Another Mainer dies as state passes 10,000-case mark
By Lynne Fort, Bangor Daily News Staff
This story will be updated.
One more Mainer has died as health officials on Saturday reported 168 new coronavirus cases across the state.
Saturday’s report brings the total number of coronavirus cases in Maine to 10,123. Of those, 9,075 have been confirmed positive, while 1,048 were classified as “probable cases,” according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
The agency revised Friday’s cumulative total to 9,955, down from 9,958, meaning there was a net loss of 3 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.
New cases were reported in Androscoggin (18), Aroostook (3), Cumberland (30), Franklin (5), Hancock (7), Kennebec (18), Knox (3), Lincoln (1), Oxford (1), Penobscot (31), Piscataquis (2), Sagadahoc (1), Somerset (10), Waldo (1), Washington (6) and York (30) counties, state data show. Information about where an additional case was reported wasn’t immediately available.
The seven-day average for new coronavirus cases is 192.3, up from 190.7 a day ago, up from 181.4 a week ago and up from 33.7 a month ago.
Health officials have warned Mainers that “forceful and widespread” community transmission is being seen throughout the state. Five counties are seeing high community transmission: Franklin, Knox, Somerset, Waldo and Washington counties.
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.
While rates remain lower than most of the U.S, Maine continues to see a rapid rise in COVID-19 cases.
As cases rise, Gov. Janet Mills has increased restrictions to hamper the spread of the virus. Mills issued an executive order on Thursday requiring several Maine businesses — including restaurants, bars and casinos — to close at 9 p.m. That order began on Friday and will be in place until Dec. 6.
Outbreaks also continue to occur across the state, including a new outbreak at Bath Iron Works, which has had other cases in the past.
The statewide death toll now stands at 174. Nearly all deaths have been in Mainers over age 60.
So far, 636 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Information about those who are currently hospitalized wasn’t immediately available.
Meanwhile, 123 more people have recovered from the coronavirus, bringing total recoveries to 7,713. That means there are 2,068 active confirmed and “probable” cases in the state, which is down from 2,195 on Friday.
A majority of the cases — 59.5 percent — have been in Mainers under age 50, while more cases have been reported in women than men, according to the Maine CDC.
As of Friday, there had been 795,936 negative test results out of 808,227. About 1.46 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 3,488 cases have been reported and where the bulk of virus deaths — 71 — have been concentrated. Other cases have been reported in Androscoggin (1,327), Aroostook (94), Franklin (192), Hancock (208), Kennebec (657), Knox (182), Lincoln (132), Oxford (278), Penobscot (629), Piscataquis (34), Sagadahoc (128), Somerset (397), Waldo (203), Washington (178) and York (1,995) counties. Information about where an additional case was reported wasn’t immediately available.
As of Saturday morning, the coronavirus had sickened 11,915,859 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 254,451 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.