Today is Thursday. There have been 2,637 confirmed and likely cases of the new coronavirus in all of Maine’s counties since the outbreak began here in March, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
No new deaths were reported Wednesday, leaving the statewide death toll at 100.
So far, 303 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Of those, 27 people are currently hospitalized, with 10 in critical care and five on ventilators.
Meanwhile, 2,023 people have fully recovered from the virus, meaning there are 514 active and likely cases in the state, according to the Maine CDC. That’s unchanged from Tuesday. Active cases of the virus have been trending down in recent days, falling from 714 on May 24, Maine CDC data show.
Here’s a roundup of the latest news about the coronavirus and its impact in Maine.
— The Maine CDC will provide an update on the coronavirus this afternoon. The BDN will livestream the briefing.
— “Gov. Janet Mills has extended her 30-day coronavirus civil state of emergency proclamation for the third time since the pandemic began, warning on Wednesday that COVID-19 is very much a threat despite the relaxing of some virus-inspired restrictions. The second extension, which was due to end Thursday, gives Mills the ability to suspend the enforcement of laws, establish emergency reserves of certain products and allows the state to access federal funding to mitigate the outbreak.” — Nick Sambides Jr., BDN
— “Several indicators of the spread of the coronavirus suggest that the deadly virus has declined in Maine over the past few weeks, although it is still too early to say whether recent large public gatherings might lead to an uptick in cases. The number of new coronavirus cases declined over the past week, as did the share of tests coming back positive. Hospitalizations also continued to drop, with the number of patients currently hospitalized for coronavirus hitting the lowest level since the state started releasing data in mid-April.” — Jessica Piper, BDN
— “A quintessential part of Maine’s small-town charm is undoubtedly the annual town meetings that are held in municipalities across the state, where townspeople can interact directly with their local officials and have a say on where their tax dollars are going. … But with the COVID-19 pandemic causing state-ordered restrictions on large gatherings, towns with June town meetings have two options for how to proceed.” — Lauren Abbate, BDN
— “State employees are pushing for more input in how Maine government gradually returns them to their offices as the state’s phased reopening continues. About 85 percent of non-public safety employees were working from home as of early April, when the coronavirus pandemic had caused much of the state to shut down, according to the Department of Administrative and Financial Services. But some state departments are gradually reopening offices this month.” — Caitlin Andrews, BDN
— “A Freeport restaurant owner has opened his business for dine-in service in defiance of Gov. Janet Mills’ order prohibiting that in three counties amid the coronavirus pandemic. Petrillo’s in Freeport opened for both dine-in and outdoor seating last Thursday. Dominic Petrillo, owner and chef of Petrillo’s, said four complaints have been filed with the state in less than a week, but he doesn’t regret his decision. Petrillo said his business will not survive only on curbside and outdoor service.” — WGME
— “Bangor High School catcher Isaac Bushway and Hampden Academy center fielder Sam Economy were ready to seek a measure of atonement in 2020. Mackenzie Lambert of Bangor wanted an opportunity to earn a Class A outdoor track state championship to accompany the Rams’ indoor title. Brewer High shortstop Kenzie Dore sought a third straight Class B softball state crown and Diana Harriman of John Bapst in Bangor was excited to reap the dividends of her hard work on the tennis court. Instead, all five seniors were denied those opportunities when the COVID-19 pandemic forced schools to implement remote learning and canceled the spring sports season. Though frustrating, the experience has given them a greater appreciation for the value of competing in high school sports.” — Larry Mahoney, BDN
— As of early Thursday morning, the coronavirus has sickened 2,000,464 people in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as caused 112,924 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.
— Elsewhere in New England, there have been 7,454 coronavirus deaths in Massachusetts, 4,120 in Connecticut, 812 in Rhode Island, 301 in New Hampshire and 55 in Vermont.