Half of Massachusetts’ 14 counties at the moment are thought of excessive threat for neighborhood transmission of COVID-19, in keeping with the newest information from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention.
The most recent information launched Thursday exhibits that Barnstable, Berkshire, Franklin, Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Worcester counties are all listed as excessive threat. Dukes, Essex, Hampden, Hampshire, Nantucket and Plymouth counties are medium threat, with solely Bristol County remaining within the low threat class.
Only one week in the past, no Massachusetts counties have been listed as excessive threat. Seven have been listed as medium threat and the remaining have been thought of low threat.
Massachusetts’ COVID metrics, tracked on the Division of Public Well being’s interactive coronavirus dashboard, have declined for the reason that omicron surge, however case counts and hospitalizations are beginning to improve as soon as once more.
State well being officers reported 4,376 new COVID-19 instances Thursday, greater than 1,000 greater than the every day complete of two,985 on Wednesday, together with 13 new deaths. The state’s seven-day common positivity price elevated to six.17% Thursday, in comparison with 5.79% on Wednesday. COVID instances have additionally been rising quickly in Massachusetts faculties in latest weeks.
Greater than 10,000 constructive COVID-19 instances in Massachusetts have been linked again to the classroom over the past week.
COVID ranges in wastewater, as reported by the Massachusetts Water Sources Authority’s monitoring system have been barely down initially of final week within the Boston space, although it wasn’t sufficient to persuade prime Boston medical doctors that we have been clear from the spring surge. As of samples by Wednesday of this week, these ranges have been on the rise once more.
What about the remainder of New England?
In New Hampshire, Grafton County is designated as excessive threat, whereas Belknap, Carroll, Hillsborough, Rockingham, Strafford and Sullivan counties are medium threat. The state’s different three counties are thought of low threat.
In Vermont, all however two counties are thought of excessive threat. Essex and Windham counties stay low threat.
Maine went from one excessive threat county to eight this week, together with Aroostook, Cumberland, Hancock, Knox, Lincoln, Penobscot, Piscatiquis and Sagadahoc. Medium threat counties embrace Franklin, Kennebec, Oxford, Somerset, York, Waldo and Washington. Androscoggin County is the one one that is still low threat.
Every week in the past, all however one Connecticut county was low threat. However that has additionally modified dramatically. Now, Hartford, Middlesex and New Haven counties are categorized as excessive threat and the remainder of the state is listed as medium threat.
All of Rhode Island jumped from low threat to medium threat since final week.
In response to New York Instances information monitoring coronavirus, Maine and Rhode Island are at present tied because the states with the best variety of COVID-19 instances within the nation per capita.
As the USA hits a million COVID-19 deaths, Maine is on the prime of nationwide lists for brand spanking new COVID-19 instances and hospitalizations per capita.
Residents in counties with a excessive stage of neighborhood unfold are urged to put on masks indoors in public and on public transportation, to remain updated with vaccines and to get examined if they’ve signs, in keeping with the CDC.
Residents in areas with a medium stage of neighborhood unfold are inspired to put on a masks if they’ve signs, a constructive take a look at or publicity to somebody with COVID-19. Anybody at excessive threat for extreme sickness must also contemplate sporting a masks indoors in public and taking extra precautions, the CDC says.
The vast majority of instances in New England proper now are nonetheless being attributed to the “stealth” omicron variant BA.2, though instances of the BA.2.12.1 subvariant are on the rise. Will increase in instances in South Africa and different nations are elevating considerations that the U.S. may quickly expertise one other COVID-19 wave.
Regardless of the rising instances right here, Massachusetts and the opposite New England states have but to take any steps to deliver again masks mandates or every other COVID-related restrictions that have been relaxed following January’s omicron-fueled surge.