At least one-third of the reported COVID-19 deaths in the state are in Northeast Arkansas and a slew of residents and staff at a Marion nursing home reportedly have the disease.
The Arkansas Department of Health on Wednesday (April 8) stated that 18 people have died from the disease in the Natural State and six of them are from Northeast Arkansas counties.
Crittenden County with 64 confirmed cases, and adjacent St. Francis County with 29 cases remain at the region’s epicenter for the outbreak. The totals in Crittenden County remain the fourth highest of any county in the state.
Part of what may have fueled those numbers is a reported outbreak at the Willowbend Healthcare and Rehab facility in Marion. At least 10 residents and two staffers have tested positive and are in quarantine, according to WMC 5 in Memphis. No other details were given.
The disease continues to grow in counties throughout Northeast Arkansas, but there are still no confirmed cases in Jackson County. It’s still one of a handful of counties statewide with no reported cases, but officials have warned it’s likely infiltrated the entire state at this point.
Criaghead County now has 23 confirmed cases, while Randolph, Greene, and Poinsett counties have six each. Cross County has five cases. Sharp, Lawrence, Clay and Mississippi counties each have between one and four cases.
All K-12 in-person classes have been canceled for the year, and Black River Technical College with campuses in Pocahontas and Paragould has made the decision to cancel all in-person classes for the rest of the school year. Classes have been moved online to accommodate students. The first summer semester at BRTC will be online only, the school announced this week.