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Maryland tops 1,000 new COVID cases for third consecutive day, as other metrics tick up

As Maryland continues to escalate its COVID-19 vaccination effort, health officials reported Saturday more than 1,000 new cases of the disease for the third day in a row while the state’s testing positivity rate continued to tick up and hospitalizations increased.

Here’s where other coronavirus indicators stood Saturday:

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Cases

There were 1,118 coronavirus infections Saturday, bringing the state’s case count to 399,016 since health officials began to track the disease last year, according to Maryland Department of Health data.

Maryland has averaged 886 new cases daily over the last two weeks.

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Deaths

Health officials reported 26 more Marylanders dead from the disease Saturday, meaning the state has recorded 7,973 fatalities throughout the pandemic.

The state has not recorded a larger daily death count since February and has averaged 15 newly reported deaths every day for the last two weeks.

Hospitalizations

There were 34 more people in Maryland hospitals facing the effects of COVID-19 compared to a day before. Of the 850 patients hospitalized across the state, 202 required intensive care, 16 fewer than Friday.

More than 36,600 have been hospitalized with the disease in Maryland throughout the pandemic.

Vaccinations

Vaccinators across the state administered 52,044 COVID-19 immunizations Friday, with 37,565 people receiving their first vaccine and 13,210 completing the two-dose regiments made by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. About 1,269 people got the single-shot immunization from Johnson & Johnson.

It’s the second day in a row the state has seen more than 50,000 doses administered, with an average over the last seven days of 44,228 immunizations dished out daily. More than 2.1 million vaccines have been administered across the state.

Some 767,996 people, or about 12.703% of Maryland’s population, have been fully vaccinated either by receiving the single-dose immunization or completing one of the two-dose schedules.

Vaccines by age:

With vaccine eligibility slated to expand to people 60 and older Tuesday, health department data shows more than 65% of Marylanders who are at least 65 have gotten vaccines.

Vaccines by race:

About 3.8 times as many white people have been fully vaccinated as Black people. The demographic groups account for approximately 58.5% and 31% of the state’s population, respectively, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

Latino people have received about 4.2% of the vaccines administered in Maryland, despite making up roughly 11% of the state’s residents. Just 28,146 Latino or Hispanic people have been fully vaccinated in the state.

Vaccines by county:

Maryland’s smallest jurisdiction, Kent County, continues to pace its peers in the rate of its residents vaccinated. More than 21% of Kent’s roughly 19,000 people have been fully vaccinated.

The only other counties with more than 19% of their populations completely immunized are Talbot and Worcester, both located on the Eastern Shore along with Kent.

Meanwhile, in the suburbs of Washington, the state’s second-largest jurisdiction, Prince George’s County, continues to lag behind the rest. Just over 7% of the county’s approximately 909,000 people have been fully vaccinated.

Not far ahead is Prince George’s neighbor Charles County, which has seen only about 8.7% of its roughly 167,000 residents completely immunized. Both counties are majority Black.

Baltimore, whose vaccination rate for much of the vaccine rollout remained near that of Prince George’s and Charles counties, has seen roughly 10.8% of its majority Black population of about 593,000 complete their immunizations.

Less than 10.7% of Cecil and Somerset counties have been fully vaccinated. Almost 90% of Cecil’s approximately 103,000 residents are white; Somerset’s population of 26,000 is more diverse, with 41.5% identifying as Black.

Testing positivity

The state’s average testing positivity rate, which measures roughly the percentage of coronavirus tests returned positive over the last week, ticked up by 0.11 percentage points, to 4.28%. That marks 10 days of slight increases.

Despite decreasing, Kent County recorded a rate Friday of 8.27% positivity, nearly double the state average. Washington County had the next highest rate, 6.42%.

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