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COVID-19 In Maryland: 14 Deaths Reported Saturday As Hospitalizations Continue To Fall

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Maryland reported more than 900 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday as hospitalizations continued to decline, according to the latest data from the Maryland Department of Health.

Maryland added 947 COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours, bringing the total of confirmed cases statewide to 1,001,509 since the pandemic began. A small fraction of those are cases of reinfection dating back to September.

Despite exceeding 1 million cases, Maryland's case rate has fallen significantly since last month's peak, and the state has the country's second lowest case rate.

Hospitalizations fell by 20 over the past 24 hours, bringing the number of COVID-19 patients to 439. That figure marks the fewest hospitalizations Maryland has seen since August and an 86% drop from last month's peak of nearly 3,500 patients.

The seven-day positivity rate for COVID-19 rose slightly to 2.78%, which represents a 0.01% increase compared to Friday and a 90% drop from last month's high.

With Maryland's health metrics showing significant improvement in recent weeks, state and local officials have begun rolling back safety measures that were put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19.

On Thursday, Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott announced that the city would lift its indoor mask mandate on March 1, though protocols will remain in place for students in Baltimore City Public Schools.

The Maryland State Board of Education voted Tuesday to rescind its mask mandate for public schools, leaving it up to local school districts.

Baltimore County School announced they will be going mask optional starting on Tuesday March 1st.

The state continues to encourage residents to get vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19, even offering a $2 million lottery as an incentive for boosters.

The statewide death toll now stands at 13,842, up 14 since Friday.

Earlier this month, Maryland emerged from a 30-day state of emergency issued in response to elevated hospitalizations that pushed many hospitals to capacity levels.

Yet healthcare leaders say hospitals still face nursing shortages.

Of Maryland's COVID-19 patients, 348 are adults in acute care and 80 are adults in intensive care. Six children are in acute care and five are in the ICU.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 95% of Maryland's adult population has gotten at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 90.2% of Marylanders ages 5 and up have gotten a shot.

There are 4,480,358 Marylanders fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Maryland has administered 11,347,735 million doses of the vaccine.

Of those, 4,706,582 are first doses, 2,952 in the last 24 hours. Another 4,145,690 are second doses, 3,120 in the last day. A total of 334,668 Marylanders have gotten the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 122 in the last day.

The state has administered 2,160,795 boosters, 5,457 over the past 24 hours.

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