointments starting next Monday at CVS locations around the state. There may be fewer pharmacies getting doses due to a lack of those vaccines, but the Arkansas Department of Health will have those locations updated this week. Those are Moderna doses which have a 28 day lag, rather than just a 21 day lag for Pfizer, so the lower percentage of administered doses in this program will start to increase soon as second doses are administered.

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • Winter sports are happening now, and, with the decrease in current spread, Arkansans are urged not to get complacent and continue to follow health guidelines. If these precautions are followed, these sports can continue, and the spring sport season will not be disrupted like last year.

 

 

1/25/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 582 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 24, for a total of 228,410 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 54 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 56,292 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 12,921 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 211,684 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,871 active probable cases and there have been 50,545 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,778 confirmed and 872 probable. There are 1,084 hospitalized patients with 187 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,486 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 262,176. Additionally, there were 357 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 64,221.

 

Arkansas has received 337,350 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 214,617 inoculations have been given (63.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 2,649 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,985, an increase of two since yesterday, for 14.1% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

1/22/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,494 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 21, for a total of 225,737 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 668 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 55,645 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 14,150 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 207,838 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,957 active probable cases and there have been 48,858 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,723 confirmed and 826 probable. There are 1,142 hospitalized patients with 193 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 10,531 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 230,400. Additionally, there were 6,059 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 60,302.

 

Arkansas has received 332,250 doses of vaccine, an increase of 1,500 from yesterday. A total of 193,831 inoculations have been given (58.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,704 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,982, an increase of four since yesterday, for 14.1% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks 12 in new cases and fifth in new deaths over the last seven days, and 12 in current hospitalizations.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/21/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,956 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 20, for a total of 224,243 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,150 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 54,977 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 14,578 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 205,950 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,040 active probable cases and there have been 48,126 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,689 confirmed and 807 probable. There are 1,160 hospitalized patients with 195 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 10,413 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 218,903. Additionally, there were 2,825 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 54,243.

 

Arkansas has received 330,750 doses of vaccine, an increase of 18,525 from yesterday. A total of 179,127 inoculations have been given (54.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 14,428 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,978, an increase of 162 since yesterday, for 14.1% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/20/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,490 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 19, for a total of 222,287 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,030 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 53,827 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 14,613 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 203,991 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,778 probable active cases and there have been 47,261 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,657 confirmed and 784 probable. There are 1,179 hospitalized patients with 212 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 9,184 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in January to 206,584. Additionally, there were 4,186 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 51,418 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 312,225 doses of vaccine, an increase of 1,950 from yesterday. A total of 164,699 inoculations have been given (52.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 17,090 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,816, an increase of 190 since yesterday, for 13.8% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

1/19/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 841 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 18, for a total of 220,797 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 490 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 52,797 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,281 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 201,869 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,659 active probable cases and there have been 46,369 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,621 confirmed and 765 probable. There are 1,265 hospitalized patients with 209 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,074 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 193,601. Additionally, there were 2,281 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 47,178.

 

Arkansas has received 310,275 doses of vaccine, an increase of 35,275 from yesterday. A total of 147,609 inoculations have been given (47.6% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,647 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,626, an increase of 29 since yesterday, for 13.4% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • Although the new positive cases have been lower the past week compared to the previous week, COVID is still here and still a threat until more people can be vaccinated. The low number of new vaccinations in long-term care facilities was due to logistical issues this weekend. Facilities are still on schedule to finish by the end of the month. The Arkansas Department of Health website has been updated to include a page on the vaccine. It includes a map of pharmacies that are involved in distributing the vaccines.
  • The Super Bowl in February is usually a time of parties, but in the time of COVID, you are encouraged to have a very limited watch party.
  • The reason for why CVS and Walgreens are still getting so many doses when they have administered so few is that it is a federal contract. The doses were allocated based on a census of patients at long-term care facilities, but due to a decline in population, the state is looking to reallocate those extra doses.
  • Asked about reports that some schools in Northwest Arkansas do not have enough vaccine doses to vaccinate their staff, Governor Hutchinson said the limited supply has lead to delays in requests for doses being fulfilled. No one expected all the teachers to be vaccinated in the first week of access, and it is only the second day that teachers have been allowed to be vaccinated.
  • The plan is still to vaccinate everyone in long-term care facilities by the end of January, even if it appears that the doses have been slow to be administered. The addition of groups from Phase 1-B to the groups who are eligible to be vaccinated shows that the Department of Health is comfortable with the pace of vaccinations. It could be faster, and that is why Colonel Ator is working to unify the vaccine distribution plans across the state.
  • Asked whether the new planned hospital beds are in use, Governor Hutchinson said the COVID Winter Task Force advised that some of the beds could be used, ahead of schedule. With the decrease in hospitalizations, the additional beds have not yet been needed.
  • Asked about Arkansas Capitol security plans for the inauguration, Governor Hutchinson said that the planned events this past weekend did not take place and that there were increased security plans for the coming days. There should be enough security to ensure no damage is done to any state property or injury to any staff. Governor Hutchinson is heading to Washington, DC to attend the inauguration of President-Elect Biden tomorrow.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • The new strains of COVID are normal in a pandemic as the virus mutates. The current biggest threat is a strain first found in the United Kingdom, and 10 states have reported finding this strain. Arkansas is currently monitoring new cases for this strain, but all suspicious cases so far have been found by the CDC to be the main strain of COVID. There are eight samples still being tested. The CDC says that by March, the new strain will be the predominant strain in the United States, and so it will get to Arkansas, even if it isn’t here now. The new strain is 50 to 70 times more transmissible than the current strain. The three W’s (wear a mask, wash your hands, watch your distance) can still help prevent the spread of this new strain. The concern is that the new strain may lead to another spike in cases due to the transmissibility, as well as threatening the vaccination plans. The ACIP has discussed this new strain with the vaccine manufacturers, and it appears that the vaccines still work against this new strain. There are additional new strains, one first found in Brazil and one in South Africa, that haven’t been found in the United States yet. The strain first found in Brazil is not as susceptible to the monoclonal antibody treatment.
  • Asked whether the increased transmissibility of the new strain would lead to a need for increased restrictions on schools, restaurants, and other public events, Dr. Romero said that additional restrictions would only be needed if people do not follow the three W’s. If people wear their masks appropriately, there will be no need for stricter restrictions than are currently in place.

