Arkansas Deaths Rise 15.8% in 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic pushed deaths in Arkansas up 15.8% in 2020 compared with 2019, according to Metroplan, the planning agency for central Arkansas.

“With an aging population and other demographic factors at work, the slow rise in total mortality from 2010 through 2019 was relatively normal,” Metroplan noted in its “Metro Trends: Economic Review & Outlook” report, released last month.

“The sudden upward turn in 2020 reflects the first year of Covid-19 in Arkansas,” the report said. “Deaths in 2020 were 15.8 percent higher than in the previous year and will come in above trend through at least 2021, and possibly into future years.”

Metroplan based its report on statistics from the Arkansas Department of Health, noting they were provisional in nature and subject to revision.