UAMS predicts 50,000 new COVID-19 cases by December

Coronavirus

"If we are having this many people die in six weeks as we have had for eight months, it demonstrates the speed and consequences of COVID-19."

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — New UAMS models suggest the pandemic in the Natural State is going to get worse before it gets better.

The models indicate Arkansas will continue to see increasing numbers of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths due to the coronavirus within just the next three days.

UAMS College of Public Health Dean Mark Williams said in the short-term models, by November 1, there will be more than 111,000 confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases.

The mid-term models show the state will report 50,000 more cases by the middle of December.

Williams said it’s safe to say these projections are under forecasted rather than over.

“The current trends are indicating that we are on a very steep slope right now and there is no indication that [the] slope is going to slow down anytime soon, and in fact, every indication that we have in the models is that slope will probably be increasing,” Williams said.

He said these models have been pretty spot on, which makes him fearful of what lies ahead for Arkansas, especially if we continue down this path.

This time, it is serious. We don’t have a lot of leeways to try and convenience people to do the right thing, they simply have to start doing the right thing or we are going to be in trouble.

MARK WILLIAMS, UAMS COLLEGE OF PUBLIC HEALTH DEAN
COURTESY OF UAMS

Williams said there’s a big fear surrounding Thanksgiving, as people of mixed ages, will more than likely be gathering in large groups.

He said he wants to stress the importance of social distancing, wearing your masks, and staying vigilant.

According to Williams, the peak is now projected for April, which means Arkansans have a long way to go.

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