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

  • Arkansas is working to reclaim the extra doses from CVS and Walgreens when they complete their vaccinations scheduled for the end of January. The hope is that, by the end of next week, those in Phase 1-B will be allowed access to the excess doses.

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • Arkansas has a new program to assist schools, communities, and students find the help they need during COVID. The website will eventually have specific supports in every county, including food security, clothing closets, physical and mental health support, and other supports. As more organizations start to ramp up their efforts, they will be added to the website. There are over 50 categories of supports listed now. This will not be shut down when the COVID pandemic is gone, but will be used in the future to help students get the aid that they may need.
  • As of the end of December, Arkansas had spent all the money allocated in the CARES Act for emergency leave for teachers. There were $4.6 million in additional claims not covered by the available funding. The new federal funding passed in January will be able to be used to cover these claims. The Governor will be seeking approval by the General Assembly to cover those costs.

 

 

1/18/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 988 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 17, for a total of 219,956 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 121 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 52,307 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,747 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 199,598 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,047 active probable cases and there have been 45,498 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,585 confirmed and 758 probable. There are 1,263 hospitalized patients with 216 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,432 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 186,957. Additionally, there were 323 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 44,897.

 

Arkansas has received 275,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 133,962 inoculations have been given (48.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 2,940 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 6,597, an increase of 312 since yesterday, for 13.4% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-B of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

1/15/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,140 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 14, for a total of 216,339 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 984 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 51,296 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 17,933 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 194,855 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,680 active probable cases and there have been 42,874 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,525 confirmed and 738 probable. There are 1,314 hospitalized patients with 226 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 12,937 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 153,120. Additionally, there were 3,757 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 41,450.

 

Arkansas has received 275,000 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 119,065 inoculations have been given (43.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 6,827 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 5,091, an increase of 557 since yesterday, for 10.3% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks eight in new cases and eight in new deaths over the last seven days, and 12 in current hospitalizations.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/14/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,735 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 13, for a total of 214,199 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 756 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 50,312 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 17,357 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 193,321 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,383 active probable cases and there have been 42,192 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,495 confirmed and 733 probable. There are 1,295 hospitalized patients with 241 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 12,294 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 138,024. Additionally, there were 3,161 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 37,666.

 

Arkansas has received 275,000 doses of vaccine, an increase of 23,400 from yesterday. A total of 112,238 inoculations have been given (40.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 9,581 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 49,400 doses of vaccine, an increase of 24,700 from yesterday, and has given 4,534, an increase of 365 since yesterday, for 9.2% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/13/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,591 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 12, for a total of 212,464 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 876 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 49,556 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 17,555 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 191,412 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,540 probable active cases and there have been 41,297 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,470 confirmed and 716 probable. There are 1,362 hospitalized patients with 255 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,581 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in January to 123,260. Additionally, there were 4,778 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 34,463 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 251,600 doses of vaccine, an increase of 24,100 from yesterday. A total of 102,657 inoculations have been given (40.8% of available doses). This represents an increase of 13,208 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 4,169, an increase of 285 since yesterday, for 16.9% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

1/12/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 2,095 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 11, for a total of 210,873 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,114 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 48,680 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 18,177 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 189,245 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,525 active probable cases and there have been 40,455 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,424 confirmed and 697 probable. There are 1,354 hospitalized patients with 251 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 6,358 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 113,364. Additionally, there were 4,334 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 29,640.

 

Arkansas has received 227,500 doses of vaccine, an increase of 24,125 from yesterday. A total of 89,449 inoculations have been given (39.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 8,653 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 3,884, an increase of 110 since yesterday, for 15.7% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • Phase 1-A is expected to be finished by the end of January. Two parts of Phase 1-B, that is those 70 and older as well as educators and staff at daycares, K-12, and higher education facilities, will be moved up to be vaccinated starting on January 18. This is a result of additional doses being available, with around 50,000 doses coming in per week, and those numbers are expected to increase. The vaccines for those 70 and older will be available through hospitals, health care providers, and pharmacies. Vaccines for those in education and child care will be handled by school districts who will need to reach out to the ADH units or pharmacies to schedule a vaccination clinic onsite.
  • There is no estimated date for the rest of Phase 1-B, frontline essential workers, while Phase 1-C is still estimated to begin in April.
  • The Arkansas National Guard is working with the Department of Health and the Department of Emergency Management to finalize a plan for vaccinations, but should be ready by January 15. Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator, Director of Military Affairs for the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, will head the vaccine distribution plan. The Department of Health will still be running the vaccination plans, but Colonel Ator will be helping the state coordinate across all agencies as needed.
  • Asked if there will be enough doses ready for the people eligible for vaccinations on January 18, Governor Hutchinson said that they won’t have enough for everyone in the new group, but that there are healthcare facilities across the state that have doses ready to administer without having the patients eligible to receive them. Once President-Elect Biden is inaugurated, Governor Hutchinson expects even more doses to be released to the state and an increase in the future supply.
  • Inmates in correctional facilities are in Phase 1-C, and there are no plans to make any adjustments.
  • Asked whether the FBI has given specific threat information about protests at the Arkansas Capitol, Governor Hutchinson said that they have not received any specific threat, but that they are taking the threats seriously. There were sufficient security resources available for the opening of the legislative session, and they will also be available for any future events. The Arkansas Capitol will be protected on January 20, as the seat of democracy in Arkansas. The National Guard would only be activated if the civilian police forces are not able to deal with any threats. Governor Hutchinson says that it’s less likely to be violent in Arkansas than in other states.
  • Asked if he was concerned about the reception for the hate crimes bill mention in his state of the state address, Governor Hutchinson said that he was hopeful for the bill’s passage.
  • Asked how someone would get vaccinated with the expansion of eligibility, Governor Hutchinson said that they needed to reach out to the hospitals or other health care facilities in their area to see what is available and how to get on the list. There will not be a centralized waiting list.
  • Asked if the state will start opening up mass vaccination centers at large venues, Governor Hutchinson said that there is no point in opening those unless there are enough doses to require them. When large schools or employers are set to be vaccinated, there will be a need for mass vaccination capabilities.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • There is a third vaccine on the horizon, the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine, and the safety of it will be assessed at future FDA meetings. More vaccination doses are coming in the near future. The goal is to minimize adverse effects and maximize effectiveness.
  • The report that had Arkansas seven from the bottom on the list of states that had vaccinated the highest percentage of the population was based on old data. When the numbers are recalculated with the current information, Arkansas is 14 on the list. Yesterday, 2.7% of the population was vaccinated, and as of today, it is 3%.
  • Asked if Arkansas has set up a crisis standard of care to help set goals for rationing if needed, Dr. Romero said that they are developing one, but that they hope that they never have to use it.
  • The delay in vaccinations, as well as the low percentage of the population vaccinated, is concerning, but the state is working to speed up the process, both of the vaccination and the reporting. The number of doses is the limiting factor. If the federal government releases more doses, Arkansas will be able to distribute those doses where they are needed more easily. No one is going to only get one dose. The vaccination plan will be more complex as both second doses are needed as well as future vaccines being approved that may only require one dose.

