2 more die from virus in Carroll County
By Scott Loftis
The number of confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Carroll County rose sharply again in the past week, according to data from the Arkansas Department of Health, and two more county residents died from the virus.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the ADH website said there had been 848 confirmed cases of the virus in the county, with 22 probable cases. That represents an increase of 91 confirmed cases — a 12 percent hike — and eight probable cases over the past seven days.
In a two-week span since Tuesday, Sept. 29, the county has seen 168 new confirmed cases and 15 new probable cases. The ADH says there are 126 active confirmed cases and eight active probable cases in the county — an increase of 69.6 percent in the past two weeks.
Twelve Carroll County residents have died from the virus, according to the health department.
Speaking at his weekly COVID update on Tuesday, Gov. Asa Hutchinson displayed a color-coded map of the state’s 75 counties, with colors corresponding to each county’s rate of positive tests over the past two weeks. Carroll County was shown in dark red, indicating that at least 13 percent of the county’s tests over the past two weeks have been positive.
“It really is a lesson that if you’re in the rural parts of the state, sometimes you think ‘well, we’re not going to be touched by it,’ ” Hutchinson said. “But as someone mentioned today, people move in and out … they’ll work outside the county, they’ll come back or they’ll go visit somebody and they’ll come back, and so you have to be careful and mindful and socially distance to protect yourself.”
The ADH said in a report released Monday, Oct. 12, that there had been a cumulative total of 55 cases at Berryville schools, with 42 among students and 13 among staff. The report said there were six active cases. The same report indicated a cumulative total of 46 cases in Green Forest schools — 37 involving students and nine among staff. The report said there was a total of six active cases. The health department report lists only educational institutions with five or more active cases. Eureka Springs was not listed on the Oct. 8 report.
The increasing local numbers mirror a similar trend statewide as the state’s cumulative case count has now topped 93,000. On Tuesday afternoon, the ADH reported a total of 88,870 confirmed cases with an additional 4,617 probable cases. Confirmed cases are identified through polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing, while probable cases are identified through less sensitive antigen testing.
The state’s confirmed virus deaths increased by 142 over the past week, with the ADH reporting 1,463 confirmed deaths as of Tuesday afternoon. Another 148 probable deaths were reported, unchanged from a week earlier.
Hospitalizations from the virus in Arkansas reached record levels six times in a seven-day span, with a new high of 608 on Monday. By Tuesday afternoon, that number had dropped by three to 605.