State officials provided new information on COVID-19 cases among children in Arkansas. As the start date to school approaches on August 24, there has been a concern around the risk of them contracting the virus.
The 10 to 18 age group has the largest number of new COVID-19 cases compared to the 0 to 5 age group or 6 to 9 age group. However, all have been relatively declining since the beginning of August.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson pointed out that there were nearly 60 new cases among children ages 10 to 18 in early July who either caught the virus by engaging in community activities or being in close contact with an infected individual.
“As you move into August, you see a decline in the new cases among that age group as well as in the lower age group, not a significant decline, but some decline,” he said, later adding that it “will continue to decline if we wear our masks [and] we socially distance but at the same time we are going to have some cases just as we have cases if we don’t have school.”
Secretary of Health Dr. Jose Romero said the percent positivity among children in all age groups is also going down. However, cases “will probably not completely disappear.”
“There are cases now in the community, there will be cases in the community, there will be cases in school in the coming months [and] weeks,” he said. “But we are prepared for that. We have a plan to investigate those patients that could have symptoms and to do contact tracing.”