Retired Colonel Rob “Gator” Ator: Director of Military Affairs, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

  • Every Arkansan should be proud of the work performed by the Arkansas Department of Health. As the number of vaccination-eligible population increases, more work needs to be done to ensure that capacity increases as well. That includes involving the Arkansas National Guard.
  • Additional pharmacies will be added to the vaccine distribution plan to help handle the increased need for vaccines.

Major General Kendall Penn: Adjutant General, Arkansas National Guard

  • The plan is to bring hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and private industry together to allow more locations for vaccine distribution and administration. There is a new data management program that will allow departments across state government to know the amount of vaccine distributed, administered, and available in real time. There will also be strike teams created to help schools or other large companies get vaccinated quickly, by sending people to those locations. The plan also includes making this information easily accessible to the public, as well as allowing Governor Hutchinson and Dr. Romero the information they need to make timely decisions.

 

 

1/11/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,029 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 10, for a total of 208,778 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 239 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 47,566 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 18,166 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 187,194 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,368 active probable cases and there have been 39,506 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,392 confirmed and 689 probable. There are 1,371 hospitalized patients with 268 on ventilators, both new records.

 

Yesterday, 7,302 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 104,721. Additionally, there were 1,464 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 25,230.

 

Arkansas has received 203,375 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday. A total of 80,796 inoculations have been given (39.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 2,942 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 3,774, an increase of 351 since yesterday, for 15.3% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

1/8/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,211 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 7, for a total of 202,742 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 733 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 46,118 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 18,564 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas, a new record, and there have been 180,851 confirmed recoveries. There are 8,726 active probable cases, a new record, and there have been 36,727 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,304 confirmed and 662 probable. There are 1,342 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 219 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 11,010 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 68,193. Additionally, there were 3,743 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 19,886.

 

Arkansas has received 190,100 doses of vaccine, an increase of 20,475 from yesterday. A total of 65,991 inoculations have been given (34.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 7,077 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 2,474, an increase of 100 since yesterday, for 10.0% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

According to Washington Post data, across all states and territories, on a per capita basis, Arkansas ranks nine in new cases and 12 in new deaths over the last seven days, and 13 in current hospitalizations.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/7/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,277 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 6, for a total of 200,531 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,046 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 45,385 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 17,517 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas, a new record, and there have been 179,718 confirmed recoveries. There are 8,467 active probable cases, a new record, and there have been 36,262 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,273 confirmed and 653 probable. There are 1,326 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 218 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 11,513 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 55,731. Additionally, there were 3,796 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 16,143.

 

Arkansas has received 169,625 doses of vaccine, an increase of 17,550 from yesterday. A total of 58,914 inoculations have been given (34.7% of available doses). This represents an increase of 8,235 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 2,374, an increase of 841 since yesterday, for 9.6% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

1/6/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,324 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 5, for a total of 198,254 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,381 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 44,339 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,954 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 178,025 confirmed recoveries. There are 8,138 probable active cases, a new record, and there have been 35,549 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,252 confirmed and 649 probable. There are 1,321 hospitalized patients with 217 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,741 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in January to 43,129. Additionally, there were 4,477 antigen tests performed yesterday, for a total of 12,285 tests this month.

 

Arkansas has received 152,075 doses of vaccine, an increase of 17,650 from yesterday. A total of 50,679 inoculations have been given (33.3% of available doses). This represents an increase of 12,795 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 1,533, an increase of 209 since yesterday, for 6.2% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new confirmed and probable daily cases of COVID-19. The green line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

1/5/2021

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 2,275 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 4, for a total of 195,930 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,832 probable cases since yesterday, a new record, for a total of 42,958 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,883 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 175,818 confirmed recoveries. There are 7,525 active probable cases, a new record, and there have been 34,799 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,205 confirmed and 631 probable. There are 1,323 hospitalized patients with 224 on ventilators, both new records.

 

Yesterday, 5,224 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 33,334. Additionally, there were 3,552 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 7,451.

