Friday: Salons to reopen Wednesday, May 6; ADH now reports 1,284 active cases after change to categorization

Governor Asa Hutchinson announced on Friday that hair salons, barber shops, beauty schools, tattoo shops, massage therapy businesses and medical spas would reopen beginning Wednesday, May 6. Several restrictions will apply – see below for more.

Another major announcement Friday afternoon was that the number of active cases has dropped by several hundred after a change to the way recoveries were categorized. Now, 1,284 active cases are being reported in Arkansas, compared to 1,881 the day before.

1:30 PM

Cumulative Confirmed Cases: 3,321

Deaths: 64

Recovered: 1,973

Total Active Cases: 1,284

Total Tested: 49,676

Source: ADH Website, Governor’s press conference

Not all of the cases from Forrest City have been entered into the database. 95 hospitalized. 23 on a ventilator. Three new deaths today, one of which was a nursing home related death; 229 nursing home residents confirmed positive; A recategorization of those who have recovered

5 PM

NEA County Numbers:

  • Randolph County: 17 positive, 14 recoveries, 505 negative
  • Clay County: 3 positive, 0 recoveries, 245 negative
  • Cleburne County: 73 positive, 67 recoveries, 162 negative, 4 deaths
  • Craighead County: 74 positive, 46 recoveries, 1,006 negative, 0 death
  • Crittenden County: 188 positive, 142 recoveries, 1,051 negative, 5 deaths
  • Fulton County: 1 positive, 0 recoveries, 86 negative
  • Greene County: 16 positive, 10 recoveries, 676 negative
  • Independence County: 10 positive, 9 recoveries, 180 negative
  • Jackson County: 1 positive, 1 recoveries, 78 negative
  • Lawrence County: 59 positive, 27 recoveries, 262 negative, 2 deaths
  • Mississippi County: 20 positive, 8 recoveries, 182 negative
  • Poinsett County: 23 positive, 10 recoveries, 118 negatives, 2 deaths
  • Sharp County: 9 positives, 3 recoveries, 59 negative
  • Don’t see your county? Click here to find it on ADH’s map.

5 PM

United States: 1,098,565 positive

64,577 have died.

Global: 3,334,416 positive

237,943 have died.

Source: Johns Hopkins University.

Tracking the Growth

The latest numbers have been added to graphics by our friend Dr. Pat Carroll, who is helping us track new cases and active cases by date.

Updated at 4:30 PM Friday by Dr. Pat Carroll
Updated at 4:30 PM Friday by Dr. Pat Carroll

Salons, barber shops, tattoo shops to reopen Wednesday, May 6

Barbershops, hair salons, beauty schools, tattoo shops, massage therapy, and medical spa services will begin reopening on Wednesday, May 6.

  • 10 or fewer people in the facility
  • 30-percent of stations in operations or less
  • No walk-ins
  • Clients must wait outside until ready
  • Time between appointments for cleaning
  • 6-feet between clients
  • Recording all client information (for contact tracing)
  • Vulnerable populations should stay home



St. Bernards Receives Grant for COVID-19 Care, Testing

JONESBORO (May 1, 2020) – St. Bernards has received a grant in excess of $125,000 to expand its healthcare capabilities fighting COVID-19 in northeast Arkansas.

The grant, administered by the Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas to the St. Bernards Development Foundation, will help fund the conversion of emergency department treatment rooms into “negative-pressure” rooms for improved infection control and respiratory treatment at St. Bernards Five Rivers in Pocahontas, Lawrence Memorial Hospital in Walnut Ridge and CrossRidge Community Hospital in Wynne. Funds will also help St. Bernards purchase testing equipment for faster diagnosis and treatment of patients who have COVID-19 symptoms.

St. Bernards Senior Vice President of Administrative Services Kevin Hodges said that northeast Arkansas has desperately needed these types of services.

“Our capabilities at St. Bernards will improve greatly with these additions,” Hodges said, “especially to help those most impacted by COVID-19.”

