New daily COVID-19 cases still declining; deaths and hospitalizations rise

by Michael Tilley ([email protected]) 476 views 

New known daily COVID-19 cases in Arkansas continue to be below 500 with the number of daily test results also trending lower. Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Tuesday (Aug. 18) during his daily briefing that testing levels are “sufficient” to help officials work to contain the spread.

Known COVID-19 cases in Arkansas totaled 53,487 on Tuesday, up from 53,077 on Monday, with 4,675 test results from the previous 24 hours. Testing was again below the 5,500-6,000 that were typical in most of June and July. Of the 410 new cases, 85 were from correctional facilities. There are 5,898 active cases.

The number of deaths rose from 603 to 619. The number of COVID patients hospitalized in Arkansas was 492 on Tuesday, up from 486 on Monday. There are 122 patients on ventilators, up from 120 on Monday. There are 46,970 cumulative recovered cases.

Only three counties had 20 or more cases: Sebastian (44), Pulaski (40) and Washington (29). The three counties accounted for 34.7% of the 325 new community cases.

As of Tuesday at 1 p.m., there were 5,457,877 U.S. cases and 171,013 deaths. Globally, there were 21,956,417 cases and 775,706 deaths.

Gov. Hutchinson said recent testing levels of more than 4,000 a day are much higher than three months ago and help show where the virus is, but he would “like to get it (number of tests) a little bit higher than that.”

“I think that we’re doing sufficient testing to give us a good idea as to the level of the spread of the virus. I think that it’s clear that we are either flat or going down, and that could depend upon the level of testing that you’re doing. … I’m comfortable that we’re getting a sense as to where we are with the virus and the extent of its spread,” he said.