June 4 marks the second highest peak of new COVID-19 cases in the state of Arkansas. Gov. Asa Hutchinson reported 358 new cases, with only two in correctional facilities, bringing the total number of statewide cases to 8,425.
There are 2,355 active cases with 2,217 in the community, 95 in nursing homes and 43 in correctional facilities. To date, 5,919 are considered to be recovered, up 202 from yesterday.
The number of hospitalizations declined by one to 137 with 32 patients on a ventilator. The number of deaths related to COVID-19 has increased by nine to 151.
In terms of testing, there were 4,350 COVID-19 tests conducted across the state yesterday and had a 5.2 percent positivity rate. The state has completed 12,199 tests since June 1.
“Here, we have been fairly consistent with our new level of testing that it is in the five to seven percent range, today it was a little bit over five, sometimes it drops down under five,” Hutchinson said. “I like our positivity rate, and that’s something that should be encouraging to us as we test more and more, our positivity rate is staying fairly consistent there.”
The World Health Organization previously set a 10 percent or lower positivity rate benchmark for COVID-19 tests.
Secretary of Health Dr. Nate Smith noted that the increase in new cases is primarily coming from Northwest Arkansas. Washington County has 111 new cases and Benton County has 92 new cases. Pulaski County followed behind with 34 new cases. There are 12 new cases in Crittenden County and 10 in Sevier County.
Smith noted that approximately half of the new cases have Spanish surnames, so the state “will be doing a more detailed analysis of our active cases for tomorrow [June 5].” He also said that he will have a breakdown of the demographics tomorrow for the deaths related to COVID-19 in the state.