Covid-19 continues surging in Maine, stressing contact tracing, hospitals

Happy Thanksgiving. Hopefully you’re all spending it, as I am, in small gatherings because Covid-19 is exploding across the United States and until late January it doesn’t appear there will be any cogent federal response, Hang tight.

Trends aren’t good here in Maine, even though we still have the 49th lowest prevalence in the country after Hawaii. As I reported in the past few days for the Portland Press Herald, last week we hit new all time highs in hospitalizations, with medical centers in the eastern and central part of the state bearing the brunt of the burden. Intensive Care Unit capacity is rapidly becoming a front and center concern, two or three weeks ahead of whatever post-Thanksgiving boost the disease receives here. In yesterday’s paper I reported on how the Maine CDC is already having to scale back the scope of contact tracing efforts, though they remain much more robust here than in most other states, definitely to include neighboring New Hampshire, which has officially given up on containment. 

As of yesterday, Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor had hit 27 inpatients, quadruple their peak during the spring surge. Should have updated hospitalization tallies for you tomorrow, which I’ll post here as an update.

As I wrote Nov. 16, models show the trends here in Maine will get worse over the next few weeks.

Stay safe, wash your hands, and wear your masks.