 

Arkansas has received 134,425 doses of vaccine, an increase of 10,100 from yesterday. A total of 37,884 inoculations have been given (28.2% of available doses). This represents an increase of 2,922 since yesterday. The Long Term Care Federal Program has received 24,700 doses of vaccine, no increase from yesterday, and has given 1,324, no increase since yesterday, for 5.4% of doses given. Arkansas is in phase 1-A of vaccine distribution.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • The Power of You is the new message, emphasizing your own part in helping to stop COVID by the three W’s: wearing a mask, washing your hands, and watching your distance.
  • Arkansas is in Phase 1-A. This includes high priority health care workers, long-term care facility staff and residents, and other high priority groups. These other groups are workers at primary and urgent care facilities, college and university student health centers, K-12 health clinics and school nurses, dental clinics, EMS, fire and law enforcement who serve as first responders, pharmacists, home health care workers, private and personal care workers, hospice care workers, dialysis center workers, corrections officers, and blood donation center workers. These are the same as the CDC guidelines other than moving first responders into Phase 1-A, who were in the original CDC guidelines for Phase 1-A. The full list of those in Phase 1-A includes 180,000 Arkansans. The goal is to vaccinate all of these before the end of January. Hospitals and pharmacies have been setting up clinics to help distribute these doses.
  • Phase 1-B should start in February, and includes people who are 70 or older, as well as frontline essential workers, such as teachers and school staff, food and agricultural workers, firefighters and police not in 1-A, manufacturing workers, grocery store workers, public transit workers, childcare workers, U.S. Postal Service workers, and essential government workers, including state legislators. CDC guidelines recommended only 75 and older, but Arkansas has adjusted that to 70 and over. There are over 400,000 in this group, not counting all the essential workers. Hospitals and pharmacies will continue to distribute doses, but local health units will also be used. Private sector companies and the Arkansas National Guard will coordinate with the Department of Health team to help with the monumental task of vaccinating Arkansans from Phase 1-B to the rest of the general population.
  • Phase 1-C should start in April. This will include people who are 65 to 69, those between 16 and 64 with high-risk medical conditions, and essential workers not in 1-B, such as transportation and logistics, water and wastewater, food service, shelter and housing, public safety, finance, IT and communications, energy, media, and public health workers.
  • Adjustments may be made depending on data, doses, and interest in vaccines. The full plan for vaccinations will be on the Department of Health website by January 15 so that everyone can learn the plans.
  • When you get your first dose of the vaccine, you will get a scheduled appointment for the second doses.
  • Vaccination numbers are delayed due to more need of vaccinating people rather than dealing with paperwork. They are allowed up to three days to report this data to the state.
  • Asked why Arkansas decided to vaccinate those who are 70 and older rather than 75 and older, Governor Hutchinson said that based on numbers of deaths and serious illness among those over 70, as well as the higher rate of comorbidities, it made sense to include them in Phase 1-B. Other states are making similar adjustments.
  • Asked whether vaccine hesitancy has led to moving first responders up in the phases as there is more vaccine than was expected, Governor Hutchinson said that in some places only 70% of those eligible for the vaccine have accepted it. This has allowed for more groups to be moved up in the phase system.
  • Asked why there is delay in administering the current doses of vaccine, Governor Hutchinson said that hospitals have been effective in distributing doses, but that long-term care facilities have a greater logistical challenge, such as consent, additional training, and agreements with pharmacies. The Governor says that is too slow, but that he hopes this rate will increase as they work through the logistical issues.
  • Asked whether hospitals will have to start cutting back on elective procedures due to the increase in COVID patients, Governor Hutchinson said that the Winter COVID Task Force doesn’t want to restrict elective surgeries, which would cause additional issues. Hospitals can increase ICU capacity however they deem fit, without a hard and fast rule against elective surgeries.
  • Asked about marketing efforts for vaccination information to ensure that safety and other information is available to all areas of the state, Governor Hutchinson said the current marketing and educational plans are to cover every media market across the state. Information is placed on the Department of Health website which is accessible to all Arkansans.
  • Asked about the increase in case numbers causing the state to consider reimplementing any restrictions, Governor Hutchinson said that he will consider any recommendations from the Winter COVID Task Force. There are restrictions on bars and restaurants, which is not well received across the state, but has limited the spread at bars and restaurants. The current increase in cases is a result of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve parties in home environments and small gatherings. Those are not areas Governor Hutchinson is willing to regulate. That is individual responsibility, The Power of You, and there are two keys to victory over COVID: the vaccine and vigilance.
  • The business task force will meet soon to discuss any needs for the state with regards to COVID. This could include lifting some telemedicine restrictions, limiting liability for businesses relating to COVID, or allowing for more use of e-signatures for business agreements.
  • Asked whether the transition to the Biden administration would cause issues with vaccine distribution, Governor Hutchinson said that he has stressed that they do not change things that are working, and that he has a call tomorrow with the transition team to re-emphasize that as well as explain the current situation. He expects a smooth transition.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • It is a record day for total active cases at 24,408. Although we are able to handle the current numbers, we cannot continue on the current trajectory. Over the week, Fridays tend to have the highest numbers, which means that with over 4,000 cases today, this could be dangerously high on Friday. It is up to each person to follow the three W’s to help slow the spread, as they cannot stop the spread.
  • Phases for vaccine distribution may be modified. The ACIP allows each state to modify the distribution to reflect the needs of the state. The two new vaccines that are currently working their way through approval may adjust the timelines if they are approved and would help speed up vaccinations. There are 22 reported adverse effects from the vaccination so far in Arkansas, and none are serious.
  • First responders in rural Arkansas tend to be the first on scene, rather than ambulance crews like in larger cities, so it made sense to move them up in the vaccine queue. Additionally, Phase 1-B was going to include those who are 65 and older, not 75, but the limited amount of vaccine has forced the shift in the age limit. The U.S. was supposed to have 20 million doses by the end of 2020, but there was not nearly that amount, meaning that they are trying to fit the vaccination needs into the amount of vaccine that has been distributed.
  • Asked why teachers were not in Phase 1-A of the vaccination plan, Dr. Romero said that the ACIP developed the guidelines and the limitations of the vaccine numbers led to the current guidelines. The health care infrastructure needs to be able to withstand cases and the death rates at long-term care facilities led to them being in the first phase. Health care workers in schools are in the first phase, so the most high-risk individuals at schools will be in that first group vaccinated.
  • The state looks closely at contact tracing information, and the last 14 days of locations visited by those who have tested positive. There is no evidence to suggest that bars and restaurants are particular vectors of spread. The spread is coming from meeting with people in small groups outside their home or traveling to another state. The reason for the 11 p.m. curfew on bars and restaurants is to decrease socialization, not to punish bars or because they are currently big spreaders of COVID. If you have had any amount of alcohol, your ability to make responsible decisions decreases, and that is even more dangerous with COVID than it is normally.
  • The new strain of COVID can be caught in current testing, and the virus strains are monitored to see if there are any changes. The new strain has been around since September, so it is not surprising to find it here in Arkansas. There is no medical difference between the strains, so the public health issue is for the spread of the disease, not any actual treatment or vaccination issue.
  • Asked about the CDC reporting that antigen testing may not be as accurate as first believed, Dr. Romero said that as with everything with this pandemic, the science is adjusting to new data. A negative antigen test may not mean someone is negative for COVID. There are now guidelines for clinicians to help explain to patients that a negative antigen test doesn’t mean that the patient is not infected or that they will not be infected in the future. The PCR test is still the gold standard for whether someone is positive or negative for COVID.

