Governor Hutchinson showed on Tuesday, the state is continuing to increase with positive tests and warned that a “newer peak, or a higher peak,” could be on the way.
“We’re at a critical point in our journey,” said Hutchinson. “The direction we go from here totally depends on the commitment of Arkansans to continue social distancing and following guidelines.”
Hutchinson went on to say, “For Arkansas to get to Phase 2, we must continue to follow the guidelines.”
The “swim party,” in Paragould last week was also pointed out in the press conference Tuesday.
The Governor and Dr. Smith didn’t go into specifics, but they did say someone did test positive after going to that party.
As for the 119 deaths as of Tuesday, Dr. Smith said 19% of the deaths have come from Northeast Arkansas.
Dr. Smith said, “Why are we worried about a disease where 99% of the people recover? Because of that 1% of the population that will die. If you applied that to the population of Arkansas, that is 30,000 deaths. That’s not acceptable.”
The state set a goal of doing 60,000 COVID tests in the month of May. On Tuesday, over the weekend the state surpassed 61K tests for the month according to Hutchinson.
Hutchinson announced Tuesday that Dr. Nate Smith of the Arkansas Department of Health will be leaving the state for a job at the CDC in Atlanta, GA. Smith is expected to stay at the helm of the ADH until August 28. Dr. Jose Romero will serve as the interim ADH Sec. of Health.