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A year later, COVID-19 has killed over 7,700 in Maryland, infected at least 385,678

A year ago Friday, Maryland officials confirmed the first cases of the coronavirus, kicking off a pandemic that’s impacted every corner of the state. The COVID-19 disease has now claimed the lives of at least 7,748 Maryland residents, and infected 385,678, according to the latest data released Friday.

Here’s where Maryland’s coronavirus statistics stood Friday.

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Cases

New cases were reported in 913 Maryland residents Friday, according to the Maryland Department of Health. Two weeks have passed since the state last recorded more than 1,000 cases in a day, and the Friday’s figure well below the pandemic peak of 3,792 cases on Dec. 4.

Over the last two weeks, Maryland has averaged 765 new cases everyday. That’s higher than the lowest recorded rate in July, but down almost four-fold from the record average of 2,949 daily cases reported Jan. 12.

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Deaths

State health officials reported Friday eight more deaths from the virus. The daily death toll peaked on May 12 at 70. Now, the state has averaged 18 new fatalities daily over the past two weeks.

Hospitalizations

As of Friday morning, 849 patients remained hospitalized in Maryland because of the virus, seven fewer than the day before. Of those, 229 required intensive care, 13 more than Thursday.

The number of people hospitalized Friday is less than half of the pandemic high of the 1,952 people who were hospitalized battling the disease Jan. 12.

Vaccinations

Maryland reported Friday that 29,909 more people received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, while 16,475 more were fully vaccinated. Almost 16% of the state’s population has received their preliminary immunization, while 8.7% have received both shots required to protect against severe illness.

Providers across the state have administered 1.48 million vaccines since Dec. 14. With the 46,384 vaccines administered Thursday, a new daily high, the state is now averaging 36,619 vaccinations daily for the past week.

Vaccines by age:

More than 45% of Marylanders who are 65 and older had gotten initial immunizations as of Thursday, health department data shows.

Vaccines by race and ethnicity:

White people in Maryland have received about 3.9 times as many vaccines as Black people. White people have gotten about 65% of all doses administered in the state for which the race of the vaccine recipient was known; Black people have received 16.8%.

Hispanic residents have received about 4.3% of the vaccine doses for which the ethnicity of the recipient was known.

Black residents make up about 31% of Maryland’s population and have accounted for about a third of coronavirus cases and 35% of deaths for which race and ethnicity was recorded. Hispanic or Latino residents account for approximately 11% of the state’s population and 19% of COVID-19 cases and 9% of deaths.

Roughly 58.5% of Marylanders are white, and they account for 35% of the state’s cases and 52% of the casualties.

Vaccines by county:

Majority Black Baltimore City and Charles and Prince George’s counties continue to lag behind other jurisdictions in vaccinating their populations. Those jurisdictions have administered first doses to approximately 13%, 11% and 9% of their respective populations.

Prince George’s has the second biggest population in Maryland, with about 909,000 people, and Baltimore has the fourth largest, with about 593,000 residents. Charles County has about 163,000 people, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

Meanwhile, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, the less populous Kent, Talbot and Worcester counties, have preliminarily vaccinated 23.4%, 22.6% and 22.4% of their populations, respectively. Kent has about 19,000 people, Talbot has 37,000 and Worcester 52,000. All of those counties are more than 80% white, according to census data.

Positivity Rate

Maryland’s testing positivity rate ticked upward 0.04 percentage points Friday to 3.28%. That’s still about a third of what it was when testing positivity reached a winter surge high of 9.47% in early January.

Almost 42,000 tests for the coronavirus were conducted over the last 24 hours, the state reported. That brings to more than 8 million the total of number of tests completed in Maryland.

Variants

There are currently three coronavirus variants causing cases of COVID-19 in Maryland. The strains were detected first in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil. All are believed to be more contagious, while scientists said after recent studies the U.K. mutation is “likely” more lethal.

As of Thursday, there were 109 Maryland cases of the U.K. variant first, 12 cases of the South African variant and one of the Brazilian mutation, according to data reported by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Those strains were first detected in Maryland in January and February, though the U.K. variant is expected to become the dominant strain in the country by the end of March.

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