Dr. Cam Patterson: Chancellor of UAMS, and on Winter COVID Task Force

  • Yesterday, UAMS discharged the 1,000th COVID positive patient. However, hospitals are struggling with stress on resources due to COVID patients. Last week, central Arkansas hospitals were potentially going to move into Surge Phase 2 but are still in Surge Phase 1. Surge Phase 2 for UAMS includes various measures to help with overloaded hospitals by double occupying single hospital rooms and expanding the emergency department into an adjacent parking deck. The system is holding now, but the strain will continue to increase as the number of cases increases week over week.
  • UAMS is nearing the completion of Phase 1-A vaccine first doses and has started the second doses for those who have already received their first dose. There are no reported adverse effects from the vaccine.
  • Many hospitals have already placed limits on elective surgeries. At UAMS, elective surgeries that would require the use of an inpatient bed are not scheduled now to allow for more beds for COVID patients.
  • Asked about whether there is significant resistance to getting vaccinated among health care workers, Dr. Patterson said that the overall number of people willing to get the vaccine has increase over the last two months from around 50% to around 60%. With the 4,000 workers at UAMS, 30% were reluctant to get the vaccine, even with the information they have as employees at UAMS. The main reason for the reluctance is safety. There are many untrustworthy sources that are out there, so the health care industry and the government need to do a better job to make it clear that the vaccines are safe to take. There has not been a single significant adverse effect among all the vaccinations at UAMS, which is not something that you could say about the standard flu vaccine.

Dr. John Vinson: CEO, Arkansas Pharmacists Association

  • Pharmacies and pharmacists are ready to vaccinate Arkansans. They expect to have over 46,000 doses to distribute this week across 73 of the 75 counties in Arkansas. Prior to this week, only 30 pharmacies across the state have received vaccines for the long-term care facilities. This will change, as 212 pharmacies will have vaccine doses distributed, so that they can “bring the heat” to the virus.
  • Local pharmacies who received the doses for long-term care facilities were able to start administering the doses within 72 hours. Larger pharmacies have been able to schedule vaccinations by January 21. Any long-term care facilities that haven’t been able to schedule vaccinations should reach out to the APA or the Department of Health to help with any issues.
  • With respect to the 70 rather than 75 and over, as the vaccine comes in vials with six or 10 doses, a slightly larger population will allow for less potential for wasted doses, as it’s easier to schedule appointments before the vial is wasted.

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • The first CARES act included $15 million for sick leave for teachers if they were either positive or quarantining after COVID exposure. Those funds have been depleted. The Department of Education encourages school districts to continue that policy to help teachers, using local funds or the new federal funds from the most recent stimulus package. A new memo will be distributed this week to give all information needed, including a model policy, to set up the policy in their district. The reason why this is only recommended rather than required is a result of the difference in the structure of the funding. The state cannot require this new federal funding be used in a particular manner.
  • Asked whether students will be required to take standardized testing in school even if students are in remote learning environments, Secretary Key said that Congress is still requiring the tests to be administered. The Department of Education is working with school districts to ensure they can be administered safely on site. Around $800 million is dependent on 95% of students taking these tests. It is also important to know what the impact of the pandemic has been on students, both overall as well as those who are remote learning.

Solomon Graves: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Corrections

  • There are 286 active cases in the correctional facility inmate population, with four currently hospitalized, and 153 members of the staff currently have COVID. Vaccinations have begun for the medical staff and security staff assigned to the medical facilities. There are 975 doses, which is enough for all staff in Phase 1-A at correctional facilities.

 

 

1/4/2021

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 846 confirmed cases since yesterday, January 3, for a total of 193,655 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 460 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 41,126 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,459 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 173,995 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,598 active probable cases and there have been 33,903 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,178 confirmed and 622 probable. There are 1,296 hospitalized patients with 212 on ventilators, both new records.

 

Yesterday, 4,473 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in January to 26,925. Additionally, there were 439 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 3,808.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

12/31/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,837 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 30, a new record, for a total of 186,784 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 871 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 38,354 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,780 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 167,893 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,409 active probable cases and there have been 31,354 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,088 confirmed and 588 probable. There are 1,195 hospitalized patients, with 209 on ventilators, both new records.

 

Yesterday, 13,666 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 357,014. Additionally, there were 3,163 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 88,492.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

12/30/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,320 confirmed cases since yesterday December 29, for a total of 184,947 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 864 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 37,483 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,658 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 166,198 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,195 probable active cases and there have been 30,716 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,068 confirmed and 569 probable. There are 1,174 hospitalized patients with 205 on ventilators, both new records.

