The number of hospital admissions with COVID-19 in Maine increased by nine Sunday to 291 patients, but it is still 33 percent lower than the peak of the pandemic a month ago.
Of those currently in the hospital, 67 are in critical care and 30 are in respirator, according to data tracked by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The number of intensive care patients is about half the record set on 19 December.
Hospital admissions are also on a steady downward trend across the country. According to the US CDC, the seven-day daily average of 91,650 patients has fallen 37 percent from the omicron peak of 146,634 set on January 20th. The current average is still close to the top of the Delta rise in early September.
Maine health officials do not provide case updates on Sundays, but the daily number of cases is no longer an accurate representation of the current transmission due to a backlog and due to the increased number of home tests. Other measurements, however, show a steep decline in the number of new cases.
Over the past seven days, the Maine CDC has received an average of 731 positive tests each day. Not all of these will be considered new cases because there are sometimes duplicates, but it is less than a third of the daily average this time last month.
Cases across the United States have also fallen sharply and are now averaging around 175,000 a day, equivalent to what the country saw in mid-December before the omicron wave took hold. It is still a higher average than almost any other point in the pandemic, but the trend is positive.
Deaths, meanwhile, have not yet dropped significantly and are still averaging more than 2,200 each day. Since the pandemic began, at least 915,425 people have died with COVID-19, including 1,828 residents of Maine.
Maine’s death rate – 135 per. 100,000 people – is the fourth lowest of any state and less than half the national rate of 275 per capita. 100,000 people. Mississippi has the highest rate, 388 deaths per. 100,000. If Maine’s rate were that high, there would be 5,200 deaths here.
In terms of vaccinations, the rate has slowed significantly in 2022, but the state still administers between 1,500 and 2,000 doses each day. In total, 982,468 people received both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the one-dose Johnson & Johnson version. That’s 73.1 percent of all residents. In addition, 570,319, or 42.4 percent, have received booster doses.
Yet there are still large gaps in vaccinations between rural inland and southern and coastal counties. Research has made it clear that the risk of hospitalization or death is significantly greater for people who have not been vaccinated.