LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Tuesday, UAMS health released their latest forecast on COVID-19 on their website.
According to the UAMS’s COVID forecast report, from Friday, August 14, the College of Public Health faculty conducted three types of assessments for this bi-monthly report:
- The short-term forecasts of confirmed cases, deaths, and hospitalizations
- Mid-term forecasts of COVID-19 cases and deaths
- Assessments of the impact of COVID-19 among Arkansas counties by race/ethnicity, and by age
According to the report, all forecasts, prjections, and assessments were developed using COVID-19 data from the Arkansas Department of Health through August 9.
UAMS has predicted the continued rise in the number of daily confirmed cases, hospitalizations, and deaths due to COVID. They are forcasting Arkansans will have about 58,000 cases by August 24. They do say the prediction is flattening, and there may be a decrease in the number of daily cases over the next two weeks.
The short-term model says there will be:
- 4,159 cumulative hospitalizations
- 1,447 patients needing intensive care
- 713 cumulative deaths
- These numbers are predicted for August 24.
The report in their mid-term projections indicates, if nothing changes, the state will have almost 100,000 cumulative COVID-19 cases and 1,116 deaths by September 30. UAMS says if face masks are worn by large numbers of Arkansans, the number of daily new infections will be almost 4,000 fewer per day, compared to if masks are not worn consistently. The simulations also say the number of daily infections will be significantly lower if schools open with online classes only.
The report indicates that daily new infections are expected to be higher if schools open with hybrid, in-person and online classes, or in-person classes only.
UAMS has predicted with long-term projections, taking more Arkansas data into account that the peak will be in mid-December at just over 90,000 active cases. After peaking, the virus will begin a slow, downward trend during the first months of 2021.
According to the UAMS report, Logan, Poinsett and Fulton’s counties have had the greatest growth in the last two weeks relative to the two weeks prior, because of the increase in these counties’ caseloads are recent, they may present an opportunity to effectively control the virus in the counties with increased testing and contact tracing resources.
UAMS says COVID-19 continues to have a disproportionate impact on Black and Hispanic Arkansans. The impact is apparent for hospitalizations, intensive care admissions, and deaths.
In the report, UAMS says the number of new daily cases has increased in all age groups over time and the models used to forecast cases by age predict that cases will continue to increase in all age groups in the next two weeks. The model according to UAMS shows Arkansans between the ages of 35 and 60 to have the highest number of cases in the state, followed by young adults 20 to 34 and children under the age of 19. Arkansans over 75 have the fewest number of cases. In the report, they say the number of daily hospitalizations will continue to increase in all age groups during the next two weeks. The greatest number of hospitalizations will be in adults 35 to 59, followed by adults 60 to 74 and over 75. Children younger than the age of 19 will continue to have the fewest number of hospitalizations.
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