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Another 24 new coronavirus cases have been reported in Maine, health officials said Thursday.
Thursday’s increase brings the total coronavirus cases reported in Maine to 3,737. Of those, 3,334 had been confirmed positive, while 403 were classified as “probable cases,” according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Maine CDC spokesperson Robert Long said investigators determined 10 previously reported confirmed and “probable” cases did not involve the coronavirus nor Mainers, so were removed from the cumulative total, meaning there was a net increase of 14 cases.
No new deaths were reported Thursday, leaving the statewide death toll at 118. Nearly all deaths have been in Mainers over age 60.
So far, 378 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Of those, 12 people are currently hospitalized, with eight in critical care and three on ventilators.
Meanwhile, 23 more people have recovered from the coronavirus, bringing total recoveries to 3,239. That means there are 380 active and “probable” cases in the state, down from 389 on Wednesday.
Here’s the latest on the coronavirus and its impact on Maine.
— “The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention is examining whether an outbreak at the Presque Isle Walmart is associated with construction workers at the store, said Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah in a briefing Thursday.” — David Marino Jr., BDN
—“The pandemic has taken a bite out of Maine’s seasonal rental and hotel markets, but it is not hurting real estate prices at all. There is growing anecdotal evidence that, as happened after the 9/11 terror attacks, urban dwellers from out of state are snapping up properties in Maine. That is not yet showing up in the latest data, but prices are on the rise, and industry experts expect that that will continue as more people decide to move to Maine.” — Fred Bever, Maine Public
—“Maine saw new jobless claims drop sharply last week to the lowest they have been since mid-March when the coronavirus pandemic reached the state.” — Christopher Burns, BDN
—“Organizations that work with low-income renters are gearing up for a rash of eviction filings as Maine courts begin dealing with cases next month for the first time since mid-March, a moratorium from federally funded housing programs expires and the weekly $600 boost to unemployment benefits ends. But the wave of eviction filings might not materialize immediately, as attorneys for landlords say they don’t have clients eager to kick tenants out of their buildings for unpaid rent.” — Judy Harrison, BDN
—“The Bangor School Department is not planning to have every student back in school full time this fall even if the state’s health markers allow it. Superintendent Betsy Webb outlined the school department’s reopening plans to the Bangor School Committee at a Wednesday night meeting.” — Eesha Pendharkar, BDN
—“Jennifer Craig was checking into the Waldo County YMCA recently when she heard the front desk phone ring twice in the span of just a few minutes. Both calls were from members who were canceling their memberships. They weren’t outliers, either. The calls started in March, when the facility shut its doors because of the pandemic, and haven’t slowed since its June reopening. Employees were hesitant to disclose how many of the roughly 4,200 members have canceled — but it’s a lot, they said.” — Abigail Curtis, BDN
—“UMaine-Machias on Tuesday announced that it was suspending its varsity athletics programs for a minimum of three years. The announcement stunned UMaine-Machias athletes and staff alike.” — Pete Warner, BDN
As of Thursday evening, the coronavirus has sickened 4,026,288 people in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as caused 144,032 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.