Maine CDC reports 300 new COVID-19 cases, 9 additional deaths – Press Herald

State health officials reported 300 new cases of COVID-19 but nine additional deaths on Wednesday.

The 300 new infections is a marked decrease from both the seven-day average and the record numbers of cases that the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention logged over several days last week. Maine averaged 515 new cases daily for the week ending on Wednesday compared to 559 for the same period one week ago.

Maine’s positivity rate, which reflects the percentage of tests coming back positive for coronavirus, as well as hospitalizations have also been declining in recent days in what state health officials hope is a sign that the latest surge is easing.

While new figures were not yet available for Wednesday, hospitalizations in Maine fell from 192 to 177 between Monday and Tuesday compared to a peak of 235 hospitalizations on Sept. 25. Maine’s seven-day positivity rate was 4.3 percent, well below the more than 6 percent

Maine CDC’s lab is also making progress in reducing a backlog of positive cases requiring review to distinguish new infections from repeat positive tests for known cases. The backlog stood at 600 cases on Tuesday, down from roughly 2,500 cases requiring review one week earlier.

The nine additional deaths raised Maine’s total number of COVID-related deaths to 1,045 for the pandemic, although the timeframe for the deaths was not immediately clear. To date, the Maine CDC has tracked 92,665 confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 since March 2020.

Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine CDC, is expected to hold a briefing on the COVID-19 situation in the state at 2 p.m.

On the vaccination front, 74.4 percent of all eligible Mainers had received either both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or the single-shot vaccine produced by Johnson & Johnson as of Wednesday. That figure drops to 65.5 percent when including children under age 12 who are not yet eligible for vaccination.

Maine continues to have among the highest full vaccination rates in the country, led only by Vermont, Connecticut and Rhode Island.

This story will be updated.


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