Maine's number of reported cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is now at 698, an increase of 65 more cases since Thursday.

That's a large jump in the number of cases which Maine CDC Director Nirav Shah noted that is attributable to long term care facilities like retirement communities.

48 total cases are reported at these long term care facilities, 13 of which are staff and 35 are residents.

32 cases of COVID-19 have been reported at the Maine Veterans' Home in Scarborough, 26 residents and 6 staff members, most showing no symptoms.

The Augusta Center For Health and Rehabilitation has 55 cases, 41 residents and 14 staff.

Dr. Shah put those numbers into context by saying that once facilities like these have a reported case, they test all staff and residents and in public health, "when you look for things, you find them."

The large number of cases does not mean there are a large number of people critically ill.

Statewide, 273 people have recovered, and no new deaths were reported, keeping the total number at 19.

124 patients have had to be hospitalized at some point. 61 are currently hospitalized and 22 of those are in intensive care. 9 patients are on ventilators.

Cumberland County has the most positive cases of COVID-19 and community transmission is occurring there along with York county. All counties except Piscataquis county have recorded at least one case of COVID-19.

Investigations have been ongoing in other counties to determine if community transmission is occurring there, and today Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah announced that investigation has determined that community transmission is now occurring in Penobscot county as well.

Here's a breakdown of the numbers by county from the Maine CDC.

Maine CDC
Maine CDC

Governor Janet Mills has ordered all Mainers to stay home unless you work for an essential business or need to do an essential activity. The executive order remains in effect until April 30. Find out what that means for you by clicking or tapping here.

If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, including a runny nose, sore throat, dry cough, fever and in severe cases, difficulty breathing, the Maine CDC says you should call your doctor before going in so that they can prepare for your arrival.

Shah says that right now, our only vaccine against the COVID-19 is physical distancing. It is the key to flattening out the curve of the spread of the coronavirus, a point Dr Shah stressed is vitally important for Mainers to practice. A low curve means that the virus is spreading slowly which gives doctors more time and resources to treat more people. The higher the curve, the most people get sick at once and medical facilities get overwhelmed. Shah says that right now, our only vaccine against the COVID-19 is physical distancing.

The Maine CDC continues to update with new information daily. Keep checking on our mobile app or website to get the latest.

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