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COVID-19 update: Infection curve rises for seventh straight day

by David Showers | November 20, 2021 at 4:03 a.m.
This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). - Image by CDC via The Associated Press

The infection curve rose for a seventh straight day Friday, the longest sustained increase since July when the curve was ascending to the non-winter peak it reached in mid-August.

The rolling seven-day average of new cases has risen nine out of the last 10 days, increasing 44% over that time. The average surpassed 600 Friday for the first time since Oct. 15. Active cases surpassed 6,000 for the first time since Oct. 17 and have risen 41% in the last 10 days.

Cases in Europe started rising weeks before the recent rise in some U.S. states. The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health said the European rise may be attributable to the delta-plus variant. The college said delta-plus binds to lung cells more efficiently than delta.

"Delta-plus has been detected throughout the U.S., including Arkansas, and it is unclear if it can replace delta as the dominant strain," the college said earlier this week in the report it released with its updated predictive model. "Nevertheless, delta-plus' greater transmissibility should give us pause as we prepare to gather for the holidays.

"Our celebrations are likely to be indoors, in poorly ventilated quarters, and in close contact with family and friends, some of whom may not be vaccinated. This presents an ideal condition for a virus that can easily bind to human lung cells."

As a service to our readers, The Sentinel-Record publishes updates released by the city of Hot Springs and the state of Arkansas.

The Arkansas Department of Health is no longer reporting confirmed and probable cases separately. The following stats were posted Friday on the Health Department's website:

• 523,192 cumulative cases, up 732 from Thursday.

• 618.43 rolling seven-day average of new cases, up 31 from Thursday.

• 4,187,633 PCR test reports, up 6,166 from Thursday.

• 9.2% cumulative PCR infection rate, no change from Thursday.

• 6,143 active cases, up 262 from Thursday.

• 1,805 active juvenile cases, up 97 from Thursday.

• 508,287 recoveries, up 460 from Thursday.

• 4,333,200 vaccine doses received, up 7,410 from Thursday.

• 3,325,647 doses given, up 11,524 from Thursday.

• 316 hospitalizations, up 12 from Thursday.

• 65 cases on ventilators, down four from Thursday.

• 130 ICU patients, up six from Thursday.

• 8,680 deaths, up nine from Thursday.

• 2,266 nursing home deaths, up two from Thursday.

• 16,132 cumulative cases, up eight from Thursday.

• 8.29 rolling seven-day average of new cases, no change from Thursday.

• 163,717 PCR and antigen test reports, up 305 from Thursday.

• 10.2% cumulative PCR infection rate, no change from Thursday.

• 94 active cases in Garland County, up four from Thursday.

• 15,640 recoveries in Garland County, up four from Thursday

• 398 deaths, no change from Thursday.

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