(07/30/20) 55 new cases reported in Garland County

The following statistics were shared Thursday, July 30, at Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s daily COVID-19 news conference in Little Rock and posted on the Arkansas Department of Health’s website:

  • 41,759 total confirmed cases, up 791 from 40,968 on Wednesday. 
  • 6,580 active cases, down 16 from Wednesday.
  • 34,737 recoveries, up 799 from Wednesday.
  • 442 deaths, up eight from Wednesday.
  • 504 cases requiring hospitalization, down four from Wednesday.
  • 101 cases requiring a ventilator, down seven from Wednesday.  
  • 786 cumulative cases in Garland County, up 51 cases from Wednesday.
  • 238 active cases in Garland County, up 19 from Wednesday.
  • 541 recoveries in Garland County, up 32 from Wednesday.
  • 7 deaths in Garland County, no change from Wednesday.

In the past 24 hours, the number of new cases was 791, with 759 from the community and 32 from correctional facilities. The governor shared the top counties for new case counts, which included Pulaski with 73, Sebastian with 57, Benton with 47, Garland with 44, Washington with 37, Independence with 34, Jefferson with 31, Pope with 30, Craighead with 29, Mississippi with 23 and Faulkner with 21. The updated data on the Arkansas Department of Health’s (ADH) COVID-19 dashboard showed 51 new cases in Garland County since yesterday, with an increase of 19 active county cases to 238.

There were 5,598 test results received by ADH in the past 24 hours. Data was provided regarding statewide antigen testing since June 11. There have been 548 presumptive positive results from antigen tests, with an 11% presumptive positive rate of infection, and 4,506 negative results. Individuals with presumptive positive results are sent to a lab to have a PCR test done, according to the governor. He said that they hope to increase the amount of antigen tests being done in the state, as they offer a quick turnaround with around a 95% accuracy rate. These tests will be helpful as schools are reopened, he added, and they are hopeful that data submission to ADH will be streamlined moving forward. 

Dr. Joe Thompson, CEO of the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement (ACHI), shared an update about city-level data. City-level cumulative cases for the year were recently added to www.achi.net, and active cases at the city level will be added today. Thompson said there are more than 100 communities currently that will be listed with their respective active case counts. In addition, there are another 400 cities that will be listed that have at least one positive case.

“That puts us at 500 communities across the state with active COVID disease in their community. That is virtually every community in the state,” said Thompson. “So this is a real issue. It’s a broad issue. It’s a spreading issue. And I would ask every local leader – faith-based, community-based, family-based – to take it seriously and to do the three things we know work: wash our hands, keep our distance and wear a facial covering.”

ACHI hopes to continue to add to this city-level data, including the positive rate of infection with track and trend lines. 

Acting Secretary of Health Dr. Jose Romero gave an update on the pre-surgery COVID testing directive. Pre-surgical COVID testing had been required to ensure the safety of the individual and to prevent the transmission within the institution. Based on the number of tests done and the “very small percentage” of positive results, which was less than 1%, the requirement to pre-test will be eliminated. Romero said, though, that with the high prevalence of community transmission throughout the state, it is still recommended for physicians to continue with pre-testing.  

Hutchinson shared his appreciation to the National Guard for the great assistance given to the state through this crisis. There have been a total of 28 guardsmen assisting in the COVID-19 response, and the governor authorized an additional 14 guardsmen to assist ADH in operational support.

The governor said that tomorrow’s COVID-19 briefing will include an update on fall sports, such as cheerleading, volleyball and football.