A joint Fayetteville and Washington County news release reported by 40/29 says there’s been a positive test for coronavirus of a Fayetteville resident. No other details at the moment.

The state Health Department hasn’t updated its webpage with coronavirus stats today.


But, coincidentally, state Rep. Denise Garner (D-Fayetteville) made public her letter to Gov. Asa Hutchinson calling for a shutdown of all but essential activities.


It’s difficult to imagine the stress you’re under as you agonize over decisions having to be made for our state. And I know you’re hearing from many experts.


I’m writing these views from my experience as a nurse practitioner, owner of a restaurant that we’ve closed until safe, wife of a 65 y/o, cancer survivor MD/JD husband on the front lines here in Fayetteville, mom of one MD, MPH, MSHE son who’s at the epicenter of trying to lessen the curve in TN, and one out of a job because of the shutdowns.


I’m asking you to please, make decisions based on the assumption that we already have Covid-19 spread in our state.


Our pediatricians are telling us they have clinically diagnosed patients that were not a priority for testing.


We cannot depend on all of them to self-quarantine as advised. Many certainly spread the virus before showing symptoms & after suggested quarantine.

Conservative estimates suggest actual cases in each state are about 10 times the number of diagnosed, but researchers in Boston project it is upwards of 50 times the number of diagnosed.


We can see from China, Italy, Seattle, San Francisco, and New York where this is going.


Our health care system will be overrun in a matter of weeks, if not before.


Decisive action today will save lives.


There is also a strong economic case to make to take aggressive actions now. The longer we fail to act, the longer this continues. That will lead to more job loss, more closed businesses, more bankruptcies. It will not take a long-term view to see that waiting to act did not help local economies and small businesses.


These are our families, our friends, our communities at stake. I know this is weighing heavily.


You can save lives and mitigate the economic impact by aggressive, decisive action.




Shut down non-essential services through executive action. Call in the National Guard to aid with logistics, field hospital setup, etc. Develop surge capacity for beds, equipment, and workforce through executive action and integration of the non-health sectors. Communicate roles and responsibilities to all levels of government, individuals, and the private sector.


This is a daunting task in front of us, but we are in this together.

Decisive action today can make all the difference.


Thank you,
Denise Garner
AR State Representative, District 84

Denise Garner, Sen. Tom Cotton and me on the same page.


I think the governor will do more sooner rather than later. His next briefing is at 1:30 p.m. today.