In this Dec. 11, 2020, file photo, a man wears a mask while walking down Congress Street in Portland. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Another 10 Mainers have died as health officials on Tuesday reported 461 new coronavirus cases across the state.

Tuesday’s report brings the total number of coronavirus cases in Maine to 19,743. Of those, 17,095 have been confirmed positive, while 2,648 were classified as “probable cases,” according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The agency revised Monday’s cumulative total to 19,282, down from 19,285, meaning there was an increase of 458 over the previous day’s report. 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.

The statewide death toll now stands at  303. The deaths announced Tuesday were a man in his 90s from Cumberland County; a woman in her 80s from Cumberland County;  woman in her 90s from Cumberland County; a man in his 50s from Cumberland County; a man in his 80s from Hancock County; a man in his 60s from Kennebec County; a woman in her 90s from Penobscot County; a woman in her 60s from Sagadahoc County;  woman in her 80s from Somerset County; and woman in her 80s from York County.

Tuesday marked Sagadahoc County’s first virus-related death. Nearly all deaths have been in Mainers over age 60.


New cases were reported in Androscoggin (58), Aroostook (5), Cumberland (78), Franklin (21), Hancock (1), Kennebec (33), Knox (11), Lincoln (9), Oxford (53), Penobscot (82), Piscataquis (8), Sagadahoc (19), Somerset (11), Waldo (12), Washington (5) and York (55) counties, state data show.

The seven-day average for new coronavirus cases is 431.7, up from 425 a day ago, up from 404.6 a week ago and up from 202.9 a month ago.

Health officials have warned Mainers that “forceful and widespread” community transmission is being seen throughout the state. Every county is seeing high community transmission, which the Maine CDC defines as a case rate of 16 or more cases per 10,000 people.

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.

So far, 985 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus. Of those, 185 people are currently hospitalized, with 43 in critical care and 19 on ventilators.

Meanwhile, only seven more recoveries from the coronavirus have been reported to the Maine CDC, bringing total recoveries to 10,844. That means there are at least 8,556 active confirmed and “probable” cases in the state, which is up from 8,155 on Monday.

The agency’s director, Nirav Shah, said Monday afternoon that his investigators have struggled to keep up with the surge in virus transmission, making it difficult with them to follow up with previous cases to confirm recoveries. Instead, the Maine CDC is just releasing data on those recoveries directly reported to them.

A majority of the cases — 11,635 — have been in Mainers under age 50, while more cases have been reported in women than men, according to the Maine CDC.

As of Tuesday, there have been 1,100,636 negative test results out of 1,126,503 overall. About 2.2 percent of all tests have come back positive, the most recently available Maine CDC data show.

The coronavirus has hit hardest in Cumberland County, where 5,929 cases have been reported and where the bulk of virus deaths — 88 — have been concentrated. Other cases have been reported in Androscoggin (2,273), Aroostook (432), Franklin (411), Hancock (476), Kennebec (1,486), Knox (307), Lincoln (246), Oxford (933), Penobscot (1,658), Piscataquis (100), Sagadahoc (309), Somerset (651), Waldo (348), Washington (306) and York (3,877) counties. Information about where an additional case was reported wasn’t immediately available.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the coronavirus had sickened 18,134,027 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 321,301 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.

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