Maryland is reporting 2,910 new cases of COVID-19, the largest number of daily new cases since the pandemic began. Our case rate has increased to 31.7 per 100K, and total hospitalizations are now at their highest level since May.
Yesterday, Maryland set a new record-high volume of tests (43,969). One of the most important things you can do to protect your friends and family is to get tested for COVID-19.
AFSCME Council 3 President Patrick Moran released the following statement on a COVID-19 outbreak in Garrett County:
“Our members are putting their safety at risk just to maintain minimum staffing levels at Backbone Youth Center in Garrett County. I am deeply disturbed by the reports coming out of the Department of Juvenile Services and I urge Governor Hogan and Secretary Sam Abed to re-open Garrett Children’s Facility (formerly Savage Mountain) to establish a quarantine unit as well as provide the necessary personal protective equipment to all staff. It is unacceptable for staff to be working in these facilities without N95 masks. At this point, because of the Department’s dangerous understaffing and lack of protocol, many of the staff and youth awaiting test results have not been properly quarantining awaiting their results. In effect, risking continued transmission of COVID-19 in this facility to the youth and staff. In Garrett and Allegany County, this can only worsen the outbreak which has already filled Western Maryland hospitals to capacity. The lack of action is only worsening the outbreak and risking unnecessary death of the youth and our members.
Staff at Backbone are reporting 10 new positive cases in the last 24 hours including the superintendent and assistant superintendent of the facility. There are currently no supervisors on site at the camp. Currently, there are just six frontline staff on campus in charge of 14 youth. All youth are scheduled to be tested today while over twenty staff between all shifts are awaiting results. Staff are already double shifting due to the lack of relief from DJS.
Staff are now being required to double up on their masks, wear gowns and face shields but have not been provided N95 masks despite working in the congregate care facilities. This is not safe. In the Department of Juvenile Services, AFSCME represents almost 2,000 frontline staff in case management, custody positions and transportation. Backbone Youth Center has 32 AFSCME bargaining unit members assigned to the facility at this time.”
In Mineral County there are 749 total positive case, 302 are active, 10 are probable 442 have recovered and there are now 5 total deaths
It is with the utmost sadness that the Mineral County Health Department is reporting that it has received official notification of the 5thCOVID-19related death in Mineral County. Our community member was an85-year-old female and had been hospitalized. During her isolation and hospitalization, the Health Department worked to identify any potential persons who may have had close contact with the individual, including family members, friends, co-workers and health care professionals. The Mineral County Health Department would like to extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends
The Mineral County Health Department has received confirmation of an employee testing positive for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)at the Dawnview Center nursing home located in Fort Ashby, WV(Outbreak #900).The Health Department is working to identify any potential persons who may have had close contact with the individual, including family members, friends, residents and health care professionals. Because of the ease of spread in a long-term care setting and the severity of illness that occurs in residents with COVID-19, a single case of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 in a long-term care facility (LTCF) is defined as an outbreak.
The Mineral County Health Department has received confirmation of an employee testing positive for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) at Wilma’s Diner located in Fort Ashby, WV. The Health Department is working to identify any potential persons who may have had close contact with the individuals, including family members, friends, and additional staff. Additionally, the facility has been closed for environmental cleaning and will reopen following a reinspection by the Health Department. The time frame in question is as follows :Saturday, November 14thIf you visited the establishment during the dates listed above, you may have come in contact with a positive case. The purpose of this alert is preventative as well as informative. If you develop symptoms, have concerns, or feel you need to be tested, you may contact the Mineral County Health Department at (304) 788-1321or your local provider. Additionally, freeCOVID-19 community testing is available this week at the Mineral County Vo Tech and the Fort Ashby Fairgrounds. Please visit our Facebook Page for testing times
There were four (4) new cases in Grant County. There are many contacts to these positive cases that are quarantined and are being monitored.
Two of those diagnosed were in Grant County Schools on Tuesday. School and Local Health personnel are contact tracing. Contacts are those that have been within 6 ft for 15 minutes or more to the person diagnosed up to 2 days prior to symptoms or diagnosis of COVID.
Everyone must do their part to prevent the continued spread of this virus. Social Distance by always maintaining 6 feet distance from everyone not in your household, avoid crowds, WEAR that mask, and practice good hand hygiene.
285 Total COVID Cases
• 223 Confirmed Positive COVID cases
• 62 Probable COVID cases (Probable cases are those that have a positive test from a rapid antigen test).
• 212 Total Recovered
• 60 Active Cases. Four are hospitalized.
• 13 Deaths, of these: 9 Deaths listed as COVID related (6 from GRCC).
Call Grant Memorial Hospital (304) 257 1026 and press 5 to speak to an ER nurse or Grove Street Health Center at 304-257-2451 or Mt. Storm Health Center to help determine if testing is indicated and instructions how to proceed if you develop symptoms, (loss of taste or smell, fever, cough, muscle aches, cough, shortness of breath, headache or diarrhea). Remain isolated from others until you receive your test result and are cleared to discontinue isolation.
COVID-19 case counts continue to go up across the region and throughout the country, making it harder and harder for contact tracers to keep up with the surge.
“Because of the large number of positive cases across the region, if you test positive for COVID-19 it is important to immediately isolate yourself and remain in isolation for 10 days,” said Garrett County Health Officer Bob Stephens. “Contact tracers are having a hard time keeping up with the volume of cases. If you test positive, do your part to reduce the spread by calling your close contacts and asking them to quarantine for 14 days from their last contact with you. We all need to take personal responsibility to help keep others safe.”
