Arkansas reached yet another grim milestone in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic Saturday, when the total number of known COVID-19 deaths in the state passed 10,000.
Two days after Arkansas Department of Health officials reported a cumulative death toll of 10,025 Arkansans, Gov. Asa Hutchinson and members of the General Assembly honored healthcare workers at the 2022 State of the State Address.
In a tweet Tuesday, Hutchinson reiterated that the state’s death rate is high despite declining cases, and once again urged vaccination.
“We continue to see key metrics like new and active cases and hospitalizations decline,” Hutchinson said in the tweet. “Regrettably, we are still seeing a high number of deaths, and over 81% of COVID deaths have been unvaccinated. It’s critical we all get vaccinated.”
The ADH reported 44 new deaths from COVID-19 Tuesday. The additional deaths bring the toll in Arkansas to 10,141, up 246 in a week.
Statewide, active COVID-19 cases fell by 1,727 in a day and by 15,750 in a week to 14,552 Tuesday, according to the ADH. Cumulative cases increased by 1,685 Tuesday, for a total of 809,396. That number rose by 11,360 in a week.
Hospitalizations in Arkansas fell to 1,050 Tuesday, down by 32 in a day and 309 in a week. Statewide, 157 patients were on ventilators Tuesday, a decrease of eight from Monday and 39 from Feb. 8.
State health officials had administered more than 3.92 million vaccine doses to Arkansans by Tuesday, with 370,780 people partially immunized and almost 1.56 million people fully immunized, according to the ADH. Officials administered 3,846 new doses — including third and booster doses — between Monday and Tuesday, with 19,871 administered in a week.
The nearly 1.56 million fully vaccinated Arkansans represent almost 55% of the state’s 5-and-up population. Almost 69% of Americans 5 and older have been fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Seventy-eight percent of Arkansas’ all-time vaccine supply — over five million doses — had been administered by Tuesday.
Washington County officials reported 1,078 active COVID-19 cases Tuesday, according to the ADH. Benton County officials reported 1,128 active cases. Total cumulative cases in the two counties increased by 850 and 912, respectively, in a week.
There were 45 active COVID-19 cases recorded on the UA campus during the Feb. 7-13 reporting period, down nine from the previous week, according to the Pat Walker Health Center COVID-19 Dashboard. Of active cases, 31 were students, one was a graduate assistant, two were faculty, five were staff, and six were not affiliated with the UofA.
PWHC officials recorded 95 total new cases last week, 60 of which were self-reported, 26 identified through on-campus testing, and nine identified by testing authorities not affiliated with the UofA. An additional 205 on-campus tests came back negative, for a weekly positivity rate of 11.3%.
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