The Belfast Farmers’ Market moved outdoors in mid March this year, earlier than normal, because of the coronavirus. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

101 new cases and one new death were reported Saturday in Maine amid a statewide surge in virus transmission. There are 1,004 active confirmed and “probable” cases in the state, the highest number of active cases yet recorded in Maine.

Saturday’s report brings the total number of coronavirus cases in Maine to 6,668. Of those, 5,907 have been confirmed positive, while 761 were classified as “probable cases,” according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The agency revised Friday’s cumulative total to 6,567, down from 6,570, meaning there was an increase of 120 over the previous day’s report, state data show. As the Maine CDC continues to investigate previously reported cases, some are determined to have not been the coronavirus, or coronavirus cases not involving Mainers. Those are removed from the state’s cumulative total. The Bangor Daily News reports on the number of new daily cases reported to the Maine CDC, rather than the increase of daily cumulative cases.

New cases were reported in Androscoggin (5), Cumberland (32), Franklin (2), Kennebec (3), Knox (5), Lincoln (1), Oxford (9), Penobscot (5), Sagadahoc (2), Somerset (10), Washington (8) and York (15) counties, state data show. Information about where an additional six cases were reported wasn’t immediately available.

Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, warned Thursday that Maine is seeing “forceful and widespread” community transmission of the coronavirus throughout the state amid the present spike in cases. That spike could continue for some time, he said.

There are two criteria for establishing community transmission: at least 10 confirmed cases and that at least 25 percent of those are not connected to either known cases or travel.

The seven-day average for new coronavirus cases is 78.3, up from 38.4 a week ago and up from 30.6 a month ago. That surpasses Friday’s and Thursday’s seven-day averages of and 70.1 and 58.9, respectively. Before this week, the previous record high was recorded in late May, when it topped out at 52.6, according to Maine CDC data.

Saturday’s report comes on the heels of the largest single-day jump in new coronavirus cases — 119 — seen in Maine since the pandemic reached here in March. That surpassed a record-high 94 on Thursday and the previous high logged on Wednesday, when 87 cases were reported, Maine CDC data show. Maine has seen seven consecutive days with new case reports above 50.

The current spike in coronavirus cases mirrors the rise seen in the spring during the earliest weeks of the pandemic, but this time around, it has become more widely dispersed, with surges in rural counties and among the young.

On Thursday, Gov. Janet Mills again extended her civil state of emergency for another 30 days amid this latest coronavirus surge, urging Mainers to “take every precaution to slow its spread.” It’s the eighth time she extended that order, which now expires — unless she renews it again — Nov. 27.

One new death was reported Saturday, a woman in her 90s from York County. That raises the statewide death toll to 147. Nearly all deaths have been in Mainers over age 60.

So far, 486 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Of those, 17 people are currently hospitalized, with five in critical care and one on a ventilator.

Meanwhile, 22 more people have recovered from the coronavirus, bringing total recoveries to 5,517. That means there are 1,004 active confirmed and “probable” cases in the state, which is up from 929 on Friday. It’s the highest number of active cases yet recorded in Maine.

A majority of the cases — 3,930 — have been in Mainers under age 50, while more cases have been reported in women than men, according to the Maine CDC.

As of Friday, there had been 626,890 negative test results out of 634,829 overall. About 1.2 percent of all tests have come back positive, Maine CDC data show.

The coronavirus has hit hardest in Cumberland County, where 2,621 cases have been reported and where the bulk of virus deaths — 70 — have been concentrated. Other cases have been reported in Androscoggin (873), Aroostook (65), Franklin (82), Hancock (73), Kennebec (353), Knox (93), Lincoln (65), Oxford (178), Penobscot (310), Piscataquis (10), Sagadahoc (88), Somerset (193), Waldo (154), Washington (69) and York (1,435) counties.

As of Saturday morning, the coronavirus had sickened 9,048,247 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 229,710 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine.

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