By Ray King

The number of reported cases of COVID-19 in Arkansas doubled in just over a month, going from 25,000 on July 8 to 50,000 on Aug. 10 and while Governor Asa Hutchinson said Monday that while- progress is being made in slowing the virus, more work needs to be done.

Speaking at his daily COVID-19 update, Hutchinson said that a projection by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) predicted that the state would have 55,000 cases of COVID-19 by Aug. 10.

Hutchinson said it is important to follow the guidelines of the Department of Health which include social distancing, wearing a mask and avoiding crowds.

“If we go up by 1,000, 1,100 a day we might have to put in more restrictive measures and we don’t want to do that,” he said

After recording more than 1,000 new cases of COVID-19 last Friday, the numbers dropped to 772 on Saturday, 570 on Sunday and 645 Monday, bringing the state’s cumulative total to 50,028.

Secretary of Health Dr. Jose Romero said 7,343 of those cases are active with 52 in nursing homes, 886 in correctional facilities and the remaining 6,450 in community settings. A total of 42,139 people have recovered.

Hutchinson said Pulaski County had the highest number of cases of any county in the state with 61, followed by Sebastian County with 52, Garland County with 50, Saline County with 43, Jefferson County with 40, Craighead County with 32, Benton County with 21 and Independence County with 20.

There are currently 508 people hospitalized as a result of COVID-19. That’s six fewer than on Sunday and 11 additional deaths were reported, raising the state total to 555.