LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — As new numbers are reported by the Arkansas Department of Health, UAMS released its latest COVID-19 models that show the state could have 30,000 more cases in the next few weeks. 

These projections say the state of Arkansas will see 15,000 new COVID-19 cases by July 26th. Many of these new cases in young adults and children, but they hope these latest numbers will encourage vaccinations. 

UAMS Associate Dean for research, Ben Amick is reminding people it’s not time to relax on wearing masks, washing your hands and social distancing, and he said that the delta variant is making things worse than before.

“40 percent of Arkansans are fully vaccinated, maybe it’s close to 50 now. Half our state is not, so this is a big problem,” Amick said. 

Health experts predict Arkansans between the age of 35-59 will still be the most affected, but adults 18-34 and those who are 17 and younger will continue to catch the virus. 

“This is not like the original alpha variant which was more likely to go after older adults and those with underlying health issues,” Amick said.

The main message Amick said to take from these projections is to get vaccinated.

“Get vaccinated, that’s the single most important thing right? If you’re not vaccinated, you’re the person that’s at risk right now,” Amick said. “For whom there still is not a vaccine, then you really have to just think about making sure they understand the importance of wearing a mask, washing their hands.”

Amick also said this is a virus no one wants to get, so when thinking about vaccines, you get vaccinated and can help protect those kids who can’t.