State officials are increasing Arkansas’ COVID-19 testing goals for July.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced on Wednesday, June 24 that the state is aiming to perform 180,000 tests in July. This is an increase of 60,000 tests from the 120,000 goal set for June.
The 180,000 goal represents approximately 6 percent of the state’s population. Since first setting a testing goal of 80,000 tests in May, state officials have increased the testing goal by 2 percent (starting at 2 percent) each month.
Hutchinson referred to the testing effort as the state’s “radar system” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The testing goal was met in both May and June. As of Wednesday, 125,002 tests had been performed. Arkansas Department of Health Dr. Nate Smith said that, before the end of June, there would likely be around 140,000 completed tests.
“We’ve really scaled up our testing. I’m taking the governor’s 180,000 as a floor rather than as a ceiling. That’s critical for us to identify those chains of transmission so we can disrupt them,” Smith said.