This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), depicts the exterior structure of the coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19. Image courtesy of CDC.

The number of Marylanders currently hospitalized due to coronavirus is continuing to climb, reaching a recent high of 863 on Thursday.

That is the highest number of COVID-19 hospitalizations that Maryland has seen since the state recorded 902 hospitalized COVID-19 patients on June 11.

In response to rising coronavirus metrics, Gov. Larry Hogan on Tuesday announced a series of actions to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Maryland, including ordering bars and restaurants to lower their capacity to 50%, strongly discouraging indoor gatherings of 25 people or more, encouraging businesses to allow teleworking, and other steps.

Hogan’s “Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery” lists several “stop signs” that would require the state to slow, stop or reverse the easing of coronavirus restrictions that were previously instated.

Those signs include “an unexpected increase in hospitalizations” or “sustained increase” in intensive care cases, indications that Marylanders are not abiding by physical distancing guidelines, and significant community transmission outbreaks where contact tracers cannot determine the route of the spread.

The recovery plan also says that a sustained increase in cases over a period of five or more days “may require the reimposition of some prior restrictions.”

Intensive care cases have increased for six consecutive days, and have trended upwards for at least two weeks.

Meanwhile, the seven-day average number of daily new cases has reached 1,180. The average has risen every day since reaching 609 on Oct. 23, and has trended upwards since late September, according to The Baltimore Sun‘s data tracker.

Hogan will provide coronavirus updates during a press conference at 4 p.m. Thursday.

Maryland hospitalized 704 people for coronavirus over the past seven days, an increase of about 52% from 464 hospitalizations during the previous week.

Maryland’s current hospitalizations increased by 275, from 588 patients on Nov. 5 to 863 patients today.

Of those Marylanders currently hospitalized with COVID-19, 664 are in acute care and 199 are in intensive care.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Maryland has hospitalized a total of 18,139 people due to COVID-19.

Maryland has recorded 9,936 positive coronavirus cases since last Thursday, Nov. 5, and 72,026 negative results in that same period.

Over the last seven days, an average of 5.65% of the state’s COVID-19 tests have come back positive. That is up 1.44 percentage points from the seven-day average rate of 4.21% last Thursday.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, at least 159,900 Marylanders have tested positive for coronavirus, while 1,912,085 have tested negative as of Thursday morning, according to the Maryland Department of Health’s COVID-19 Case Map Dashboard.

The state has completed 3,761,513 coronavirus tests to date, with 209,182 test results reported in the past seven days.

A total of 4,112 Marylanders have died from COVID-19, with 77 additional deaths reported since last Thursday.

There are also 149 deaths suspected to be related to coronavirus.

As of 10 a.m. Thursday, there have been 35,336 confirmed cases in Prince George’s County (+1,515 since last Thursday); 28,146 in Montgomery County (+1,369); 23,392 in Baltimore County (+1,597); 20,006 in Baltimore City (+1,396); 13,595 in Anne Arundel County (+942); 6,581 in Howard County (+449); 5,373 in Frederick County (+343); 4,329 in Harford County (+456); 3,592 in Charles County (+268); 2,787 in Washington County (+308); 2,776 in Wicomico County (+148); 2,592 in Carroll County (+228); 1,651 in St. Mary’s County (+122); 1,526 in Cecil County (+99); 1,313 in Calvert County (+70); 1,311 in Worcester County (+53); 1,273 in Allegany County (+350); 886 in Dorchester County (+47); 870 in Queen Anne’s County (+48); 786 in Caroline County (+14); 685 in Talbot County (+17); 517 in Somerset County (+41); 366 in Kent County (+13); and 211 in Garrett County (+43), according to the dashboard.

Of Maryland’s confirmed cases, 6,389 are people age 9 or younger (+438 since last Thursday); 14,223 are people ages 10-19 (+1,018); 30,492 are people ages 20-29 (+2,063); 28,718 are people ages 30-39 (+1,682); 25,249 are people ages 40-49 (+1,495); 23,341 are people ages 50-59 (+1,524); 15,642 are people ages 60-69 (+976); 9,015 are people ages 70-79 (+452); and 6,831 are people age 80 or older (+288).

Maryland has identified 84,128 of the confirmed COVID-19 patients as female and 75,772 as male–which increased by 5,214 and 4,722, respectively, since last Thursday.

Of the Marylanders who have tested positive for COVID-19, 48,766 are Black (+2,707 since last Thursday), 33,033 are Hispanic (+1,600), 44,380 are white (+3,834), 3,101 are Asian (+221), 7,436 are another race (+442), and data is not available for the remaining 23,184 (+1,132).

Nationwide, there have been at least 10,415,779 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States (+923,180 since last Thursday), including at least 241,907 deaths (+8,130) and 3,997,175 recoveries (+253,648). The U.S. has conducted more than 156.6 million coronavirus tests to date as of 10 a.m. Thursday, according to a real-time dashboard created by Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering.

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Marcus Dieterle

Marcus Dieterle is the managing editor of Baltimore Fishbowl. He returned to Baltimore in 2020 after working as the deputy editor of the Cecil Whig newspaper in Elkton, Md. He can be reached at marcus@baltimorefishbowl.com...