Arkansas reported 485 new cases of coronavirus on Tuesday, its biggest jump in a day in more than three months.
The Department of Health said it was the largest increase in a day since the state reported 570 new cases on March 5th. The state has had 346,180 cases since the pandemic began last year.
The state’s active cases, i.e. those that do not include people who have died or recovered, have increased from 251 to 2,570. The COVID-19 death toll increased from eight to 5,884. Hospitalizations were increased from four to 285.
Arkansas in late March opened its vaccinations to everyone at least 16 years old and raised its state mask mandate, but the state had one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country.
Governor Asa Hutchinson cited the latest increase while urging more people to get vaccinated to stop the spread of the virus. About 41% of the state’s population has received at least one dose of the vaccine and about 33% have completed their vaccination, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
“As long as we increase the number of strokes, we will continue to increase the number of hospitalizations and new cases as we do today,” Hutchinson tweeted. “It’s sad to see someone go to the hospital or die when they can be prevented.”