Lowest daily coronavirus increase in a week in Montgomery County

Montgomery County records lowest daily COVID-19 increase in a week

County has had 15,780 cases and 722 confirmed deaths

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Montgomery County’s total number of coronavirus cases increased 0.34% on Monday, its lowest daily increase in the past week. The county added 53 on Monday, bringing the total number of cases it has had to 15,780.

The county’s COVID-19 caseload has increased by less than 1% for six consecutive days. That trend has been consistent for the past month. July 7 was the only day in that time when the daily caseload exceeded 1%.

Montgomery County also added one confirmed death on Monday, for a new total of 722, according to figures from the Maryland Department of Health.

There have been 38 “probable” deaths from the virus. “Probable” deaths have the coronavirus listed as the cause on death certificates but haven’t been confirmed by laboratory tests.

Montgomery County has been using 10 benchmarks as a guideline for deciding when to reopen and loosen restrictions. Data on the guidelines are updated by 2 p.m. every day.

As of Sunday afternoon, Montgomery County was showing that eight benchmarks had been met or shown “substantial progress”:
● Number of new COVID-19 related deaths: 2 (three-day average); 12 declining days
● COVID-19 related hospitalizations: 84 (three-day average); at least 14 declining days
● COVID-19 related intensive care unit hospitalizations: 30 (three-day average); at least 14 declining days
● Acute care bed utilization rate: 72% (three-day average); the county’s goal of 70% or less has been met for 12 of 14 days
● ICU bed utilization rate: 52% (three-day average); the county’s goal of 80% or less has been met for at least 14 days
● Percentage of ventilators in use: 27% (three-day average); the county’s goal of 70% or less has been met for 14 at least days
● Test positivity: 4% (three-day average); at least 14 declining days
● Test administered: 2,093 (three-day average); the county is reporting that it has 4.6% testing capacity in the last 30 days; the county’s goal is 5%

The two benchmarks that haven’t been met are:
● Number of new confirmed cases: 75 (three-day average); 6 declining days
● Number of COVID-19 related emergency room patients: 5 (three-day average); 10 declining days

Montgomery County also reports its progress in other areas that are not considered benchmarks, but are additional guidelines.

The county reports having met criteria in:
● leveraging health care networks to provide testing to symptomatic and asymptomatic people
● making testing options accessible across the county
● flattening or decreasing test positivity
● continuing partnerships with state officials to provide large-scale contact tracing efforts

The county reports making progress toward:
● establishing testing networks to offer “high throughput testing”
● compiling and using data by race, gender, age and geographic location to inform policy decisions
● the ability to disseminate information that addresses the impact of COVID-19 on different demographics

Statewide on Monday, there were 73,527 COVID-19 cases and 3,194 confirmed deaths. There have been 818,993 tests administered and a test positivity rate of 4.63%.

Dan Schere can be reached at daniel.schere@bethesdamagazine.com

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