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Number of Arkansas' covid patients on ventilators falls to new 10-month low

by Tess Vrbin | March 26, 2022 at 5:05 p.m.
A ventilator is shown next to a hospital's intensive care bed set up for covid-19 patients in this Aug. 17, 2021, file photo. (AP/Rogelio V. Solis)

The number of covid-19 patients on ventilators in Arkansas hospitals fell Saturday to its lowest level since May 15, 2021, according to data from the Arkansas Department of Health.

Hospitals have seen steadily fewer covid-19 patients in general in the weeks since the omicron surge of the coronavirus ebbed in January, and some hospital numbers have fallen to levels not seen since the early days of the pandemic in 2020.

The Health Department reported 122 hospitalized covid patients on Saturday, nine fewer than Friday. It marked the third day this week in which the number of hospitalized covid patients was less than the 2021 one-day low of 141 covid-19 patients.

Two fewer patients were in intensive care on Saturday, for a total of 41, according to Health Department data. That's a new low for this year.

Meanwhile, currently infectious cases of covid-19 trended back downward after Friday's slight increase. The Health Department recorded 1,427 active cases Saturday, 18 fewer than Friday and just above the 2022 low of 1,425.

Saturday's 121 newly recorded covid cases raised Arkansas' total count of cases to 832,515 in just over two years. Of those, 819,643 are considered recovered.

The 1,325 covid-19 vaccine doses administered Saturday were 354 more than were administered Friday, but 581 fewer than a week earlier, in keeping with the ongoing decrease in demand for shots.

Of the shots given in the 24-hour period ending Saturday, 42.3% were boosters, according to Health Department data.

The Health Department recorded six new deaths of covid-19 Saturday, raising the two-year total to 11,209.

More details in Sunday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

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