Maryland’s COVID positivity rate dips below 4% as 1.9 million are fully vaccinated

For the first time in four days, Maryland health officials reported more than 1,000 coronavirus cases Wednesday along with declines in hospitalizations and testing positivity.

Meanwhile, more than 1.9 million residents have now been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to health department data.


The state, encouraged by the generally positive trends in data and vaccinations, aligned itself with recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance by lifting masking requirements while outdoors, Gov. Larry Hogan announced Wednesday.

Hogan said the “fastest way to put the pandemic behind us once and for all” is for as many people as possible to get vaccinated.


“If you have not been vaccinated you should continue to be cautious and you should continue to wear masks, especially where distancing is not possible,” Hogan continued.

Here’s a look at the Maryland Department of Health’s key pandemic indicators:


With 1,002 new infections reported Wednesday, Maryland has now recorded 445,493 coronavirus cases since March 2020.


Twenty more people were reported dead from the coronavirus Wednesday, bringing the state’s tally of pandemic-related deaths to 8,521.


The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 declined by 37 to 1,093 Wednesday. Of those, 272 patients required intensive care.

At least 1,000 COVID-19 patients have been hospitalized due to the disease since March 29.

Testing positivity

Maryland’s average testing positivity rate fell below 4% Wednesday to 3.89%, down 0.15 percentage points from the day before. The rate, which measures the average share of tests returned positive over the last week, has declined since April 19.

The rate has been below the World Health Organization’s recommended 5% threshold for reopening for five consecutive days.


Some 28,436 COVID-19 tests were reported completed in the last 24 hours, with more than 9.6 million nasal swabs tested for the disease over the duration of the public health crisis.


The health department reported 55,151 new vaccinationsWednesday, including 24,913 first doses of the two-dose vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. About 29,610 second doses were injected, while 628 people received the Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine.

About 31.5% of Maryland’s population has been fully vaccinated either by finishing a two-dose schedule or by receiving a single-shot immunization, health department data shows. Almost 43% of the population has received at least one vaccine dose.

Over the last seven days, Maryland has averaged 59,937 vaccinations reported daily.

Vaccines by age

More than 80% of Marylanders 65 and older have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, according to health department data. About 63% of residents between 50 and 64 years old, 46% of the population aged 18 to 49 and 29% of 16- and 17-year-olds have received at least one dose.


Only one vaccine, Pfizer-BioNTech’s product, is available to the youngest group. None has yet been authorized for younger children.

Vaccines by race

About 2.77 times more white people have been fully vaccinated than Black people in Maryland, though those demographics account for 58.5% and 31% of the state’s population. A month ago, about 3.4 times as many white people had received vaccines as Black people.

Latino people, who make up about 11% of Marylanders, have received approximately 6% of all vaccine doses administered where the recipients ethnicity was recorded. That demographic group had received about 4% of all vaccines where the ethnicity was known a month ago.

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Vaccines by county

Located on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Talbot County is the only state jurisdiction where more than 40% of population has been fully vaccinated. About 42.5% of Talbot’s approximately 37,000 residents have completed their immunizations.


About 38.5% of the 52,000 people in Worcester County, also on the Shore, have been fully vaccinated. Howard and Kent counties are the only other localities in the state where more than 35% of people have finished with their immunizations.

The counties of Somerset (21.3%), Cecil (22.9%), Prince George’s (23.15%), Queen’s Anne’s (24%) and Charles (24.96%) are the only state jurisdictions where less than 25% of the respective populations have been fully vaccinated.

With 909,000 residents in the suburbs of Washington, Prince George’s is the second most populous locality in the state. It is majority minority. Charles has about 163,000 people and is majority Black.

Somerset, meanwhile, has about 27,000 people and is 54% white and 41.5% Black.

Cecil County, population 103,000, and Queen Anne’s, boasting about 50,000 residents, are both almost 90% white.