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Real-time Maine coronavirus updates: Tuesday, May 5

Find developments on the Maine coronavirus, COVID-19 outbreak as we work together to separate facts from fear. Tuesday, May 5, 2020

MAINE, USA — EVERY NUMBER IS A LIFE: Celebrating the life of loved ones during the faceless anonymity of Maine coronavirus COVID fatalities. TONIGHT on NEWS CENTER Maine at 6 p.m.

KEY MAINE CORONAVIRUS FACTS

LATEST CORONAVIRUS UPDATES

TUESDAY, MAY 5

Latest coronavirus stories:

5:30 p.m.

NECN's Dustin Wlodkowski talks with seasonal Maine residents about the state's out-of-state traveler restrictions as the summer season quickly approaches.

2 p.m.

Dr. Nirav Shah provides the Maine CDC daily coronavirus updates. Four additional individuals who had tested positive for COVID-19 have died:

  • A man in his 70s from Kennebec County
  • A woman in her 70s from Kennebec County
  • A man in his 70s from Cumberland County
  • A man in his 80s from Cumberland County 

The new numbers released on Tuesday do not include the new numbers out of the Tyson food plant in Portland. An additional 20 positive test results have come out of the facility Tuesday, in addition to the five reported on Monday. Of Tyson's 391 full-time employees who have been tested, a total of 37 have been confirmed positive with COVID-19. Again, the 25 additional cases that were reported Monday and Tuesday are not yet reflected in the Maine CDC's case totals. Dr. Shah said they are waiting for all the results to come in before adding those results to the totals, so they can keep track of every single person who was tested.

Tyson also offered tests to contractors who had been in the facility; those are the test results that are outstanding. The Maine CDC believes the number is approximately 30 tests, and results are expected later today or tomorrow morning.

Tyson is continuing to idle its operations while they work with the Maine CDC to complete testing.

The Maine CDC's field team of epidemiologists began the contact tracing process based on the positive test results Monday afternoon and are continuing those efforts. 

Dr. Shah gives an update on the current outbreaks at long-term care facilities across the state.

  • Augusta Center for Health and Rehabilitation: There are 48 residents and 28 staff who have tested positive, for a total of 76 cases. Seven deaths have been reported. 
  • Edgewood Rehab and Living Center in Farmington: 10 residents and five staff members have tested positive, and one individual has died. 
  • Falmouth by the Sea: 29 residents and 16 staff for a total of 45 confirmed cases; two individuals have died. 
  • Maine Veterans' Home in Scarborough: 32 cases among residents, 23 cases among staff, and 12 have died. 
  • Tall Pines in Waldo County: 32 residents and 11 staff members have tested positive, and 12 individuals have died. 
  • The Cedars in Portland: 10 residents and five staff members have tested positive and one individual has died. 

The Maine CDC has received the first batch of cotton swabs from FEMA. The shipments will be delivered every week in order to aid the Maine CDC with its mass testing efforts. 

12 p.m.

Maine CDC announced four additional deaths, bringing the state total of Mainers who have tested positive and died to 61.

There are now 1,226 total cases and 741 Mainers have recovered. 1,150 of the 1,226 total cases are confirmed by test, 76 are probable.

187 Mainers have been hospitalized at some point during their COVID-19 illness.

11:30 a.m.

11 a.m.

Dr. Nirav Shah, Director of the Maine CDC, is scheduled to provide an update at 2 p.m. NEWS CENTER Maine will stream it live on-air, as well as on our website, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and mobile app.

MONDAY UPDATES

According to Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah, as of a few days ago, there were roughly 2,900 Mainers tested each week. This includes people tested through the state lab in Augusta, as well as large commercial testing companies like LabCorp. Dr. Shah said right now, the positivity rate is over 5%, meaning for every 100 people tested, about 5 or 6 are positive. Compared to other states, whose positivity rates are 10 or 15%, Maine is doing better, Dr. Shah says. He says he'd like to see Maine's positivity rate around 2%, which is what South Korea's is. To do that, Dr. Shah says testing must increase two or three-fold.

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MAINE CDC BRIEFINGS

Coronavirus, COVID-19 Background 

The official name for the coronavirus is “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes is named “coronavirus disease 2019” or “COVID-19” for short. Coronavirus is a family of viruses, which can infect people and animals. The viruses can cause the common cold or more serious diseases like SARS, MERS, and COVID-19.

The CDC says symptoms of the coronavirus include fever, cough, difficulty breathing, and in some cases sore throat.

The CDC says there are simple steps to take to reduce the possible spread of COVID-19:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Stay home while you're sick and avoid close contact with others

The Maine Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced on Tuesday, March 10 that they would be holding daily coronavirus briefings with director Dr. Nirav Shah to keep the public up to date on the situation in Maine. 

NEWS CENTER Maine YouTube Coronavirus Playlist