Fewer than 1% of Maryland’s COVID-19 tests in the past week have come back positive, Gov. Larry Hogan’s office said Wednesday.
Montgomery County led the way, at 0.45%, while Prince George’s County, which once had one of the highest positivity rates, was at 1.22% — still above the average, but far lower than earlier this year. The City of Baltimore also showed marked improvement, coming in lower than the average at 0.88%.
Garrett County had the highest rate, at 4.24%. You can see all the county rates on Hogan’s website.
The milestone was one of several announced by Hogan’s office in a statement.
The number of cases per 100,000 people in the state is down to 1.9, the second-lowest in the country, Hogan’s office said. Hospitalizations are at 245, the lowest since March 2020. Meanwhile, 71.2% of Maryland adults have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
D.C. and Virginia have also reported recent low positivity rates. The seven-day positivity rate in Virginia is currently 3%, according to the Virginia Department of Health. D.C. reported Tuesday eight confirmed positive COVID-19 cases.
“Through a combination of vaccination, plus continuing to exercise caution in group gatherings, Maryland has really successfully reduced the risk of developing COVID-19 across the state,” said Dr. Cliff Mitchell, director of the Environmental Health Bureau at the Maryland Department of Health. “The lower the rate of transmission overall, the lower the risk for those people who cannot get vaccinated,” such as children under 12, he added.
That said, he said those who can get vaccinated, but haven’t, should do it for themselves and for others.
“The more people who get vaccinated now, the less likely that one of those variants gets to the point where it can actually pose a risk of recurrence of another surge as we move forward.”
Mitchell told WTOP that although fewer people are getting tested, hospitalizations have not increased, which he takes to mean “the drop in COVID cases is real.”
Mitchell also said that if you’re in a situation where you don’t know the vaccine status of the people you’re around, you should continue to maintain social distance.
WTOP’s Scott Gelman and Ken Duffy contributed to this report.
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