Maryland reports more than 200 COVID cases for the first time since May, but with 30% less testing

Maryland health officials reported more than 200 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 statewide Wednesday for the first time since May 30.

Testing levels are down about 30% since late May and are on a downward trend, according to state data. A total of 14,864 new tests were reported over the past 24 hours. Decreased testing limits the state’s surveillance of the spread of virus, including its more contagious delta variant.


The number of Marylanders hospitalized with the virus has increased for the past four days, reaching 146 as of Wednesday, and the state reported four more deaths due to COVID-19. Maryland has not reported more than 10 COVID-19 deaths in one day since May 28.

The 244 new cases Wednesday pushed the state’s pandemic total to 464,735. The state’s seven-day testing positivity rate, which has risen all but one day this month, reached 1.65%.


In Maryland, 9,573 people have died due to confirmed cases of COVID-19 since March 2020.

About 58% of Marylanders are fully vaccinated with either both doses of the Moderna or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot as of Wednesday, according to state data. About 76% of residents 18 and older have received at least one dose.

Howard County continues to lead the state in vaccinations, with more than 67% of its population fully vaccinated, compared with nearly 37% in Somerset County, which trails all other jurisdictions.

The rise in cases in Maryland Wednesday occurred as officials around the country are considering whether to reintroduce masking requirements in indoor spaces and renewing efforts to urge unvaccinated people, who now account for the most serious cases and deaths, to get the inoculations.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, which supports bringing students back to school, recommended that masks be worn, citing “potential difficulty in monitoring or enforcing mask policies for those who are not vaccinated.”

Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous county, reinstated its mask mandate in indoor public spaces as of Saturday, regardless of people’s vaccination status.

Both nationwide and in Maryland the average number of new daily cases has doubled over the past two weeks. But Maryland still has one of the country’s six lowest case rates — just over 2 per 100,000 — and one of the highest vaccination rates, per The New York Times coronavirus tracker.