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COVID-19 cases continue spike in Midcoast, state, CDC reports on Monday

By Stephen Betts | Oct 26, 2020
Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah

Eight more cases of COVID-19 cases have been diagnosed in Midcoast residents, the state reported on Monday.

And the spike in cases statewide continues, setting another record for active cases.

Statewide, 53 new cases were reported by the CDC Oct. 26. This brings the total number of cases since the outbreak began to 6,254. There have been 190 new cases diagnosed in the past four days.

There were 29 new recoveries statewide, the CDC reported Oct. 26, increasing the number to 5,363.

The number of Mainers with COVID-19 to die since the outbreak began in Maine in mid-March remained at 146 for the ninth consecutive day.

This means number of active confirmed or probable statewide cases of COVID-19 rose 24, setting a record high of 745, the state reported Oct. 26.

The number of active cases in Knox County rose by four due to five additional cases diagnosed and one recovery, the state reported Monday, increasing the active cases to 12.

There have been 66 cases overall diagnosed in Knox County residents since the pandemic struck Maine in mid-March. Fifty-three people have recovered and one person died. An additional person has been hospitalized in the county, increasing the number to six since the outbreak began seven months ago. Those hospitalized are included in the overall number of cases.

Knox County has recorded 33 new cases since Sept. 15. That includes six at the Lonza Rockland plant on Thomaston Street. The Maine Department of Corrections also reported a staff member tested positive earlier this week at the Maine State Prison in Warren. Also Oct. 8, RSU 40 confirmed two individuals associated with Warren Community School tested positive for COVID-19. A person associated with Medomak Valley High School was also diagnosed over the weekend.

The CDC regularly updates the number of cases by the zip code of the people diagnosed. The latest figures are through Oct. 18.

Warren has had the most cases at 10, according to the CDC.

Camden, Rockland, and Union each have had nine of their residents diagnosed with the new virus.

Eight Rockport residents have been diagnosed with the virus.

For smaller communities, the state gives a range of cases. Cushing, Hope, Owls Head, Spruce Head, Thomaston, and Vinalhaven have each had one to five of their residents diagnosed with COVID-19.

The communities that have yet to have any of their residents diagnosed are North Haven, South Thomaston, and Tenants Harbor.

Lincoln County active cases remained at 13, the CDC reported Oct. 26. There have been 60 cases overall, 46 recoveries and one death. Five people have been hospitalized.

Waldo County's active cases increased by two due to two additional cases and an additional recovery, the CDC reported Oct. 26.

Sixty-six new cases have been diagnosed since Oct. 15. There have been 148 cases overall, 83 recoveries and 14 deaths since mid-March. Ten people have been hospitalized since the outbreak began, including four in about the past week.

The Maine CDC reported Friday that 57 cases have been associated with the Brooks Pentecostal Church and its affiliated school, Lighthouse Christian Academy in Brooks. CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah said the outbreak is evolving quickly and are tied to individual cases at three Waldo County schools and one long-term nursing care facility. There are no outbreaks detected yet outside the church and Christian academy. Three of those people have been hospitalized.

Waldo County also had an outbreak early in the summer at a long-term care facility in Belfast.

The CDC reported as of Oct. 19,  there have been 298 positive tests of out-of-staters diagnosed in Maine, out of 12,496 tests given. This is not broken down by the county where they were.

Of the cases statewide as of Oct. 19, 1,107 have been healthcare workers.

Since the outbreak began, 477 people have been hospitalized in Maine. There are currently eight people in the hospital, none in critical care, and none on a ventilator.

Of the 146 Maine people with COVID-19 who died, 77 were 80 years old or older, 45 were in their 70s, 14 were in their 60s, five in their 50s, three people in their 40s and one in their 30s and one in his 20s.

Cumberland County has seen the worst of the outbreak, with 70 of the deaths being residents from there. York County has had 20 deaths, Waldo County has 14 deaths, Kennebec 11, 10 in Androscoggin, eight in Somerset, six in Penobscot, two in Oxford County and one each in Knox, Lincoln, Aroostook, Franklin and Hancock counties.

Of the people who tested positive as of Oct. 22, the Maine CDC reports most were people in their 20s, who accounted for 1,033 of the confirmed cases since the outbreak started. There have been 1019 in their 50s, 956 in their 30s, 864 in their 40s, 814 who were younger than 20, 703 people in their 60s, 451 in their 70s and 414 who were 80 or older.

Women account for 51% of the confirmed cases and men 49%.

The CDC figures show a dramatic disparity based on race. Of the 6,254 cases statewide, 995 of the people diagnosed have been black. That translates to 16% of the cases. Black people account for less than 2% of Maine's population.

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