Today is Friday. There have now been 2,878 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 on Thursday, leaving the statewide death toll at 102.
So far, 323 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 four on ventilators.
Meanwhile, 2,300 people have fully recovered from the virus, meaning there are 476 active and likely cases in the state, according to the Maine CDC. That’s up from 459 on Wednesday.
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 at 2 p.m. The BDN will livestream the briefing.
— “Having lived under some of the largest coronavirus outbreaks in the country and the restrictions that have come with it, some residents of cities including New York, Boston and Detroit want to find a new place to live — one that’s cheaper and less densely populated, with lower virus counts. A place like Maine. Real estate agents in eastern Maine say they’re seeing growing interest from clients looking to relocate to the area from some of those coronavirus hot spots.” — Emily Burnham, BDN
— “Sharp declines in Maine’s tourism industry that are already cutting into the state’s budget are expected to nearly halve lodging tax revenues between 2019 and 2020, according to a new report released Thursday.” — Lori Valigra, BDN
— “New jobless claims continue to slide from the dizzying heights seen during the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic, a sign that the state’s economy is slowly returning to normal. Mainers submitted 5,900 new jobless claims to the state for the week of June 7 to June 13, according to new data released by the Maine Department of Labor on Thursday morning.” — Christopher Burns, BDN
— “A shortage of qualified staff is the major reason for the bottleneck in Maine’s embattled unemployment system, the top state labor official told lawmakers Thursday. … The system has frustrated many Maine workers as technical issues and clogged phone lines have prevented some workers from receiving benefits, in some cases for months.” — Jessica Piper, BDN
— “For more than a week, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont have been encouraging travel around northern New England as a step toward reviving their tourism-dependent economies that have been suppressed by the pandemic. But where exactly you hail from can make a big difference in your ability to move about freely.” — Fred Bever, Maine Public
— “Businesses in southern Maine are seeing strong demand as they reopen after being closed for months because of COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus. On Wednesday, nail salons, gyms and tattoo parlors were allowed to reopen in York, Cumberland and Androscoggin counties, which have seen the most COVID-19 cases in the state. Restaurants in the counties can also reopen to dine-in customers, and tasting rooms and bars can open for outdoor service.” — Robbie Feinberg, Maine Public
— “The number of deaths per day from the coronavirus in the U.S. has fallen in recent weeks to the lowest level since late March, even as states increasingly reopen for business. But scientists are deeply afraid the trend may be about to reverse itself.” — Carla K. Johnson and Nicky Forster, The Associated Press
— As of early Friday morning, the coronavirus has sickened 2,191,200 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 118,435 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.
— Elsewhere in New England, there have been 7,760 coronavirus deaths in Massachusetts, 4,226 in Connecticut, 885 in Rhode Island, 331 in New Hampshire and 56 in Vermont.