An increase in Arkansas’ new coronavirus cases continued Monday as the reported number of people admitted to the state with covid-19 rose back to its highest level in nearly a week.
The state’s death toll from the virus, as traced by the Arkansas Department of Health, rose by two to 11,418.
The number of cases increased by 74.
While it was smaller by 66 than the increase on Sunday, it was larger by 12 than the previous Monday.
Already at its highest level since the week ending March 28, the average daily increase in case numbers over a rolling seven-day period rose to 210, an increase from an average of 176 a day the previous week.
After reaching a new high of two months a day earlier, however, the number of cases in the state considered active dropped by 93 to 2,493, as the recoveries were more than the recently reported infections.
State epidemiologist Mike Cima said a gradual upward trend in the state’s new cases, which began a few days after Easter, continued.
He noted, however, that the state’s new case numbers and other polls remain low compared to other points in the pandemic.
This is in contrast to some states, especially in the Northeast, where new cases have increased more markedly.
“It has been a gradual hike upwards to where they are now, but they have reached a point now where it is quite high,” Cima said.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Arkansas’ 1,456 cases translated over the seven days ending Sunday at a rate of 48.2 per cent. 100,000 inhabitants.
It was tied to Montana’s rate for the lowest in the country among states that had reported a full week’s data.
With 481.5 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, Rhode Island had the highest rate, followed by Washington, DC, with 459.7 cases per capita. 100,000 inhabitants and Massachusetts with 427.7 cases per. 100,000 inhabitants.
Nationwide, an increase in new cases over the past few weeks has been blamed for a more transferable version of the omicron variant known as BA.2.12.1.
According to CDC estimates updated last week, the tribe accounted for 42.6% of the country’s cases in the week ending May 7, up from 33% the week before.
“It’s possible we just did not really carry the bulk of what that variant is going to bring,” Cima said of Arkansas’ coronavirus measurements.
But he added that even in states where the increase in new cases has been greater, daily hospitalizations and deaths “really do not change significantly.”
“They have increased in certain areas, and hospital admissions in particular may have increased slightly, but it is not at such a burdensome level to tax the health care system as we saw in January and February,” Cima said.
MORE AT HOSPITALS
The number of people reported to be hospitalized in Arkansas with covid-19 rose Monday to eight to 52 after falling the previous three days.
The number of state virus patients reported to be on ventilator remained for the second day at eight, the lowest level since March 25, 2020.
After declining over the previous three days, the number reported to be on intensive care increased by one to 19.
At its hospitals in Little Rock and Springdale, Arkansas Children’s four covid-19 patients had Monday, the same number as Thursday, spokeswoman Hilary DeMillo said.
CASES AFTER COUNTY
Pulaski County had the most new cases, 18, on Monday, followed by Benton County with nine and Faulkner County with six.
The state’s cumulative count of cases since March 2020 increased to 838,684.
The Ministry of Health’s number of vaccine doses that had been administered increased by 168, which was 46 greater than the record low daily increase a week earlier.
The number of people receiving the vaccine for the first time increased by 46, which was an increase of 13 from the increase in the first doses a week earlier.
Growing for the seventh day in a row, the average number of total doses administered each day over a rolling seven-day period rose to 1,445, an increase from just over 1,200 a day the previous week.
The average of the first doses increased to 328.
According to the CDC, 66.9% of Arkansans had received at least one dose as of Monday, up from 66.8% a day earlier.
The percentage fully vaccinated remained at 54.6%.
Of those who were fully vaccinated, the percentage who had received a booster dose of 39.9% remained.
Among the states and the District of Columbia, Arkansas ranked as number 37 in the percentage of its residents who had received at least one dose.
In the percentage that was fully vaccinated, it was roughly tied with Tennessee in 46th place ahead of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Wyoming.
Nationwide, 77.7% of the population had received at least one dose and 66.4% were fully vaccinated.
Of the fully vaccinated population nationwide, 46.4% had received a booster dose.