If you know you are a close contact to a confirmed COVID-19 case immediately begin quarantining. You can get tested 3-5 days after you are exposed, whether or not you have symptoms. If you develop symptoms, get tested at that time. Symptoms can develop anywhere from 2-14 days after exposure.
Free COVID-19 drive-thru testing is still being offered at the Allegany County Fairgrounds on Mondays from 2 to 7 p.m. and on Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. No appointment, insurance or doctor’s order is required.
The next community drive-through testing event in Garrett County will be held at the Health Department office in Oakland on this Friday, November 20, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Please follow the signs and watch for traffic personnel for direction. Be prepared for a possible wait depending on how many persons take advantage of this event. Test could be either a nasal or a throat swab, depending on age of the patient and the availability of kits. There is no out-of-pocket cost to get a test at the site, and appointments and doctors’ orders are not required.
*FREE COMMUNITY TESTING NEXT WEEK**
Friday Hampshire Memorial Hospital from 9a-1p
Free COVID-19 testing in Hardy County this week. Please
bring an ID and a parent or guardian for any children on site. This
testing is available to anyone.
November and 20th. 8am – 12pm Hardy County Ambulance Authority 17940 SR 55 Baker, WV
1pm – 4pm National Guard Armory 167 Freedom Way Moorefield, WV
On Thursday the 19th, the Armory testing site will stay open until 5pm
for those that need a later schedule.
For a complete state testing schedule, see
Free COVID-19 community testing is available this week at the Mineral County Vo Tech and the Fort Ashby Fairgrounds. Please visit our Facebook Page for testing times
Visit garretthealth.org for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information
The Maryland Department of Health (MDH) today released holiday guidance for Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, urging families to be extremely cautious with holiday travel and celebrations as infection numbers continue to spike in Maryland and the surrounding region.
Maryland is currently experiencing a significant increase in cases and hospitalizations compared to the summer, with more than 174,733 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of today and more than 1,192 patients currently hospitalized. Since the onset of the pandemic, 4,220 Marylanders have died from the virus.
“We are all tired of this pandemic and desperately want it to be over, but now is not the time to let our guard down,” said MDH Secretary Robert R. Neall. “While we tend to feel safe around people we know — family, friends and neighbors — the reality is we are experiencing a spike in infections. We have to maintain the habits that help keep us all safe — wear your mask, wash your hands, maintain social distance and isolate when sick.”
The MDH Frequently Asked Questions About Holiday Safety are available on the CovidLINK website. These guidelines align with holiday recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), recommending that Marylanders limit large indoor gatherings with people from different households, avoid unessential travel, and consider alternatives to in-person celebrations.
“Holidays are a time to get together with loved ones, but this year festivities bring a real danger of community spread of COVID-19,” said Acting Deputy Secretary of Public Health Dr. Jinlene Chan. “We must be extra cautious and look out for each other, which may mean celebrating remotely or gathering with just a few friends and family members from our immediate households. Avoid large gatherings and unnecessary travel in the coming months. This pandemic is far from over.”
This week, U.S. Congressman David Trone (MD-06) convened calls with elected officials and medical leaders throughout Western Maryland to discuss the recent spikes in COVID-19 cases and the steps we can take to mitigate the spread of the virus.
Trone has been working with local Western Maryland elected officials and medical leaders since March to determine the local needs of each county. Trone will continue to stay in touch with health officials and hospital leaders in the next coming days.
Trone has spoken with the following officials from each county in Western Maryland:
Jeff Cline, President of the Washington County Board of Commissioners
Emily Keller, Mayor-elect of Hagerstown
Scott Nicewarner, City Administrator for the City of Hagerstown
Dave Caporale, County Commissioner
Jason Bennett, County Administrator
Ray Morriss, Mayor of Cumberland
Elizabeth Stahlman, City Administrator for the City of Frostburg
Kevin Null, County Administrator
Mark Boucot, Garrett Regional Medical Center CEO
“I heard from Western Maryland leaders this week about how they are dealing with the worst spike in COVID-19 cases that we’ve ever seen since the start of this pandemic,” said Congressman Trone. “Funds are running dry from the CARES money passed by Congress in March, and there will be serious consequences for first responders, small businesses, COVID testing capabilities, and broadband access, all of which could harm the health and economy of Western Marylanders for a long time to come. It’s outrageous that Congress and the Administration can’t come together to pass another relief package that our communities desperately need.”
Throughout the pandemic Trone has made it a top priority to listen to the needs of local leaders and communities and get resources out directly to constituents. He has held webinars on volunteerism, small business and nonprofit resources, how to safeguard yourself from COVID-19 scams, and mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak and hosted five telephone town halls on resources available to Marylanders during the pandemic. Trone’s 130-page resource guide has up-to-date information and includes national, state, and local resources for constituents.
Earlier this week Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed an executive order that would allow more than 1,000 eligible inmates to be released early in an attempt at slowing the spread of COVID-19. According to Mark Vernarelli with Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services they are in the process of identifying those incarcerated individuals who are within 120 days of release and otherwise meet the criteria stipulated by the Order. He says they are in the early stages of this, and as such don’t know the impact on any region or prison just yet. Click here to read the full executive order https://governor.maryland.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/Prisoner-Release-RENEWAL-11.17.20.pdf z$�?.m39