Arkansas health officials warn current COVID-19 surge could continue to skyrocket next week

Coronavirus

Friday marked the fourth day in a row where the state broke its previous daily record, and state health leaders are suggesting that it may not be slowing down anytime soon.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – As Arkansas keeps shattering its record number of single-day and active cases, hospitals are bracing for impact.

Friday marked the fourth day in a row where the state broke its previous day record, and state health leaders are suggesting that it may not be slowing down anytime soon.

Active cases Friday neared 51, a 584% increase from last month. That kind of jump is really no surprise because a week ago the state’s health secretary said daily cases would likely double, and that is exactly what they have done.

Dr. Jennifer Dillaha, the director of immunizations with the Arkansas Department of Health, said the caseload seen Friday, which was just under 8,500 new cases, is like to continue to grow.

“It could happen that it could double next week,” Dillaha explained. “I do not have a good prediction for when we will hit our peak and turn it around. We’re not there yet and we do not have signs of showing that we are near it yet.”

Dillaha said that while more people are hospitalized with the virus, there is concern that Arkansas Children’s Hospital could soon be overwhelmed. As of Friday evening, the facility had 19 COVID-positive patients, with four in the ICU.

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