 

Yesterday, 8,843 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in December to 340,340. Additionally, there were 4,398 antigen tests performed yesterday, a new record, for a total of 85,329 tests this month.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new daily cases of COVID-19. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. The purple line is a seven-day rolling average of the number of PCR tests performed each day. The burgundy line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

12/29/2020

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 1,449 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 28, for a total of 182,627 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 1,269 probable cases since yesterday, a new record, for a total of 36,619 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,158 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 164,404 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,023 active probable cases and there have been 30,032 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,042 confirmed and 561 probable, with the total of 66 combined deaths a new record. There are 1,161 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 198 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 5,307 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 330,169. Additionally, there were 6,457 antigen tests performed yesterday, a new record, increasing the monthly total to 80,931. This is the first day that antigen testing is higher than PCR testing.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • In consultation with Dr. Romero and other health care officials, Governor Hutchinson is extending the health care emergency for another 60 days until the end of February. The Governor expects that they will take this up in the coming session, as they had expressed when they declined to take up his request for a Committee of the Whole meeting to affirm the previous declaration of health care emergency.
  • Arkansas has received 31,700 Moderna doses as of this morning, but only 1,780 doses have been administered to long-term care facility workers. Hospitals have administered 48.2% of all Pfizer doses to health care workers. Governor Hutchinson is asking all pharmacies to help distribute and administer the vaccines faster, so that by the end of January, all health care workers and long-term care facility residents and staff will be vaccinated. There will be an announcement in January to set who would be included in Phase 1B of the vaccination plan.
  • Most Arkansans took extra care during Thanksgiving, but even with that, the new daily cases increased by about 33%. Hospitalizations increased by about 10%. At Christmas, there has been increased travel across the country, and that means that there is a potential increase in cases and hospitalizations. Even with increased therapeutics and better treatments, that is a concerning trend.
  • Statewide, as of this morning, 5% of ICU beds are available, 21% of hospital beds are available, and 60% of ventilators are available.
  • The COVID relief package is helpful, and the state is preparing to set up what is needed to distribute unemployment insurance and other funds to help distribute the vaccines. The bill should include around $800 million for education in the state.
  • Asked about previous expected higher numbers of Moderna vaccine doses for the state compared to the lower number reported as of this morning, Governor Hutchinson said that they are receiving more doses per day and they may still hit the expected 50,000 doses for this week. The delay for the administering of the vaccine in long-term care facilities is a result of multiple issues. Informed consent from stakeholders and training people to administer the vaccine are easier in a hospital environment than at long-term care facilities.
  • The state will look into whether there will be a need to extend the ban on bars and restaurants being open past 11 p.m. It is currently set to expire on January 3.
  • Asked about the new money in the relief bill for the expansion of Medicaid to Marshallese and other displaced people and how those costs will be shared between the state and the federal government, Governor Hutchinson said that it was a positive development to cover them and will improve their health care at an important time. The increase in costs for the state for this extension of Medicaid coverage is not clear yet, but whatever the costs are, the state will cover around 33% of it.
  • Asked about whether he was concerned about bars and restaurants complying with the COVID restrictions for the New Year’s Eve holiday, Governor Hutchinson said that he was not as they had been working very hard to comply with public health guidelines. Fines and warnings have been issued by the compliance officers when locations do not follow the guidelines.
  • Asked about reports that fire fighters in Northwest Arkansas have been vaccinated already, Governor Hutchinson reminded everyone that the state includes health care workers, emergency responders, and people at long-term care facilities as part of 1A in the vaccination plan. Additionally, effort is made to not waste any vaccine, and so all doses will be used, moving through the priorities as needed until the current doses of the vaccines are finished.
  • Asked if there is any predictive modeling about what sort of increase in hospital capacity will be needed over the coming months, Governor Hutchinson said that it does exist, but that he isn’t aware of exactly what it says. That modeling led to the increase in beds that Baptist Health has started to bring online, and the Winter COVID Task Force will make additional recommendations as needed based on the modeling.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • Further increases in cases is expected due to New Year’s Eve parties. Small groups and nuclear family groups are strongly recommended. Additional cases threaten to overwhelm the capabilities of the health care system. Please follow the three W’s: wash your hands, wear your mask, and watch your distance. Have a safe and happy New Year, with your family in your home.
  • Some of the Moderna vaccine has been given directly to larger pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens, and the state is going to keep track of people who are vaccinated through both local and national pharmacies. Dr. Romero was not sure about the status of the state’s preparations for tracking vaccinations.

Dr. Jerrilyn Jones: Preparedness Medical Director, Arkansas Department of Health

  • COVIDComm has been successful in moving 64 patients to a different facility in the last two weeks. There were 207 requests for 122 patients in total. The lack of being able to move all 122 patients is a result of an uneven distribution of available beds and facilities across the state, as well as the need for those beds for non-COVID patients. Some of the patients have been sent to other states for care, as well as some Arkansas facilities caring for out-of-state patients.
  • Asked about the difficulties with distribution of patients, Dr. Jones said that they are working to resolve any issues that have arisen within the first two weeks. These issues include that some data is out-of-date or a bed may have been listed when there is no staff to cover it. Different hospitals have different plans for how to deal with the patients before they have been redistributed by COVIDComm, but most are kept in the emergency department.

Rachel Bunch: Executive Director of the Arkansas Health Care Association

  • It is a complicated logistical process to distribute the vaccines. There is work being done to speed up the process for those at long-term care facilities, including consent forms for the patients and their guardians. There are over 300 facilities across the state that will need the vaccines. Local pharmacies have been working late nights to prepare for vaccine distribution. The federal government is saying that by January 16 all locations that want a clinic will be offered one.
  • Some pharmacies received vaccines on Monday of last week, but others didn’t until Wednesday or Thursday. With key staff taking off for the holidays, they were not able to administer the vaccines as quickly as they would like.

