Maine reported 390 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the highest one-day total since early May.
There were no additional deaths. The seven-day average of daily new cases jumped to 203.4 on Thursday, compared to 173.1 a week ago and 60.9 a month ago. Since the pandemic began, Maine has recorded 74,699 cases of COVID-19, and 926 deaths.
Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in a media briefing Tuesday that he had expected high COVID-19 case counts this week because his staff had to work through 1,700 positive test results from early in the week to determine how many were new cases. Testing volume has increased dramatically in recent weeks as the delta variant has become the most dominant strain, from 258 tests per 100,000 people two weeks ago to 333 tests per 100,000 currently.
“Delta is not just the predominant variant in Maine, it is the variant in Maine,” Shah said on Tuesday. “This is a concern. Delta is more contagious, and may lead to more severe illness, which may lead to higher rates of death.”
Despite the high numbers, Cumberland County, the state’s most populous and most highly-vaccinated, only reported two new cases on Thursday. Penobscot County recorded the most new cases, with 90, while York County logged 82 new cases, followed by Aroostook County with 51 cases.
On the vaccination front, Maine reported 838,199 people have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 on Thursday, representing 62.3 percent of the state’s 1.3 million population.
This story will be updated.