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Maryland reports 2,149 new coronavirus cases, most COVID-19 deaths since June

Maryland reported 2,149 new coronavirus cases Tuesday, the second-highest daily total during the pandemic, and 26 deaths tied to COVID-19, the most reported in a single day since June.

The state has reported 1,000 or more new cases for 14 straight days. Tuesday was the second time in four days it reported more than 2,000 cases after not doing so previously during the pandemic.

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With cases surging, virus-related hospitalizations have spiked, rising to 1,046 Tuesday, 61 more than Monday, the state reported. Just two weeks ago, hospitalizations in Maryland stood at 562. Tuesday marked the first time since June 7 the state has seen more than 1,000 hospitalizations.

Among those hospitalized, 255 needed intensive care, 18 more than Monday.

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Hospitalizations and deaths tend to lag behind increasing case totals, as it can take weeks for patients' symptoms to worsen and for some to die. Although case averages have been at their highest levels during the pandemic, the two-week average of newly-reported deaths was about a fifth of the May peak on Monday, but Tuesday’s death total was well above the 14-day death average, which ticked up to 12.

Maryland’s 14-day average of newly reported cases hit nearly 1,600 Tuesday, the highest it has been during the pandemic and about 50% higher than the previous peak in May The state’s seven-day case rate per 100,000 people has more than doubled since Nov. 3, going from 14.24 to 29.03 as of Monday.

“I’ve heard people say it’s just the flu. No, it’s not just the flu,” the Republican governor said Tuesday. “We’ve lost more Marylanders to COVID-19 than we lose each year to car accidents, gun violence and the flu combined.”

The new batch of numbers brings the state to a total of 169,805 confirmed cases and 4,186 deaths since March.

The virus is surging nationwide, as about one in every 323 people in the country have tested positive for the virus in the past week. Thirty states reported more cases in the past week than in any other prior weeklong period, including Maryland.

Allegany County added 107 new cases Tuesday, or more than 6% of the cases it has seen during the pandemic. The county has seen 926 of its 1,771 total confirmed cases in the past 14 days alone, according to The Baltimore Sun’s coronavirus database. Neighboring Garrett County also added about 5% of its total cases during the pandemic Tuesday alone.

The two counties have seen the most cases per 1,000 residents among Maryland jurisdictions in the past 14 days, with Allegany County at 13.15 and Garrett County at 5.76.

Baltimore County, which announced new virus-related restrictions last week, reported 303 new cases, among the most of jurisdictions statewide.

Marylanders in their 20s and 30s represented about 38% of new infections reported Tuesday.

Although older Marylanders have been more likely to die from the virus, Tuesday’s newly reported deaths underscored that younger Marylanders are not immune. The state reported one death of a person in their 20s, the 26th death reported in that age group statewide. One Marylander in their 40s and one in their 50s also were reported to have died.

But Tuesday’s death toll comprised mostly older Marylanders, including 15 people in their 80s or older and eight in their 60s and 70s. Marylanders in their 60s or older have made up more than 86% of Maryland’s death toll.

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Maryland’s reported seven-day positivity rate was 6.85%, up from 6.45% Monday. That figure has spiked from 4.1% just two weeks ago.

Tuesday’s numbers show Black Marylanders continue to be hit disproportionately by the coronavirus. They made up about 41% of the deaths reported in which race was known Tuesday. Black Marylanders make up about 31% of the state’s population but have represented more than 40% of the state’s death toll thus far.

Black and Latino residents have combined to make up about 59% of cases in which race was known despite making up less than half of the state’s population.

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