New Covid Cases Skyrocket in Maryland and Anne Arundel County
The first 2 waves, in May and August, are beginning to appear more like ripples compared to the huge wave now forming.
Most experts feel this surge could potentially be catastrophic as Maryland enters the cold and flu season as well as the the holiday season. When you add in Covid fatigue and economic concerns, the US has the recipe for exceeding capacity of all health care.
Maryland’s initial surge peaked at 1,031 and the 2nd peak was only 890 (2 week average). As of November 18th, Maryland has had 2 weeks of 1,000+ cases per day. Today, Maryland Department of Health reported our 3rd day over 2,000.
Anne Arundel County daily cases have also exploded in the last 2 weeks.
The initial 2 surges peaked no higher than 75.
On November 18th, Anne Arundel’s 2 week average was 178 and Sunday was nearly 200.
“We are in a war right now and the virus is winning.”–Governor Larry Hogan.
Hogan Issues New Restrictions
As a result of this unprecedented rise, Governor Larry Hogan pleaded with Marylanders to unite and work together to slow the spread of COVID. Hogan also issued additional restrictions details of which can be found here.
“This is not the flu. It’s not fake news. It’s not going to magically disappear just because we’re all tired of it and we want our normal lives back,” Hogan warned Tuesday.
What About the Covid Vaccines?
It’s important to recognize that the vaccines are still a long way off. Although both Moderna and Pfizer have announced initial success, the number of people it has been tested on are very small.
Moderna’s vaccine was reported to be 94.5% effective in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine. But this preliminary Phase 1 study only involved 45 people. And only 15 people received one of the 3 different doses (Click for NEJM study).
Pfizer’s vaccine as found to be 90% effective. Pfizer’s first set of results was released on the company’s website found here.
Although both companies hope to start vaccinating in mid to late December, they only expect to have 15-20 million doses. For the vaccine to be effective, most of the 330 million people in the US will need it. Both companies report the vaccine will require 2 doses.
It’s also important to remember that all 7.8 billion people on Earth will also by jockeying for the vaccine supply. Experts do not expect that vaccine to be available for the general public anytime before the spring of 2021 at the very earliest.
What Can You and Your Family Do to Prevent Covid
If you do these things, you can significantly lower your risk of getting Covid:
- Wear a 3 layer cloth mask (or better) when in public. Please note, masks are not effective unless they cover your mouth and your nose!
- Stay 6 feet apart from people.
- Wash hands (for at least 20 seconds) or use hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizers immediately kill 99% of the virus.
- Avoid social gatherings or being out in public unless absolutely necessary.
The above measures are highly effective. Studies have found that face masks can reduce your risk of getting Covid by 70%. Social distancing is also very effective. Studies suggest that being 6 feet away from an infected person lowers your risk as much as 97%.
What About The Holidays?
Most experts agree that, unfortunately, it may not be possible to control the spread of Covid without another stay-at-home order. In fact, many parts in the US that previously would not even consider these measures are now issuing increasingly rigid orders as their hospitals overflow.
“Thanksgiving and Christmas without all of your family is unimaginable and awful. But we are telling our patients, and our families, we would rather see you next year and for many years to come than for something to happen causing the death of a loved one,” advises Dr. Michael Freedman of Evolve Direct Primary Care in Annapolis.
He added, “We will be coming out of this in the next 6 months. The Greatest Generation came of age during the Spanish Influenza of 1918-1919, survived 6 years of World War II, and witnessed their kids go off to the 10 year Vietnam War. We can make it 6 more months. It’s just time to dig deep and come out of this proud and strong.”
“Your family and your friends are counting on you. Your neighbors are counting on you. And your fellow Marylanders are counting on you to stay ‘Maryland Strong.’”–Governor Larry Hogan
For more information, about Coronavirus (COVID), click here.
If you have been experiencing fever, headache, dry cough or any worrisome symptoms, please CALL your doctor immediately.