Restrictions lifted as hospitalizations fall


Occupancy back up to 75%, bars reopen


After a little over a month under stricter rules due to high numbers of COVID-19 hospitalizations, those restrictions were lifted for Hopkins County Thursday as hospitalizations decreased across the area, per a letter from the Department of State Health Services.

Occupancy allowed is now set at 75%, and bars can reopen. Elective surgeries at the hospital will also resume. The restrictions limiting or prohibiting these went into effect Jan. 4.

The percentage of COVID-19 hospitalizations inside Trauma Service Area F, which includes Hopkins County, sits at 12.33%, 2.67% below the 15% threshold according to the DSHS. For the restrictions to be lifted, the area had to fall below that threshold for seven consecutive days. If the area rises above that threshold for seven consecutive days, the restrictions will snap back in place.

A consistent decline in hospitalizations in the area has been seen for five straight days, according to DSHS data. At its peak Jan. 11, COVID-19 patients filled 23.42% of available beds.

According to Hopkins County emergency management releases, Jan. 7 and 8 peaked at 32 patients in the COVID unit at CHRISTUS Mother Frances - Sulphur Springs. With 96 beds, that means 33.33% of beds were filled with those patients.

As of Thursday, Hopkins County had a total of 2,713 confirmed or probably COVID-19 cases, 2,441 recoveries, 177 active cases and 95 fatalities.