The Portland Expo is sporting a giant "spread love not germs" banner encouraging people to wear their masks and prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Four more Mainers died as health officials on Friday reported 700 new coronavirus cases across the state.

Friday’s report brings the total number of coronavirus cases in Maine to 24,901, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s up from 24,201 on Thursday.

Of those, 21,144 have been confirmed positive, while 3,757 were classified as “probable cases,” the Maine CDC reported.

The latest deaths include a woman in her 90s from Cumberland County; a woman in her 80s from Penobscot County; a man in his 90s from Washington County; and a woman in her 80s from Washington County. The statewide death toll now stands at 351.

As of Friday, 30,877 Mainers have been vaccinated against COVID-19, or 2.02 percent of the population. Maine ranks third in the country for the rate of vaccination according to Bloomberg’s vaccine tracker, coming in behind only West Virginia at 2.50 percent and South Dakota at 2.14 percent. The fast pace comes despite the state receiving thousands fewer doses than expected. 

Information on where new cases were detected was not available on Friday morning due to technical problems, the Maine CDC said. The current number of active cases was also not available.

Maine’s seven-day average for new coronavirus cases was 426.9 on Thursday, down from 431.6 a day before and 460.6 a week before but up from 172 a month before.

So far, 1,080 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus. As of Friday, 188 people are currently hospitalized, with 48 in critical care and 19 on ventilators.

There have been 1,177,522 negative test results out of 1,207,730 overall. About 2.4 percent of all tests have come back positive, Maine CDC data show.

The coronavirus has hit hardest in Cumberland County, where as of Thursday 7,233 cases had been reported and where the bulk of virus deaths — 97 — have been concentrated. Other cases had been reported in Androscoggin (2,667), Aroostook (617), Franklin (451), Hancock (550), Kennebec (1,812), Knox (370), Lincoln (301), Oxford (1,115), Penobscot (2,050), Piscataquis (117), Sagadahoc (387), Somerset (743), Waldo (380), Washington (377) and York (5,030) counties.

As of Friday morning, the coronavirus had sickened 19,990,390 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 346,013 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.

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