There were 17 additional COVID-19 cases in Knox County since Thanksgiving, the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday, Nov. 30. And, another Knox County resident died from the virus.

Since the pandemic began, 2,373 Knox County residents have been diagnosed with the virus, 57 have been admitted to hospitals, and 16 have died.

Statewide, an additional 1,173 cases were reported since Thanksgiving. There were 21 additional deaths reported statewide Nov. 30, increasing the number to 1,324. Those additional deaths included the Knox County resident and one resident of Lincoln County.

There were 22 additional people statewide admitted to hospitals in Maine with COVID-19 since Thanksgiving, increasing that number to 3,119 since the pandemic began in March 2020.

Hospitalizations of Maine residents remains at a near record high, as the CDC reports 323 Mainers are hospitalized with the virus, 99 in critical care units and 43 on respirators. Seventy percent of hospitalized patients are people who have not been vaccinated.

The CDC reports there are only 62 critical care beds available in the state not in use.

Seventy-six percent of the eligible population in Knox County are fully vaccinated. The state reports 29,033 Knox County residents have been fully vaccinated, an increase of 100 since Thursday. Statewide, 71 percent of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated.

Health officials continue to urge people wear masks in indoor public places and to get vaccinated.

Maine Gov. Janet Mills issued a statement Monday, Nov. 29 about the threat from the new Omicron variant of the virus.

“I have asked the Maine Department of Health and Human Services and the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention to closely track the new Omicron variant, particularly its severity, transmissibility, and its potential impact on Maine people and our health care systems,” Gov. Mills stated.

“Omicron has not been detected in Maine, or the United States, as of now. Our partnership with The Jackson Laboratory, which continues to conduct genomic sequencing of positive tests to determine the presence of variants in Maine, positions us well to detect this new variant.

“We will also remain in close contact with our hospital systems and other health care providers to assess their capacity and work with them to ensure that Maine people have access to quality health care,” the governor continued.

“The emergence of Omicron once again underscores the importance of taking commonsense steps like wearing masks when inside at public places, and, most importantly, getting vaccinated, including now getting your booster if you can. Vaccination remains the best and most effective way to protect your health and that of your loved ones, and we continue to strongly urge Maine people to get their shot, regardless of whether it’s your first or your third,” Gov. Mills concluded.