‘There is still significant virus circulating here’: White House coronavirus coordinator says DC area is a hot spot

As some areas in D.C., Maryland and Virginia reopen or plan to in the next couple of weeks, the White House coronavirus response coordinator said the area is the highest in the nation in percentage of positive test results.

In a press conference on Friday, Dr. Deborah Birx said that D.C., Maryland and Virginia rank as the top three areas for positive test result rates.

The highest metro area in the country for positive rates is D.C., which includes Northern Virginia and Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland. This is followed by Baltimore, Chicago and Minneapolis.

“There is still significant virus circulating here,” Birx said from the White House on Friday.

“Even though Washington has remained closed, L.A. has remained closed, Chicago has remained closed, we still see these ongoing cases,” Birx said. “I’ve asked the CDC to look into where these cases are coming from and what do we need to do to prevent them in the future.”

She added that 42 states have returned positive test rate of less than 10 percent on a rolling seven-day average.

More Coronavirus news

Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

These results come at a time when the D.C. area is making plans to reopen.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said that the District could reopen by May 29. Maryland started phasing in reopening without Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. Prince George’s will begin reopening June 1; Montgomery County currently doesn’t have a date, but County Executive Marc Elrich has said they’re leaning towards loosening up some restrictions in the next couple of weeks.

Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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