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Mississippi, Arkansas Governors Struggling with Next Steps

LITTLE ROCK, AR (Ben Baxton) — Two southern governors are on the brink of relaxing some of their own self-imposed Coronavirus restrictions -starting as early as next week. In Arkansas, Governor Asa Hutchinson says that elective procedures can resume in Arkansas on Monday, although patients will need to be tested for COVID-19. Hutchinson will make announcements next week about when restaurants, gyms, beauty and barbershops and places of worship might also reopen. Mississippi’s statewide ‘shelter-in-place’ order is set to expire Monday and Governor Tate Reeves says the order may be extended for individuals at high risk of contracting the virus and passing away from it, instead of everyone else in the state. Reeves and health officials have been discussing a slow reopening of the state’s economy and State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs says Mississippi’s healthcare system has not been overwhelmed as resource usage has fallen well below original projections. National “experts” thought the state might need a peak of 4000 hospital beds, but this week Mississippi is using less than 400 and the number of ventilators and ICU beds in use has also declined.

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