Johnny Key: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Education

  • The additional education funding will use the previous framework for distribution. The Governor’s Educational Emergency Relief (GEER) funds will total $36.4 million. The Higher Education Emergency Relief (HEER) funds will be $205 million, which will mostly be distributed directly to the institutions themselves. The Elementary and Secondary Education Relief (ESER) funds will total $558 million. The new legislation did add some additional language to allow some of that money to be used for repairs and other work to help reduce the risk of virus transmission on school grounds.

 

 

12/28/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 889 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 27, for a total of 181,178 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 762 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 35,350 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,363 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 162,787 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,468 active probable cases and there have been 29,347 probable recoveries. Total deaths—3,005 confirmed and 532 probable. There are 1,155 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 201 on ventilators, tied for the record.

 

Yesterday, 4,382 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 323,530. Additionally, there were 2,272 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 74,376.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

12/23/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,000 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 22, for a total of 174,782 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 893 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 33,159 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,374 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 155,447 confirmed recoveries. There are 6,142 probable active cases, a new record, and there have been 26,577 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,939 confirmed and 437 probable. There are 1,110 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 174 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,604 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in December to 273,085. Additionally, there were 3,697 antigen tests performed yesterday, a new record, for a total of 63,179 tests this month.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new daily cases of COVID-19. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. The purple line is a seven-day rolling average of the number of PCR tests performed each day. The burgundy line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.

 

 

 

12/22/2020

COVID-19 Cases

There have been 1,110 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 21, for a total of 172,782 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 831 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 32,266 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,173 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 153,677 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,806 active probable cases and there have been 26,029 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,910 confirmed and 428 probable. There are 1,103 hospitalized patients, a new record, with 173 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 7,169 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 263,310. Additionally, there were 4,010 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 59,433.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

COVID-19 Updates

Governor Asa Hutchinson Press Conference

Governor Hutchinson

  • The hope for the future of the state is the vaccine. Thousands of doses have been coming into the state. There will be a large increase in capability of vaccination next Monday. As of this morning, 12,969 health care workers have been given the first dose of the vaccine in Arkansas over the first week it has been available. The state has been notified of its allocation for next week consisting of 23,400 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and future second doses for all those who have already received the first dose. The Moderna vaccine will be available for long-term care residents and staff, and there will be 17,700 doses available.
  • No decisions have been made for who will be prioritized for the next round of vaccines after health care workers and those in long-term care facilities. 1A is set for the vaccine. 1B, the essential workers, is being worked on, using CDC recommendations, as well as the importance of various industries in Arkansas. The over 75 population is also in the mix, but they expect to have more information next week. The Governor would like to hear from these groups in case any changes are needed, but there is no real rush as they are still in 1A.
  • Even though the hospitalizations have increased, they are not as high as anticipated after Thanksgiving, placing the state is in a better than expected position. As such, although the Veterans Hospital was opened to allow the use of eight beds for COVID patients, only two have been used so far.
  • Today, the state is partnering with the Baptist Health system to build out more hospital capacity in expectation of additional hospitalizations due to the Christmas holiday. This will add 124 new beds, both ICU and regular hospital beds, in Van Buren and central Arkansas. These beds will be managed by COVIDComm to allow for those outside the area to be able to use these beds as necessary. This will cost $7.4 million, with a hope that FEMA will cover 80% of the costs, and the state would cover the remaining 20% with previously allocated emergency management funds. This build out is one of the recommendations from the Winter COVID Task Force.
  • The Department of Health will be posting the directive for indoor venues that has been worked on for the past few weeks. This reduces the size that would require prior approval for safety precautions from the Department of Health from 100 to 10. This is to ensure the safety of indoor venues, not to limit events to 10 people. If the venue can prepare a safety plan for more attendees, it can still take place. This limitation does not apply to places of worship, retail businesses, community or school sponsored sports, restaurants, bars, or residences. All of those are either not regulated or are covered by another directive. This new directive will go into effect on January 2 and will run until March 1. These additional requests are not going to require more staffing, because the number of events has dropped due to the increased cases.
  • Asked about whether the limited number of ICU beds across the state is concerning, Governor Hutchinson said that is why COVIDComm was created, to manage those areas in the state where ICU beds are unavailable.
  • Asked about whether the January 1st increase to $11 an hour in the minimum wage in Arkansas will need to be delayed due to small businesses struggling, Governor Hutchinson said that he has not considered any delay. The increase is set by constitutional amendment, so any delay would not be possible anyway. Most issues for small businesses are more directly COVID related, not this increase in the minimum wage. With the new federal relief package, small businesses can get additional PPP funding, and the states will receive some help as well.
  • Asked about the UAMS report released today that said that most Arkansans would comply with mandated mitigation requirements, but wouldn’t if they are not mandated, Governor Hutchinson said that he hadn’t seen the report. While traveling, the Governor has seen compliance with all current mandates, and any future plans will be discussed before being put in place.
  • Asked about the relief bill allowing CARES Act money to be spent for a longer period, Governor Hutchinson said that they needed to wait for the bill to become law to say for sure what kind of needs could be covered. The additional money for broadband access will be very helpful for the state, as will money for rental and food bank assistance.
  • There are two main points to victory in this pandemic: the vaccine and vigilance. Please be vigilant this holiday season so that we can all make it to the vaccine.

