By Ray King

Reported cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas which last week were in excess of 700 per day have declined for the past three days, Governor Asa Hutchinson said Monday.

There are currently 20,257 cumulative cases of COVID-19, that’s 439 more than were reported on Sunday. Of those 20,257, a total of 5,926 are active cases and another 14,066 people have recovered.

Hutchinson said 300 people are currently hospitalized and there have been 265 deaths.

As it has been for most of last week, Washington County reported the highest number of cases with 93, followed by Pulaski County with 56, Benton County with 48, Sevier County with 31 and Sebastian County with 22. The remaining 50 counties in the state had less than 20 cases reported.

State Health Officer Dr. Nate Smith said 21 of the new cases were in correctional facilities and the rest in community settings.

Northwest Arkansas, particularly Washington and Benton Counties have had the largest number of cases of any counties for more than a week and Smith said the State Health Department has paid particular attention to those counties. Asked about Pulaski County, he said that because Pulaski County and Central Arkansas are the most densely populated areas of the state, health officials “need to be very vigilant, especially with the 4th of July coming up.”