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Maryland governor says COVID-19 increases are ‘frightening’

  • Social distancing guidelines are displayed outside the Trader Joe’s grocery story in Annapolis, Md., Wednesday, March 25, 2020, as Jessica Izumi moves carts. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

    Social distancing guidelines are displayed outside the Trader Joe’s grocery story in Annapolis, Md., Wednesday, March 25, 2020, as Jessica Izumi moves carts. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

ANNAPOLIS, Md. >> A COVID-19 outbreak at a Maryland nursing home contributed to an increase in coronavirus cases today across the state that the governor described as “frightening.”

Maryland health officials reported that overall cases around the state rose to about 1,200 today, representing an increase of more than 200 cases. The tally includes 66 positive cases at a nursing home in Carroll County that were reported late Saturday night.

The state has also reported 10 deaths statewide and that nearly 300 people have been hospitalized around the state since the outbreak began.

In an interview on Fox News Sunday, Gov. Larry Hogan said that “in spite of the fact that we’ve taken some of the most aggressive steps in the country on social distancing … It’s continuing to grow at really kind of frightening paces.”

Hogan said that a lack of ventilators, tests and other supplies remains a problem.

“But the big pinch point that everybody is dealing with, both at the federal and all the states, is this lack of — of the equipment that we need. It’s a lack of tests, a lack of ventilators, a lack of masks and swabs and protective equipment. You know, this is a serious issue across the country that we’re all grappling with,” he said on the Fox show.

On Saturday night, the Carroll County Health Department said in a statement that 66 residents at the Peasant View Nursing Home in Mount Airy had tested positive and 11 were hospitalized. The county health officials said that the nursing home is following strict isolation guidelines for those testing positive and is screening staff. The county health department also has been able to provide staff with additional protective equipment. Hogan said state and local health officials were working to protect staff and residents.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

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