Daily COVID-19 hospitalizations set a record for the second consecutive day, and a report from the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement shows a record number of school districts in areas with high COVID spread.
The Arkansas Department of Health reported Wednesday that hospitalizations rose by 7 to 1,110, a new record from Tuesday’s record of 1,093. Total known cumulative confirmed and probable cases rose by 2,893 to 207,941, and active confirmed and probable cases rose by 537 to 22,516. Total confirmed and probable deaths rose by 38 to 3,376.
“Today’s high number of cases is concerning as we’re two days away from Christmas. This is frequently a time to gather with our family in large groups, but this year that presents an increased risk of spreading COVID-19, so let’s plan with our safety guidelines in mind. Please protect yourself and your family,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said in a statement.
The ACHI also reported Wednesday that 182 Arkansas school districts have had 50 or more new known COVID-19 infections per 10,000 district residents over a 14-day period — up from 150 a week ago — which is a new record high for the second week in a row. ACHI also found that 33 school districts — up from 23 the previous week and also a record high for the second consecutive week — had exceeded 100 new known infections per 10,000 district residents over a 14-day period.
“What these numbers reflect is that Arkansas is experiencing uncontrolled spread of the coronavirus at a time when families, friends, and neighbors traditionally gather for holiday celebrations,” said ACHI President and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson. “Our actions to break the spread of this virus are critical to our schools, hospitals, and communities. We need to make this Christmas season different and take all precautions so that our loved ones are with us for a more traditional holiday next year.”
COVID REPORT – Dec. 23
New known COVID-19 cases, active cases, tests
- 174,782 known cumulative PCR cases, with 1,860 new community cases and 140 reported cases in correctional facilities
- 33,159 probable cases, up from 32,266 on Tuesday
- There are 16,374 active cases, up from 16,173 on Tuesday
- There were 8,604 test results provided in the previous 24 hours
- There were 3,697 antigen tests in the previous 24 hours
- 2,993, up 24
- 437 probable COVID-related deaths, up 9
Hospitalizations: 1,110, up 7
Ventilators: 174, up 1
Recovered cases: 155,447
The top five counties with new known cases reported Wednesday were: Washington (272), Pulaski (265), Benton (260), Faulkner (123), and Craighead (109). The counties accounted for 55.3% of the 1,860 new community cases.
As of Wednesday at 3 p.m., there were 18,364,615 U.S. cases and 324,905 deaths. Globally, there were 78,437,021 cases and 1,725,311 deaths.