Another Daily Record Set For Arkansas COVID Hospitalizations; Deaths Reach 3,800

Lines of cars with people being tested for COVID-19 stream through a garage at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences on July 13, 2020. On Monday, hospitalizations reached a new high.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

COVID-19 hospitalizations again set a new daily record in Monday’s Arkansas Department of Health report, rising by 62 to 1,296. Available ICU beds fell from 58 on Sunday to 49 on Monday. COVID deaths reached 3,800.

Also on Monday, Northwest Arkansas hospitals reported reaching a record of 128 patients in their COVID-19 units. The previous record was 122. The region has been one of the hardest hit in the state by the pandemic.

“We have continued to manage the increased volume of patients within our own surge planning along with the regional surge plan. We have plans for what happens if we exceed that capacity, which we will institute regionally if necessary,” Mercy Northwest Hospital President Eric Pianalto said in a statement.

Pianalto and Larry Shackleford, president of Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville, said in a joint statement the continued rise in cases is pressuring healthcare workers.

“These consistent, high numbers for long periods of time continue to cause us concern for our staff. Thankfully they are holding steady and we are trying to ensure they get rest and respite. They are incredibly dedicated to caring for all patients with quality and compassionate care,” they noted in the statement.

Monday’s ADH report showed that cumulative known confirmed and probable cases rose by 1,306 to 234,781, and active confirmed and probable cases fell by 1,181 to 23,057. Confirmed and probable deaths rose by 51 to 3,800.

“Today’s increase in hospitalizations and the 51 new deaths from COVID-19 are vivid reminders of how many families are hurting because of this pandemic. Our health care system is stretched and the numbers are likely to increase more. Thanks to all who are doing everything they can to be safe,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said in a statement with Monday’s ADH report.

COVID REPORT – Jan 4
New known COVID-19 cases, active cases, tests

  • 193,655 known cumulative PCR cases, with 846 new community cases and 0 reported cases in correctional facilities
  • 41,126 probable cases, up from 40,666 on Sunday
  • There are 16,459 active cases, down from 17,302 on Sunday
  • There were 4,473 test results provided in the previous 24 hours
  • There were 439 antigen tests in the previous 24 hours

Deaths

  • 3,178, up 41
  • 622 probable COVID-related deaths, up 10

Hospitalizations: 1,296, up 13

Ventilators: 212, up 18

Recovered cases: 173,995

The top five counties with new known cases reported Monday were: Pulaski (206), Washington (151), Benton (117), Faulkner (96), and Sebastian (61). The counties accounted for 48.3% of the 1,306 new confirmed and probable cases.

As of Monday at 3:30 p.m., there were 20,748,806 U.S. cases and 352,645 deaths. Globally, there were 85,510,573 cases and 1,849,206 deaths.