Hutchinson backs off lifting virus limits by region as new hospitalizations hit record high


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas’ governor is backing off the possibility of allowing just some parts of the state to lift coronavirus restrictions after the state hit a new record (171) for people hospitalized from the virus.

It’s not clear when Gov. Asa Hutchinson will allow “Phase 2,” but he told reporters Monday that he’s not considering loosening restrictions by region, an idea he floated last week.

Arkansas in recent weeks has allowed businesses that closed because of the virus to reopen, but with limits on capacity and other safety restrictions.

The Department of Health on Monday said at least 9,740 people have tested positive for the virus.

At Monday’s statewide COVID-19 briefing, officials reported 314 new cases, bringing the total of positive cases to 9,740. There have been 155 deaths.

For a county-by-county list of current COVID-19 statistics, click here.

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