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10 COVID-19 cases reported in Carroll County, but health department warns data may be incomplete

Ten new COVID-19 cases among Carroll County community members were reported Wednesday, though the health department cautioned that the day’s data might be incomplete.

Spokesperson Maggie Kunz said Wednesday that the database the Carroll County Health Department uses for positive case reports was down for a “significant” time, so some new cases might have been missed in the day’s total.

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The county’s case total saw a net increase of nine because one case reported last week was reclassified as an out-of-county case, Kunz said. That lowers last week’s community case total to 88, more than double the prior week’s 37 and not far behind the record of 110, set the week of July 26.

This week has seen 29 cases thus far among community members outside of congregate living facilities, such as nursing homes and group homes.

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Cases in Carroll’s congregate living facilities remained at 678. These facilities still account for most of the county’s deaths attributed to COVID-19 — 127 of 144 — but few cases have originated from them in the past couple of months.

The health department now considers one of those facilities, Springfield Hospital Center in Sykesville, to no longer have an active outbreak, meaning at least 14 days have passed since the onset of the most recent case there.

According to health department data, Carroll has seen 1,789 total cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, as of Wednesday.

Carroll’s positivity rate, the rate at which tests of county residents return positive reported as a seven-day rolling average, is 2.87% as of Tuesday. The rate, which is based on data from the Maryland Department of Health, was 2.95% Saturday, the highest it has been since Aug. 2.

Maryland reports the statewide rate as of Tuesday is 3.7%, though Johns Hopkins University considers it to be 6.1%, meaning of the individuals tested during the past week, 6.1% received a positive result for the first time.

Six intensive care unit beds are being used at Carroll Hospital for COVID-19 patients as of Tuesday. The figure has ranged in the past two weeks from 11 on Aug. 25 — above the threshold of 10 that the health department says indicates high strain on the hospital system — and two, from Sept. 2-4.

As of Wednesday, 931 COVID-19 patients have been released from isolation, up by six from Tuesday, according to the health department. A total of 112 community members have been hospitalized with the disease so far.

McDaniel College in Westminster has had eight confirmed COVID-19 tests among its campus population, two of which have been over the past seven days. A total of 1,444 tests have been administered.

Of the 1,111 community members to test positive in Carroll, 22 are younger than 10 years old; 128 are in the 10-19 range; 241 are 20-29 years old; 135 are 30-39; 164 are 40-49; 232 are 50-59; 118 are 60-69; 40 are 70-79; 30 are 80-89; and one is in their 90s. Women have accounted for 574 of the positive tests, and men 537.

Westminster has the most reported cases, with 604 across two ZIP codes, followed by Sykesville/Eldersburg with 479, Mount Airy with 221, Manchester with 128, Hampstead with 80, Finksburg with 77, Taneytown with 64, New Windsor with 39, Keymar and Marriottsville with 28 each, Woodbine with 18 and Union Bridge with 17. Data is not released in ZIP codes with seven cases or fewer.

Anyone who thinks they or a family member might be showing coronavirus symptoms can call the hotline between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at 410-876-4848, or contact their doctor. After hours, callers may leave a message or call 211. People with emergencies should continue to call 911.

Baltimore Sun reporter Nathan Ruiz contributed to this article.

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