(07/20/20) Garland County among top counties again

Garland County again has 24 new cases reported today

The following statistics were shared Monday at Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s daily COVID-19 news conference in Little Rock and posted on the Arkansas Department of Health’s website:

  • 33,927 total confirmed cases, up 699 from 31,762 on Friday.
  • 7,127 active cases, up 494 from Friday.
  • 26,397 recoveries, up 1,621 from Friday.
  • 363 deaths, up 10 from Friday.
  • 471 cases requiring hospitalization, up seven from Friday.
  • 111 cases requiring a ventilator, up 17 from Friday.  
  • 473 cumulative cases in Garland County, up 79 from Friday.
  • 150 active cases in Garland County, up 57 from Friday.
  • 318 recoveries in Garland County, up 22 from Friday.
  • 5 deaths in Garland County, no change from Friday.

In the past 24 hours, the number of new cases was 699, with 11 from correctional facilities and 688 from the community. The top counties with new cases were Washington (94), Pulaski (60), Benton (57), Craighead (28), Mississippi (26), Pope (26), Sebastian (25), Garland (24), Miller (24), Arkansas (21) and Faulkner (21). There was a total of 5,689 test results reported in the past 24 hours. New case counts from the weekend included 771 reported on Saturday and 695 on Sunday.

Hutchinson showed a graph comparing hospitalizations per 100,000 residents among southern states, and Arkansas was third behind Alabama and Mississippi. The governor pointed out that our state is well ahead of Texas, which has been on the national news for their hospital capacity challenges, as well as six other states.

He announced he is authorizing 10 National Guard personnel to support case management work at Washington Region Medical Center for the next 30 days as a short-term relief effort for that hospital.

The backdrop for today’s press conference featured a “Together for Arkansas” logo, which he extrapolated to mean “neighbors helping neighbors” during COVID-19 by wearing face masks. “It is surprising to me how many people still think that wearing a mask is about protecting yourself,” he said. Today is the first day of the statewide mask mandate, and Hutchinson reiterated the details as he said “there is still a lot of confusion.” The mandate requires anyone outdoors or indoors, who cannot socially distance by at least 6 feet, to wear a facial covering. There is a list of exceptions, and the directive is available at healthy.arkansas.gov.

Hutchinson explained that additional electric utility bill assistance will be available to Arkansans through the CARES Act. Beginning July 27, and running through Sept. 30, 2021, or until the $8.2 million in funding is expended, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program will assist households struggling with their electric or utility bills. The program’s usual limit of $500 will be raised to $1,500. The program also includes assistance with winter-heating fuels, as well as a supplemental program for air-conditioning assistance to families that meet specific criteria. The Garland County contact for the program was listed as an email address – CSO-LIHEAPHELP@CSOArkansas.org. There will be additional contact information listed on the Arkansas Department of Energy and Environment website.