Maine reported 184 brand-new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, setting yet another record as the disease continues to spread out.
There were 183 cases reported Thursday, 151 on Wednesday and 127 on Tuesday– all succeeding records throughout the pandemic. Cases are climbing up in Maine and nationwide. The seven-day daily average of brand-new cases in Maine stood at 124.9 on Friday, compared to 75.8 a week earlier and 31.1 a month ago.
The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported a significant outbreak on Friday afternoon, with 44 citizens and 20 personnel at Russell Park Rehabilitation and Living Center, a nursing home in Lewiston, screening favorable.
“Checking is ongoing, so additional cases could be recognized during the weekend,” Robert Long, spokesperson for the Maine CDC, stated in a statement. “Maine CDC’s outbreak response team is working closely with Russell Park staff to arrange further testing, offer appropriate personal protective equipment and to ensure that proper infection procedures remain in place.”
The company is presently investigating break outs at 6 other long-lasting care centers, consisting of 26 cases at Peak Healthcare and Rehab in Canton; 27 cases at Woodlands Memory Care in Rockland; 21 cases at Durgin Pines in Kittery; eight cases at Sandy River Nursing Center in Farmington; three cases at D’Youville Pavilion in Lewiston and three cases at Sanfield Rehab and Living Center in Hartland.
Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine CDC, raised alarms at the media rundown Friday about the increase in retirement home outbreaks and medical facility admissions. He noted that 2 weeks earlier, 8 people were hospitalized and none were in extensive care systems, but 37 individuals now are hospitalized, with 14 in intensive care.
In addition, he stated that 18 percent of all cases because the pandemic started in March have actually happened within the past two weeks.
In general, 7,444 people in Maine have actually fallen ill with COVID-19, and 150 have passed away. No extra deaths were reported Friday.
Shah stated there’s no location in Maine that’s “safe” from the infection.
“What this newest spike in cases means is each and every single individual ought to recognize it can happen to you,” he stated.
Shah said another change that occurred this fall is captured in information from contact tracing, which shows that the typical variety of close contacts per contaminated individual was 5.8 in October, compared to 3.5 when determining the entire pandemic. A close contact of someone who is contaminated need to be quarantined for 2 weeks to avoid the spread of the illness.
If each contaminated person now has more close contacts than the spring, that suggests individuals are most likely to have actually sent the virus to others, he stated.
“It informs us individuals are out and about, communicating with friends and coworkers far more so than earlier in pandemic,” Shah said.
With cases escalating, the Maine Department of Health and Human Solutions released brand-new requirements for neighborhood sports and aligned their schedule with the winter season high school sports season.
Jeanne Lambrew, Maine’s health and human services commissioner, stated at the media briefing that all youth community sports that are ongoing– such as youth hockey and basketball– should be stopped, and practices can resume Dec. 7. Games can start in January, when the winter season high school sports season is anticipated to start.
South Portland soccer players and coaching staff wear their masks on the sidelines throughout their game versus Portland at Fitzpatrick Arena on Thursday. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer Likewise on Friday, the Maine Department of Education designated Knox and Franklin counties as “yellow “under its color-coded advisory system for school
reopenings. Those 2 counties join Somerset and Washington counties, which were yellow last week. While many schools around Maine are currently operating under hybrid designs, the yellow designation indicates schools might take additional actions to restrict the number of individuals in buildings, and suspend or cancel sports and extracurricular activities. Waldo County, which had actually been yellow, rejoined Maine’s 12 other counties in the green classification.
In college, the University of Southern Maine and the University of Maine School of Law closed for in-person classes on Friday after a “noticeable level” of the unique coronavirus was discovered in the wastewater at the University of Southern Maine’s Gorham school. The viral load of the sample is “provisionally analyzed by the UMS Scientific Advisory Board as being higher than expected based on the known caseload,” the University of Maine System stated in a press release.
Students and personnel are expected to return on Monday, pending extra wastewater tasting and analysis of ongoing asymptomatic testing at the university, the release said.
The University of Maine at Presque Isle also went to online-only knowing on Friday, after one case of COVID-19 was reported there. Students are anticipated back on Monday.
As cases have actually skyrocketed, Gov. Janet Mills has actually called up restrictions to try to keep the infection in check, including a strengthened mask mandate on Thursday.
Earlier today, Mills decreased the optimum size of indoor gatherings from 100 to 50, forever delayed the opening of bars and tasting rooms, and restored testing and quarantine requirements for travelers entering Maine from specific states.
The mask mandate needs people to wear masks in almost all cases beyond their houses and backyards, even when physical distancing is possible. It also requires small companies to publish indications advising customers that they should wear masks inside your home.
“It’s a common-sense guideline,” Lambrew said. “If you’re asking yourself whether you need to do it, you probably should.”
Because of the increased evidence of transmission in little gatherings inside as the weather has gotten cooler, Shah stated that “using face coverings with a little group of good friends– specifically inside– is the best thing to do.”
Masks are needed in all “public settings,” which are defined broadly in the guv’s executive order. In nearly all indoor public locations a mask is needed, and masks are needed outdoors at “play grounds, parking area, pathways, athletic and sports places, and other areas such as lines for takeout service.” Masks are likewise needed on mass transit and “buildings and premises that are normally available to the public.”
“This degree of community transmission means that face coverings and physical distancing are more crucial than ever,” Shah stated in a tweet Thursday. “Why do I fret? Today’s neighborhood transmission can become tomorrow’s break outs in locations like nursing homes. We all need to do our part to keep them safe.”
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