Hodges described the funds, totaling $126,705, as much-needed assistance.

“COVID-19 has not only placed a significant strain on our healthcare system’s capabilities, it has also strained us economically,” he said. “We are grateful the Blue & You Foundation recognized the challenges facing healthcare providers across our state as they battle this virus.”

The Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas will provide up to $1.7 million to Arkansas organizations working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 or helping communities deal with its effects. More information is found at


Gyms to resume operations May 4 – with restrictions

Thursday afternoon, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced gyms would begin reopening on May 4 (Monday). However, numerous restrictions and safety measures must be taken by the fitness locations. Face coverings must be worn by all – except when actively exercising. No pools, spas, showers, or saunas will be allowed.



Places of worship, larger congregations to learn their fate

On Monday, May 4, expect an announcement regarding places of worship and larger congregations of gathering size.

Restaurants to begin limited dine-in service starting May 11

Restaurants will be opened for limited dine-in service beginning on May 11, Governor Hutchinson announced on Wednesday.

In phase one, the governor said capacity will be limited to about 30% of restaurant’s normal limit. Strict social distancing guidelines will be enforced. Bars must still be closed at restaurants – for patrons – but can still serve drinks (just no congregating at the bar).


Phase three, which is down the road, will be when normal operations resume.

Dental procedures planned to resume on May 18

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson announced Friday that dental procedures are planned to resume on May 18. He called it a goal and said it could change but indicated plans were, as of now, for business to begin resuming in that field on May 18.

Arkansas State Parks to reopen

As of today, camping for instate resident RVs will be opening. Contactless check-in/check-out will be in effect. Campground bath houses will not be reopened.

As of May 15, park restaurants, museums, exhibits, retail, marinas and rental equipment will be open to a limited capacity with social distancing enforced.

Also as of May 15, cabins, lodges, and Rent-A-RV will be resuming with reservations limited to Friday through Monday for in-state residents only.

Jonesboro curfew lifted tonight

Mayor Harold Perrin announced Tuesday evening the next steps for Jonesboro to return to normal business and that included releasing the city from curfew tonight. The curfew, which has been from 10 PM to 6 AM, has been loosely enforced and was enacted primarily to prevent large gatherings at night, city officials said.

State Police re-opening skills testing to driver license applicants

The Arkansas State Police plans to restore skills testing for driver license applicants next week. The tests will be limited to applicants who use the state police web site for scheduling a skills test and receive confirmation of the test date and time. Additionally, the tests will only be offered at twelve locations across Arkansas.

The web site scheduler for skills tests will be opened to applicants on Monday, May 4th. Applicants should be prepared to choose one of the twelve sites where the skills tests will be offered. The scheduler tool can be accessed at

On March 18th the Arkansas State Police implemented precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus with temporary and limited adjustments in Class D driver license testing procedures. As the virus threat begins to diminish, the locations for license testing will be limited since many of the city and county facilities used by the state police remain closed to public access.

The continuing COVID-19 pandemic will require Class D skills test applicants to remain inside their vehicle at the open testing sites until a testing agent approaches the vehicle with further instructions.

Effective next Monday anyone at a state police facility for purposes of being administered any form of a driver license test (Class D written or skills and commercial driver license) will be required to wear an appropriate face mask covering both the mouth and nose, pass a health assessment survey, and be willing to submit to a body temperature scan. Social distancing practices will be mandatory at all testing sites. The new precautionary measures were developed in conjunction with the Arkansas Department of Health.

Additional information and pre-requisites for driver license testing can be found at

11:15 AM

Sudden vanishing of sports to cost economy at least $12 billion, say analysts

Hundreds of thousands of jobs and at least $12 billion in revenue will vanish thanks to the coronavirus pandemic shutting the world down during much of the first half of 2020. However, that number could more than double if college football and the NFL schedules are affected this fall. Read more from ESPN.

This story will be updated throughout the day on Thursday, April 30, with coronavirus related headlines. Check back and refresh for the latest numbers. 

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