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Hutchinson encourages high school students to get vaccinated

April 12, 2021 GMT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Monday encouraged high school students to get vaccinated for COVID-19.

“Our vaccine numbers are increasing, but we must do more,” Hutchinson said in a news release. “If you are 16 and older then you are eligible for the vaccine. It is important that our eligible high school students get a dose.”

Hutchinson, a Republican, announced in March that everyone in Arkansas who is 16 or older would be eligible to be vaccinated.

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Over 31% of the people in Arkansas have gotten at least one dose of a coronavirus shot, while 19% are fully vaccinated, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Arkansas Department of Health on Monday reported 69 new confirmed and probable cases.

Over the past two weeks, the rolling average number of daily new cases in Arkansas has decreased by 25, a decrease of 13.7%, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

State health officials said Monday that 156 people with COVID-19 were hospitalized, which is seven fewer than the day before.

There were four additional deaths reported, bringing the state’s death toll since the pandemic began to 5,665, state officials said.