covid

(Aug. 28, 2020) Worcester County saw a slight uptick in coronavirus cases this week, with 51 new cases confirmed, according to the Worcester County Health Department. Last week, 39 new cases were confirmed. 

This brings the county’s total cases since March to 794. 

According to Gov. Larry Hogan, Maryland has reached a seven-day positivity rate of 3.35 percent and a daily positivity rate of 3.21 percent. As of Wednesday, Worcester had the third-highest positivity rate in Maryland at 4.51 percent.  

Meanwhile, Johns Hopkins University has reported a positivity rate of around four percent. Its Covid-19 Testing Insights Initiative relies on data from the Covid Tracking Project, a volunteer tracking organization from The Atlantic. 

There have been 23 coronavirus-related deaths in Worcester, with at least 18 of them at the Berlin Nursing Home. 

Attempts to reach the nursing home for comment since March have not been successful. 

According to Hogan, nearly 40 Maryland-based life science companies are working on vaccines, therapies, testing and research, including Novavax, Emergent BioSolutions, Johns Hopkins University and the University of Maryland School of Medicine, which recently began phase three for a covid-19 vaccine. 

As of Thursday, the state had 106,063 cases. In this area, 299 cases have now been reported in the Berlin and Ocean Pines 21811 zip code area, 277 cases were listed for the Ocean City 21842 zip code, 63 in the Snow Hill 21863 zip code and 103 in the Pocomoke City 21851 zip code.

A zip code must have at least eight cases to be listed.

A total of 643 people have been released from public monitoring. Worcester has conducted 15,382 coronavirus tests. 

As of Wednesday afternoon, there were five patients at Atlantic General Hospital with coronavirus, four in the med/surg unit and one in the intensive care unit, according to Toni Keiser, vice president of public relations. There is also one patient suspected of having coronavirus. 

“So far, our caregivers have cared for six patients who came off a ventilator and are breathing on their own and we have discharged 48 patients with covid-19 who are on their way to recovery,” Keiser said. 

As of Thursday, next door Wicomico had 1,506 cases and Sussex County has 6,225 cases as of Wednesday.

The health department has three free testing sites: Pocomoke City on Walnut Street, at the West Ocean City Park N’ Ride and at the Ocean City convention center on 40th Street. The testing is for adults at least 18 years old. Those who want to get tested should bring ID. 

Testing is available for Worcester County residents only at the Pocomoke location on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The West Ocean City testing site is open Monday and Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Testing at the convention center will be on Sept. 4, 5, 11 and 12, all from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. 

To schedule an appointment in Pocomoke or West Ocean City, call 410-632-1100, ext. 1119.

To schedule an appointment at the Ocean City convention center, call 410-632-1100 and choose option eight.

To treat patients, Atlantic General is asking for plasma donations from coronavirus survivors. This is for a Mayo Clinic study through the Blood Bank of Delmarva.

The first patient transfusion took place on April 24. Donors must have tested positive for the virus and have been symptom-free for 28 days. Those who have been symptom-free for 14 days may also donate if they have tested negative.

When a case is confirmed positive, the health department conducts contact tracing to inform individuals and businesses that may have come into contact with the positive case.

If someone suspects they may have the virus, they should call their primary care provider or the health department. Do not show up unannounced to a medical facility.

The Worcester County Health Department has a hotline Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to determine if a person should be tested. Call 410-632-1100 and select option eight.

For general information on the coronavirus call the health department 24/7 at 410-632-4321 or visit worcesterhealth.org. View updates from Atlantic General at atlanticgeneral.org/patients-visitors/covid-19-updates/.

To track Maryland cases, visit coronavirus.maryland.gov/.

To report a restaurant or bar for not following safety guidelines, call environmental health at 410-352-3234.

To donate plasma, go to delmarvablood.org/cpdonor or call 1-888-825-6638.

**POSITIVITY RATE:

According to the Maryland Department of Health, the positivity rate is a seven-day rolling average of positive results from all tests.

Coronavirus cases in Worcester County July 1 to Aug. 27 timeline: 

July 1 - Three more cases for 289; three more released for 231.

July 2 – One more is released from recovery for a total of 232. 

July 3 - Two more cases are confirmed; two more are released from public monitoring. 

July 4 - One more case is confirmed; one is released from public monitoring. 

July 5 - Four more cases are confirmed; two more are released from public monitoring. 

July 6 - One more case is confirmed; three more are released from public monitoring. 

July 7 - Four more cases are confirmed; five are released from public monitoring. 

July 9 – Ten more cases are confirmed for a total of 311; four are released from public monitoring for 248. 

July 10 – Two people are released from public monitoring. 

July 11 – Three more cases are confirmed. 

July 13 – Eight cases are confirmed; 10 are released from public monitoring; one person dies for a total of 18. 

July 14 – 10 cases are confirmed; four are released from public monitoring. 

July 15 – Seven cases are confirmed for a total of 339; two are released from public monitoring for a total of 266. 

July 16 – 16 cases are confirmed for a total of 355; three are released from public monitoring for a total of 269. 

July 17 – 11 more cases are confirmed; four are released from public monitoring. 

July 20 – 52 more cases are confirmed; seven are released from public monitoring. 

July 21 – 11 more cases are confirmed; nine are released from public monitoring for a total of 289. 

July 22 – Seven more cases are confirmed for 435. 

July 23 – Five more cases are confirmed. 

July 24 – Twenty-eight cases are confirmed; 31 are released from public monitoring. 

July 27 – Thirty-eight cases are confirmed; 12 are released from public monitoring. 

July 28 – Thirty-five cases are released from public monitoring. 

July 29 – Two more cases are diagnosed. 

July 30 – Ten more cases are confirmed for a total of 518; ten more cases are released from public monitoring for a total of 377.  

July 31 – 32 cases are confirmed; 14 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 3 – 61 cases are confirmed; 47 cases are released from public monitoring; one person dies for a total of 19 deaths. 

Aug. 4 – 28 cases are confirmed for 639; 10 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 5 – 17 cases are confirmed; 64 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 6 –  Eight cases are confirmed for 664 total; eight cases are released from public monitoring for 506 total. 

Aug. 7 – 11 cases are confirmed; five cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 11 – 22 cases are confirmed; 35 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 12 – Seven cases are confirmed for a total of 704; 15 cases are released from public monitoring for a total of 561. 

Aug. 17 – 27 cases are confirmed; 12 are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 18 – Five cases are confirmed; 23 are released from public monitoring; one person dies for a total of 20. 

Aug. 19 – One case is confirmed; five are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 20 – Six cases are confirmed for a total of 743; one is released from public monitoring for a total of 602; two people die for a total of 22. 

Aug. 24 – 19 more cases are confirmed; 19 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 25 – Four more cases are confirmed; 12 cases are released from public monitoring. 

Aug. 26 – 19 more cases are confirmed; four cases are released from public monitoring; one person dies for a total of 23. 

Aug. 27 – Nine more cases are confirmed for a total of 794; seven cases are released from public monitoring for a total of 643. 

*Worcester’s first case was confirmed on March 19

Elizabeth covers Worcester County issues for Ocean City Today. In 2018, she graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa with a bachelor of arts. After graduation, Elizabeth spent a year with Lutheran Volunteer Corps in Wilmington, Delaware.

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