ARKANSAS COVID UPDATE — Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson held a press conference yesterday to give an update on how well his state has been dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. He had some sobering news as Covid-19 hospitalizations have shown a spike lately.
“This is the largest increase in hospitalizations since January. It is the largest increase in hospitalizations since we’ve had the vaccination available to prevent hospitalizations. And we have 55 added to the hospital rolls as a result of COVID-19,” Hutchinson said.
99% of Arkansas hospital intakes were unvaccinated patients and the dominant Covid-19 strain in that state is the new highly contagious Delta Variant. Hutchinson also explained that the average age of persons who are getting infected and hospitalized is getting younger.
"And so you see hospitalizations and deaths both are getting at a lower age because the higher age groups are getting vaccinated and they're protected and we've got a gap there that we need to work through," Hutchinson explained.
Hutchinson addressed vaccine hesitancy among Arkansans as it is among the states with the lowest percentage of people who have been fully vaccinated and said “community COVID conversations” will take place across the state to persuade more people to receive COVID-19 vaccinations as the disease tries to make a comeback in the state. The Republican Governor also called for businesses to give employees paid time off so they can get vaccinated.