As our state deals with the spread of covid-19 in the midst of a global outbreak, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette will publish five things you need to know each week. We’ll be publishing these round-ups in English, Spanish and Marshallese. You can read our full coverage at arkansasonline.com/coronavirus/. Coronavirus coverage pertaining to crucial public health information will be available for all readers.
• Arkansas has confirmed 47,028 total cases of covid-19 since the pandemic began, according to data posted in the morning, Aug. 7. State health officials also have reported 515 total deaths and 39,555 recoveries.
• State health officials on Aug. 6 encouraged Arkansans to get their flu vaccinations in order to avoid the possibility of getting the flu and covid-19 at the same time and to keep from overwhelming hospitals. Flu vaccinations will be available through the Arkansas Department of Health at drive-through locations and schools next month.
• Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Aug. 5 that K-12 schools would be required to have in-person instruction five days per week. This meant districts like Fayetteville and North Little Rock that had planned on split schedules or fewer days on-campus for students had to change plans.
• High school football teams began practicing with helmets Aug. 3. Hutchinson said July 31 that sports teams including football, volleyball and cheerleading, would be allowed to play in the fall.
• A report from the White House coronavirus task force, dated Aug. 2, listed Arkansas as having 37 counties that are in the “red zone” based on their number of new cases the previous week and the percentage of tests that were positive. That was up from 32 counties. Hutchinson urged Arkansans to keep wearing masks and stay six feet apart from people outside their households when possible.