LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas on Friday reported a new daily record for confirmed coronavirus cases, surpassing the one-day record increase set a week ago.
The Department of Health reported 1,107 people tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19, bringing the state’s total confirmed cases since the pandemic began to 67,911. The state reported an additional 78 people were positive through antigen testing.
The increase comes after four straight days of less than 400 new cases. Gov. Asa Hutchinson said he’s not considering new restrictions, but said the state may look at action in other areas such as contact tracing if it continues seeing multiple days of cases exceeding 1,000.
“You don’t want to take action broadly in terms of restrictions and businesses if they’re not related to an increase in cases,” Hutchinson said.
Colleges and universities remained a major driver of the state’s increase, with 13% of the new cases coming from campuses. The state on Thursday said there are nearly 1,300 active cases at its colleges and universities.
The vast majority of those cases come from the University of Arkansas, which reported 128 new cases on its main campus in Fayetteville on Friday. The school has 722 active cases. Arkansas State University in Jonesboro said it has 187 active cases. The outbreak at UA prompted the school last week to take steps to restrict activities on campus and off-campus parties.
The actual number of cases in Arkansas is likely higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.
Thirteen more people died from COVID-19, bringing the state’s total fatalities to 953. The state’s hospitalizations remained at 392.
Friday’s increase in confirmed cases was the biggest since the state reported 1,094 new cases a week ago.
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