The number of patients hospitalized in Arkansas due to COVID-19 continued to decline Thursday, even as the number of active cases in the state ticked up. Data from the Arkansas Department of Health showed 26 fewer hospitalized cases, bringing the active count to 505. There are 243 COVID-19 patients in ICU care and 153 patients on ventilators, a decline of 10 from the previous day in both categories. Over the last 11 days, Arkansas has seen continuous drops in hospitalizations, with the 7-day average for cases Thursday being 100 less than just a week before. Gov. Asa Hutchinson lauded the drop in hospitalizations and used the development to continue to encourage Arkansans to get vaccinated. Active cases increase for the first time in four days, going up 118 to 6,820. There were 781 new cases of the virus reported Thursday, moving the state’s total during the pandemic to 505,297. While Thursday did see a bump in active cases, the 7-day trend is still down more than 1,600 from last week. Health officials also reported 10 more deaths due to the virus, which sets the total for the state at 8,176. More than 6,369 new COVID-19 vaccine doses were administered in Arkansas in the last 24 hours. The number of fully immunized Arkansans went up to 1,367,271, with an added 286,008 Arkansans being partially vaccinated. Children 11-17 saw the biggest increase in cases of 119, while adults 25-34 were right behind that with 118 cases in the last day.