LITTLE ROCK – According to the latest version of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), Arkansas is expected to hit the peak hospital resource use on April 24 and peak of deaths per day on April 27.
According to the latest projections, Arkansas is 18 days away from its peak use of hospital resources. The IHME projects Arkansas will need 500 hospital beds, 102 ICU beds and 86 invasive ventilators. No shortage of beds are projected in Arkansas.
The IHME projects a peak of 10 deaths per day between April 24 and April 30. A total of 297 COVID-19 deaths in Arkansas are projected by August 4.
Nationally, the IHME projects 81,766 deaths from the virus across the country. A peak of 3,130 deaths per day is projected on April 16. The previous version of the model projected 93,531 deaths.
The model still projects a national shortage of 36,654 hospital beds and 16,323 ICU beds.
The IHME is part of the University of Washington’s School of Medicine.
Dr. Christopher Murray, Director of the IHME, said the revised forecasts reflect “a massive infusion of new data.”
“As we obtain more data and more precise data, the forecasts we at IHME created have become more accurate,” Murray said. “And these projections are vital to health planners, policymakers, and anyone else associated with caring for those affected by and infected with the coronavirus.”
According to the IHME, projecting the epidemic in each state depends on predicting the peak. One week ago, the only place that had experienced a peak was Wuhan City. The group says the impact of social distancing is now much clearer, as seven European regions have seen a peak in daily deaths as well. Those seven locations are Madrid, Spain; Castile-La Mancha, Spain; Tuscany, Italy; Emilia-Romagna, Italy; Liguria, Italy; Piedmont, Italy; and Lombardy, Italy.
Murray, however, cautioned that, “As we noted previously, the trajectory of the pandemic will change – and dramatically for the worse – if people ease up on social distancing or relax with other precautions. Our projections are strengthened by the new downturns in more regions. This is evidence that social distancing is crucial. Our forecasts assume that social distancing remains in place until the end of May.”
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