State is seeing an unexpected COVID trend

Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 6:18 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - It was unexpected surprise to many in the health care field.

Following the holiday weekend, they are seeing COVID numbers trending in the right direction.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson recently mentioned that COVID trends are going down across the state.

A local hospital official said this may be a small light in the tunnel.

With gatherings and the Labor Day holiday, hospitals across the state prepared for a surge of COVID cases and hospitalizations.

“Anytime you see a three-day weekend, you think there may be a spike here where there is large gatherings, football season. We didn’t see the spike we expected,” said Ty Jones, Director of marketing for NEA Baptist.

But, that did not happen.

A-State is also seeing a downward trend of COVID isolations.

“We are like many of our fellow institutions in the state. We are seeing that same trend along with the state,” said Bill Smith, chief communications officer for the university.

This time last year, the campus saw 187 COVID isolations. This year after the holiday, they were at 28.

“We’ve seen that impact after Memorial Day, after the holiday’s last winter and I think that, perhaps, what we are seeing is a collective sense of understanding,” Smith said.

The positivity rate at NEA Baptist gives their health care workers a little hope.

In a week, the rate dropped from about 20% to a little under 19%.

“They know that that relief may be coming but right now we got the length of stay issue. A lot of these COVID patients are a longer length of stay than you would typically see in one recovering from surgery,” said Jones.

Arkansas Department of Health Secretary Jose Romero said the Department of Health is carefully watching COVID numbers following the holiday.

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