Quick update on Governor’s news conference 03/24/2020
We are sorry to report we have had had 2 deaths related to the COVID-19 virus. I am sending my thoughts and prayers for these families during this difficult time.
218 cases, 11 – (0-18), 134 – (19-64) and 73 – (65 and above). 14 currently in hospital, 6 on ventilators, 10 recovered and 2 deaths. 38 positives in long term facilities. 3 new counties reporting positives.
UAMS testing now online and will be increasing testing capability.
People that smoke appear to have bigger issue with this type of virus. This would be a good time to become the healthiest version of yourself you can be. Stopping smoking will help you not only with this virus but in your general health. You can use Be Well Arkansas to help you. https://www.bewellarkansas.org/quit-tobacco/
During this challenging time we must think about how to handle funeral services for family and friends. Dr. Smith ask that instead of a large memorial services we have smaller family gatherings, perhaps outside. Then plan the large memorial service at a later date. He says this would help reduce the risk to others as well as the Funeral Directors and employees of the funeral homes. I know this a hard decision each family must make and I know you make the right decision.
PPE – 24 pallets of supplies arrived from the National Strategic Stockpile this morning. That is 27,800 N95 mask. In addition the State has placed an order for 1 million units. Expecting some of that order here this weekend. With these combined orders we should have enough product to meet our needs for 60 days based on current usage. If demands goes up then supply will not last as long. They will continue to monitor PPE needs.
Special Session will be Thursday. It is important for General Assembly to meet so we can take care of the essential needs of the State due to this health emergency.
Why no Shelter in Place Order. The Governor said when he has spoken to other Governors and looked at the locations with Shelter in Place Order there is a lot of essential businesses still operating. The definition of essential business is very broad. He feels the best way for Arkansas to proceed is to that the approach we are doing. Instead of broad closures of business they will look at the type of business it is. How much person to person contact do they have will be used to help determine what need types of businesses need to close.
Social Distancing now more than important than ever. Especially for our young Arkansans. We know you love your friends and family but for their safety and yours we must limit our gatherings. If we do this we can get through this quicker and be able to get back to our regular lives.
We must remember during this time of Social Distancing that we still check on those in our communities that need help. The elderly and those who can’t drive or get out of their homes. We need to be good neighbors and assist those who can’t help themselves. We still do this while practicing Social Distancing.