The Arkansas Department of Health announced that COVID-19 cases in Arkansas increased by 3,212 on Tuesday, down significantly from the average daily increase of close to 9,000 cases per day we've seen in the state recently. It is also less than half of the number of new cases announced last Monday, Jan. 11 (7,756).
As a result, active cases went down for the second straight day, down 4,373 on Tuesday to 88,938.
Hospitalizations trends tend to lag a few weeks behind big case increases, however, and hospitalizations as a result of the large case increases the past few weeks continue to rise in the state. Hospitalizations were up 67 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of patients hospitalized in the state to an all time high of 1,487.
"Today’s report shows we are at the highest level of hospitalizations during the Pandemic," Governor Asa Hutchinson posted to his Twitter account on Tuesday. "We have already coordinated to expand capacity."
State officials also announced 15 new deaths, bringing the total number of deaths in the state as a result of the pandemic to 9,452.
There are currently 171 patients in the state on ventilators, down one from the day previous.
There are 88,938 cases of COVID-19 considered active in the state, which includes those that have tested positive by both PCR and antigen testing methods. The ADH dashboard currently lists 7,119 active cases in Washington County and 6,338 in Benton County.
There were 8,356 tests and 5,289 antigen tests announced Tuesday.
The new cases bring the total cumulative count in Arkansas to 689,989 since the pandemic began.
The top counties for new cases on Thursday were Pulaski (476), Benton (448), and Washington (294).
Arkansas is averaging 8,958 new cases per day, or 297 per 100,000 residents over the last two weeks. According to the New York Times COVID-19 tracker, cases in the state are up by 171% over the last 14 days.
The state announced that 5,496 additional doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, bringing the total number of doses given by the state to 3,825,967. The state lists 371,494 as partially immunized, and 1,529,422 individuals as fully immunized.
All Arkansans ages 5 and older are currently eligible for a vaccine. Those who need assistance locating a vaccine can call 1-800-985-6030.