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Arkansas Gov. confirms school COVID-19 cases and rental aid are being monitored

Published: Sep. 8, 2021 at 9:19 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 8, 2021 at 3:42 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KAIT) - Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Arkansas Department of Health Secretary Dr. Jose R. Romero will update the public at 1:30 p.m. on the state’s response to the coronavirus, including the latest cases of COVID-19 and deaths.

Rental Assistance in Arkansas

The governor began with an update on the rental assistance program in Arkansas.

The governor said he approved two changes to make the application process easier.

One of the changes prioritizes applicants who are about to be evicted. The other change would bypass the landlords who have not finished their applications to help out renters.

Governor Hutchinson added they increased staffing levels by adding 70 staff members to help the rent assistance program.

COVID-19 in Schools

Health officials say they continue to monitor the COVID-19 cases closely in schools across the state.

To put it in perspective, the state released a graph to explain the effects a mask policy has on the cases in schools.

The football game rivalry vaccination clinics will continue this week, none are in Region 8.

COVID-19 Beds

The governor explained the surge of COVID-19 hospitalizations keeps providing a challenge for hospitals in the state.

Here’s what is available in Arkansas:

  • 23 ICU beds
  • 2 pediatric ICU beds
  • 10 COVID ICU beds

He did share good news though, saying 27 new ICU beds will come online later this month to meet more needs.

He added a 20-person military team will help UAMS staffing needs, includes nurses and respiratory therapists.

Active cases are trending down in Arkansas, but we continue to have COVID-19 hospitalizations and COVID-19 deaths.

Most of those affected severely in Arkansas by the virus remains to be the unvaccinated population.

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