Governor: Partnership will speed up testing process

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson was joined by members of his cabinet to update citizens on the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic on Wednesday.

Listen to the address in full here:

Arkansas reports 385 new coronavirus cases, 11 more deaths

LITTLE ROCK (AP) — Arkansas on Wednesday reported 385 more confirmed cases of the coronavirus as a White House task force said the state had one of the highest rates for new cases in the country.

The Health Department reported the state’s total cases since the pandemic began in March is 66,406. The department also reported an additional 114 positive antigen tests.

The number of people who have died from COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus, rose by 11 to 928. The number of people hospitalized rose by two to 411.

The White House Coronavirus Task Force said the state had the 6th highest rate for new cases last week and the 13th highest rate of positive tests. The panel repeated its recommendation that Arkansas close bars and issued several recommendations targeting university campuses.

Health officials have said the biggest growth in new cases is coming from college-age people.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson also announced a partnership between the Department of Health and Baptist Health that he said will increase the state’s testing capacity by 20%.