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These are featured stories of how the Upper Delta and Mid-South is combating the Coronavirus as well as resources to help those impacted by the pandemic.

New daily COVID-19 cases again rise above 1,000; two more legislators test positive

A researcher holds a tube containing the coronavirus.
A researcher holds a tube containing the coronavirus.

It was confirmed Wednesday that two more Arkansas Legislators – Sen. Missy Irvin, R-Mountain View, and Rep. Joe Cloud, R-Russellville – have tested positive for COVID.

With another double-digit rise in the number of known COVID-19 deaths and more than 1,100 new cases reported, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Wednesday (Oct. 21) there is no part of the state safe from the virus.

The Arkansas Department of Health reported Wednesday 1,155 new cases confirmed by PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests and antigen tests. The ADH report also reported 23 more deaths, bringing the cumulative tally to 1,599 for the tragic metric.

Gov. Hutchinson said the virus is widespread considering that 14 of the state’s 75 counties reported 20 or more new cases.

“We are testing at record levels and we continue to see a high number of new cases across Arkansas. Compared to last Wednesday, we are plus 76 cases. Today we have 14 counties with more than 20 cases, once again highlighting the fact that this virus is not contained to one part of the state,” Gov. Hutchinson said in a statement. “We must all remain focused in our fight against COVID-19. Let’s be careful of the social gatherings and remind each other that wearing a mask protects those around us. Today everyone understands the need for social distancing.”

It was also confirmed Wednesday that two more Arkansas Legislators – Sen. Missy Irvin, R-Mountain View, and Rep. Joe Cloud, R-Russellville – have tested positive for COVID. The Arkansas Senate and Arkansas House confirmed Tuesday that Reps. Michelle Gray, R-Melbourne, and Stu Smith, R-Batesville, and Sen. Terry Rice, R-Waldron, tested positive.

COVID REPORT – Oct. 21New known COVID-19 cases, active cases, tests
• 95,399 known cumulative PCR cases, with 874 new community cases and 107 cases in correctional facilities
• 6,197 “probable” cases, up from 6,023 on Tuesday
• There are 7,272 active cases, up from 7,159 on Tuesday
• There were 8,674 test results provided in the previous 24 hours.
• There were 1,368 antigen tests in the previous 24 hours with 247 positives.

Deaths
• 1,599, up 23
• 152 “probable” COVID-related deaths, unchanged

Hospitalizations
636, down 1

Ventilators
99, down 2

Recovered cases
86,520

The top five counties with new known cases reported Wednesday were: Pulaski (84), Craighead (53), Benton (44), Washington (42), and White (38). The counties accounted for 29.8% of the 874 new community cases.

As of Wednesday at 1 p.m., there were 8,294,695 U.S. cases and 221,460 deaths. Globally, there were 40,997,453 cases and 1,127,637 deaths.