LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas Department of Health reported 1,777 new cases of the coronavirus and 17,686 active cases on Wednesday, a drop from a week ago.

“There are over 700 fewer new cases and over 2,700 fewer active cases than this time last week,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said. “The steps we are taking to slow this virus appear to be having an effect,” according to Hutchinson.

The rolling average number of daily new coronavirus cases in Arkansas has decreased by about 34 percent over the past two weeks, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The number of people in Arkansas hospitalized with COVID-19 was at 1,029 on Wednesday, which is 66 fewer people than were hospitalized the day before, health officials said.

The state on Wednesday reported 52 additional deaths for totals of 288,964 reported cases and 4,742 deaths since the pandemic began.

On Tuesday, an Arkansas judge dismissed a lawsuit challenging an early closing time for bars and some restaurants that has been temporarily imposed because of the coronavirus pandemic. Hutchinson announced the order in November in response to a surge in coronavirus cases, and in December it was extended to Feb. 3.