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Arkansas estimated to have 40,000 total coronavirus cases by August, researchers say

Research out of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences estimates that the state could see a total of 40,000 COVID-19 cases by the beginning of August.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Research out of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences estimates that the state could see a total of 40,000 COVID-19 cases by August 1, while also pointing out that data from the department of health shows that Black and Hispanic Arkansans are disproportionally impacted by the virus.

"[The] models are forecasting Arkansas will have 40,000 cases by August 1st. We should expect the recent increases to continue for at least the next two weeks," the report summary says.

The researchers also say they predict there will be increases not just in cases, but also in hospitalizations and deaths.

According to the models, those who are Black in Arkansas and test positive for COVID-19 have three times as many hospitalizations as White people. 

Hispanics, the study shows, have nearly four times time the rate of hospitalizations as Whites.

Other highlights from the models:

  • The models projecting COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths through late 2020 to early 2021 indicate Arkansas will have approximately 100,000 cases at the peak of the epidemic in mid to late November
  • These numbers are supported on the idea that social distancing guidelines such as wearing masks are not widely followed in the state
  • Testing and contact tracing resources should be targeting counties with recent spikes in new cases 
  • In order to control these cases, particular importance should be providing testing that can be processed and reported within 24 hours to enhance effective contact tracing.
  • Covid-19 continues to have a disproportionate impact on Black and Latino Arkansans. The disproportionate impact is apparent for hospitalizations, intensive care cases, and cases requiring ventilation.

To read the full study for more context on these estimates, click here.

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