Hogan: Remain Vigilant, Wear Masks as MD Adds Testing Sites

    Photo courtesy WTOP

    Confirmed coronavirus cases in Maryland climbed by 477 on Monday, the Maryland Department of Health said, while the fatality count grew by six.

    Maryland — which recorded its first positive infections on March 5 — now has 67,254 known cases, according to state health officials.

    The state’s death toll now stands at 3,048. That figure doesn’t include the 127 others whose deaths were linked to the virus, but never confirmed by a lab test. They are considered “probable deaths.”

    While Monday’s additions show promise, Gov. Larry Hogan said Marylanders shouldn’t become complacent — as that could lead to a spike in infections.

    “I want to continue to stress to all Marylanders that the fight against this virus is far from over,” said Hogan. “While our numbers continue to trend in a positive direction, we are seeing rapidly rising case numbers in states all across the country — and even on the other side of our state border in some nearby communities. It is vital that Marylanders remain vigilant, wear face coverings, wash their hands, and practice physical distancing so that we can continue on our road to recovery.”

    All phases of Hogan’s recovery plan require residents to enforce social distancing guidelines and meet a number of public health benchmarks. Those benchmarks include an increase in coronavirus testing and 14-day declines in coronavirus infections, hospitalizations and deaths.

    According to Hogan, the statewide positivity rate has dropped to a new low of 4.84%. A day earlier, the rolling seven-day average was 4.89%.

    One of the most effective ways to stem the spread of COVID-19, health officials believe, is through widespread testing and contact tracing.

    On Monday, Hogan announced that COVID-19 testing has now expanded to 215 major sites statewide — up more than double from a month ago.

    “The state has, and will continue to have, an abundant supply of testing available at no out-of-pocket cost to anyone who needs to be tested,” the Republican governor said.

    According to the latest figures, there are now 447 coronavirus patients in hospital. Of that, 160 are in the intensive care unit.

    To see the story by Alessia Grunberger as it originally appeared on Patch.com, click here

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