Another Mainer has died as health officials on Thursday reported 207 new coronavirus cases across the state.
Thursday’s report brings the total number of coronavirus cases in Maine to 8,395. Of those, 7,517 have been confirmed positive, while 878 were classified as “probable cases,” according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
The agency revised Wednesday’s cumulative total to 8,188, down from 8,202, meaning there was a net increase of 193 over the previous day’s report, state data show. As the Maine CDC continues to investigate previously reported cases, some are determined to have not been the coronavirus, or coronavirus cases not involving Mainers. Those are removed from the state’s cumulative total. The Bangor Daily News reports on the number of new cases reported to the Maine CDC in the previous 24 hours, rather than the increase of daily cumulative cases.
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New cases were reported in Androscoggin (41), Aroostook (1), Cumberland (36), Franklin (2), Hancock (13), Kennebec (23), Knox (11), Lincoln (2), Oxford (13), Penobscot (11), Sagadahoc (6), Somerset (7), Waldo (4), Washington (4) and York (33) counties, state data show.
Only Piscataquis County reported no new cases in the previous 24 hours.
The seven-day average for new coronavirus cases is 165.9, up from 163 a day ago, 128.1 a week ago and up from 31.8 a month ago.
Thursday’s report marks yet another day of record-high new cases amid the ongoing statewide surge in virus transmission. It broke the previous record-high of 202 seen on Sunday, according to Maine CDC data. Health officials have warned Mainers that “forceful and widespread” community transmission is being seen throughout the state.
There are two criteria for establishing community transmission: at least 10 confirmed cases and that at least 25 percent of those are not connected to either known cases or travel.
Despite the sudden surge in virus transmission, state officials are reluctant to institute a new stay-at-home order similar to what Mainers saw in the pandemic’s early weeks. Health Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew said Monday that “nothing is off the table” to stop the spread of the virus, but said a stay-at-home order is not currently under consideration.
Last week, Gov. Janet Mills ordered Mainers to wear face coverings in all public spaces regardless of their distances from others. That move came after she delayed a planned reopening of bars and tasting rooms as cases began to climb statewide.
The latest death involved a man in his 70s from Androscoggin County, bringing the statewide death toll to 159. In the past two weeks, Maine has recorded 12 deaths. That’s as many as the state saw in the two months prior combined. Nearly all deaths have been in Mainers over age 60.
As of Thursday, there are open outbreaks at nine Pre-K-12 schools (Young School; Coastal Ridge Elementary; Guy E Rowe School; Helen Thompson School; Madison Area Memorial HS; Medomak Valley High School; Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School; Thornton Academy and York High School). Over the last 30 days, there have been a total of 196 coronavirus cases in Maine Pre-K-12 schools with 166 being confirmed and 30 classified as “probable.”
So far, 553 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Of those, 62 people are currently hospitalized, with 16 people in critical care and six on ventilators.
Meanwhile, 66 more people have recovered from the coronavirus, bringing total recoveries to 6,292. That means there are 1,944 active confirmed and “probable” cases in the state, which is up from 1,818 on Wednesday. It’s yet another record high for active cases.
A majority of the cases — 4,843 — have been in Mainers under age 50, while more cases have been reported in women than men, according to the Maine CDC.
As of Thursday, there have been 727,158 negative test results out of 737,392 overall. About 1.3 percent of all tests have come back positive, Maine CDC data show.
The coronavirus has hit hardest in Cumberland County, where 3,098 cases have been reported and where the bulk of virus deaths — 70 — have been concentrated. Other cases have been reported in Androscoggin (1,081), Aroostook (83), Franklin (134), Hancock (137), Kennebec (525), Knox (155), Lincoln (92), Oxford (220), Penobscot (426), Piscataquis (19), Sagadahoc (113), Somerset (315), Waldo (186), Washington (126) and York (1,684) counties. Information about where an additional case was reported wasn’t immediately available.
As of Thursday evening, the coronavirus had sickened 10,500,259 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 242,436 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.
Correction: An earlier version of this report misstated the cumulative total of coronavirus cases reported in Hancock County.