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One new local COVID case; local nursing homes clear of virus

by Caitlan Butler | February 22, 2021 at 7:30 p.m.

Only one new COVID-19 case was reported in Union County on Monday by the Arkansas Department of Health, bringing the cumulative total of cases identified locally to 3,613.

The new case reported in Union County was a confirmed case, of which 2,794 have been identified locally; 819 probable cases have been identified. The United States Centers for Disease Control considers positive results from PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests to be confirmed cases and positive results from antigen (rapid) tests to be probable cases.

Active cases continued to fall Monday, dropping by 11 to reach 49; they represented 1.4% of all the cases identified locally and included 37 confirmed cases and 12 probable cases. There were 3,462 Union County residents considered recovered from the virus Monday, up 12 from Sunday.

Reports on COVID cases in nursing homes and educational institutions produced by the ADH on Monday did not include any in Union County, nor did a report on cases in workplaces.

No new local deaths resulting from COVID-19 were reported on Monday. There have been 102 deaths attributable to the virus recorded in Union County. There were 100 people hospitalized Monday in the Southwest hospital region of the state, where Union County is located, including 28 in intensive care units and 14 on ventilator support.

Scott Street, CEO of the Medical Center of South Arkansas, said Monday during a meeting of the El Dorado Rotary Club that until recently, MCSA’s 20-bed COVID unit has stayed pretty full.

“Looking at the last few months, it has only just recently slowed down,” he said. “We have often, just in the last few weeks, been maxed out. This last week and a half the spread has reduced, our volumes have dropped. … It is a relief that we’ve seen a drop. We have a lot of true champions and heroes here at the hospital.”

The hospital had about 11 COVID-positive patients Monday afternoon, Street said.

The ADH reported six new negative COVID-19 results returned from Union County Monday. In all, 29,200 COVID-19 test results have returned from Union County, including 25,587 negatives, indicating an overall local positivity rate of 12.4%.

Arkansas added 245 new COVID-19 cases Monday to its cumulative total, which reached 315,759. The cases in the state included 249,847 confirmed cases, up 195 from Sunday, and 65,912 probable cases, up 50 from Sunday.

Active cases dropped further Monday, falling by 771 to reach 4,899; they represented 1.6% of all the cases identified in the state and included 3,378 confirmed cases and 1,521 probable cases. There were 305,470 Arkansans considered recovered from the virus Monday, up 1,010 from Sunday.

The deaths of six Arkansans that resulted from COVID-19 were reported Monday, bringing the state’s death toll to 5,363, indicating a state COVID mortality rate of 1.7%. There were 588 Arkansans hospitalized Monday due the virus, including 225 in ICUs and 109 on ventilator support.

The ADH reported 2,461 new COVID-19 test results returned Monday 204,876 returned so far this month. Since the state began testing for the virus, 3,034,358 results have returned to the ADH, including 2,707,141 negatives, indicating an overall positivity rate for the state of 10.4%.

As of Monday afternoon, 519,240 doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID vaccines have been administered in Arkansas, according to the ADH.

Johns Hopkins University reported 28,181,128 COVID-19 cases in the United States Monday at 4:45 p.m. Data wasn’t available then on the number of U.S. residents considered recovered from the virus or the number of active cases in the country. Over 500,000 U.S. residents have died as a result of the virus as of Monday; Johns Hopkins reported 500,159 U.S. deaths attributable to the virus Monday afternoon, indicating a national COVID mortality rate of 1.8%.

Johns Hopkins reported 111,652,732 COVID-19 cases worldwide Monday afternoon. There were 62,960,659 people considered recovered from the virus then, leaving 46,220,032 cases — 41.4% — active around the world. There had been 2,472,041 deaths attributable to the virus reported by Monday afternoon, indicating a global COVID mortality rate of 2.2%.

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