Dr. Jose Romero: Secretary, Arkansas Department of Health

  • There is a large supply of monoclonal antibody treatments, which is highly recommended for senior citizens early after their positive test. They should reach out to see if they would qualify for the treatment.
  • The vaccine rollout has been successful, with no major glitches. About 51% of doses the state has received have been distributed. The vaccines have been studied well, and are safe, but the state is still tracking all those who have been vaccinated. As of Sunday, six people across the country have had some form of allergic reaction to the vaccine, and all those have recovered.
  • As we get closer to the holidays, please limit your gatherings to your household, wear your mask at all times, wash your hands, and watch your distance.
  • Due to the limitations of vaccine availability, there was a compromise to move those over 65 to a higher priority, as the models predict a much higher mortality rate for them compared to the younger population. This has also led to a split in the essential worker tier, where the first group will be first responders, educators, food and agriculture workers, manufacturing, corrections workers, postal workers, transit workers, and grocery store workers. After that group would be when the over 75 population would start getting the vaccine. If the amount of vaccine changes, adjustments could be made, but states have been given an epidemiologically sound recommendation for vaccine priority.
  • Asked about when Arkansas will move into starting to vaccinate those in 1B, Dr. Romero said that states have flexibility, but that it is thought that once the state hits 80% saturation of 1A, or if demand falls, that is when those in 1B would start to be vaccinated. Dr. Romero thinks it will take four to six weeks to get through 1A, even as they are working as hard as they can to vaccinate quickly.

Troy Wells: CEO, Baptist Health, member of Winter COVID Task Force

  • The Winter COVID Task Force will continue to look at additional capacity if needed. The first of two locations for the expanded hospital beds will be at the J.A. Gilbreath Conference Center at the Baptist Health Little Rock campus, where 50 beds will be placed that are capable of handling COVID patients. That will take about four to five weeks, and construction started last week. The Van Buren campus expansion of 74 beds, including eight ICU beds, will take about six to eight weeks, but in phases, where some beds could be ready sooner if needed.
  • These new facilities have not been staffed yet, either nurses or other pharmacy and support staff, although having them on the sites of the hospitals would allow for easier staffing. They are actively recruiting more staff, which is easier for the non-nursing staff. They are working on a plan to hire more nurses.
  • Within the next two to three weeks, another 30 ICU beds will become available across Baptist Health hospitals in the state.

Dr. Ivy Pfeffer: Deputy Commissioner, Arkansas Department of Education

  • The state will look at the new relief package funding to see what is available for schools and remote learning. Technology will need to be addressed to ensure that schools are able to pivot to remote learning if needed. Funding has also been beneficial for contact tracing at schools.

 

 

12/21/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,069 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 20, for a total of 171,672 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 388 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 31,435 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,589 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 152,76 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,569 active probable cases and there have been 25,453 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,885 confirmed and 410 probable, a tie for the highest number of deaths reported in one day. There are 1,078 hospitalized patients, with 174 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 9,178 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 255,005. Additionally, there were 1,013 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 55,309.

 

Governor Hutchinson made this statement: “Today we began receiving shipments of the Moderna vaccine (5,900 doses), with additional shipments expected tomorrow and Wednesday. We also received a second shipment of the Pfizer vaccine (18,575 doses). While this news provides hope for many, it is a continued concern to see the loss of 58 additional Arkansans (20 are delayed reports). We must steel our resolve to take every precaution to keep everyone safe.”

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

12/18/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There were 1,922 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 17, for a total of 167,434 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 956 probable cases since yesterday, a new record, for a total of 29,987 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 16,682 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas, a new record, and there have been 147,953 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,710 active probable cases, a new record, and there have been 23,911 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,776 confirmed and 363 probable. There are 1,073 hospitalized patients, with 181 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 13,816 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 217,750. Additionally, there were 5,262 antigen tests performed yesterday, a new record, increasing the monthly total to 49,812.

 

Governor Hutchinson has extended the state of emergency due to COVID until the end of December, and has called on the General Assembly to affirm the extension. Governor Hutchinson also said that roughly 40% of all Arkansans have been tested for COVID.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

12/17/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 2,282 confirmed cases since yesterday December 16, a new record, for a total of 165,512 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 757 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 29,031 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The total of 3,039 new combined cases is a new record. There are 16,446 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 146,287 confirmed recoveries. There are 5,213 active probable cases, a new record, and there have been 23,458 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,755 confirmed and 357 probable. There are 1,084 hospitalized patients, with 188 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 14,056 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total performed in December to 202,725. Additionally, there were 3,275 antigen tests performed yesterday, increasing the monthly total to 44,492.

 

The below chart shows the trend in cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. The red line is the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the state since March 1. The orange line is the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases in the state since March 1. The blue line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed cases reported each day. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction. The data are from the Arkansas Department of Health and are current as of this afternoon.

 

 

 

12/16/2020

COVID-19 Cases

NOTE: On September 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that he will no longer hold daily COVID-19 briefings, but will hold briefings on a weekly or “as needed” basis. inVeritas will continue to provide detailed updates as briefings are held. On a daily basis, we will continue to provide our charts with available data, as provided by the Arkansas Department of Health.

 

There have been 1,638 confirmed cases since yesterday, December 15, for a total of 163,230 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There have been 668 probable cases since yesterday for a total of 28,274 probable cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas. There are 15,862 confirmed active cases of COVID in Arkansas and there have been 144,621 confirmed recoveries. There are 4,912 probable active cases and there have been 23,010 probable recoveries. Total deaths—2,725 confirmed and 349 probable, with the combined 58 deaths yesterday being a new record. There are 1,079 hospitalized patients with 184 on ventilators.

 

Yesterday, 8,885 PCR tests were performed, bringing the total PCR tests in December to 187,828. Additionally, there were 4,696 antigen tests performed yesterday, a new record, for a total of 41,217 tests this month.

 

The chart below reflects Arkansas’s COVID-19 cases compared to testing in the state. The blue line is the seven-day rolling average of the number of new daily cases of COVID-19. The green line shows the seven-day rolling average for new confirmed and probable cases reported each day. The purple line is a seven-day rolling average of the number of PCR tests performed each day. The burgundy line is the seven-day rolling average of combined PCR and antigen tests performed each day. This approach controls for variations in data collection and correction.

 

The seven-day testing average data reflects the Arkansas Department of Health statistics whenever available. When data is unavailable, a mathematical adjustment has been made to reflect estimated testing on that day.