ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — There are 5,529 cases of coronavirus in Maryland, according to numbers released Wednesday morning, and 124 people have died.

That’s an increase of 1,158 cases since Tuesday. There were 21 deaths overnight.

Gov. Larry Hogan said at least 30% of the increase was due to a backlog of tests from March.

“An increase in new infections is just one of the reasons for today’s significant jump in new cases. This is also due to our ongoing efforts to ramp up testing in Maryland, with more private labs coming onboard and the expansion of commercial lab capacity,” Hogan tweeted. “I want to once again remind all Marylanders to continue to stay home and stay informed. We are all in this together, and we will get through this together.”

“We are seeing commercial labs begin to clear their backlog of tests. More than 30% of the new cases reported today are for testing that was completed in March,” Hogan added.

Among the 124 people who have died in the state is 27-year-old Leilani Jordan, who worked as a greeter at a Giant on Campus Way South in Largo.

She was hospitalized on March 26 and died on April 1. Her brother advises all Marylanders to realize how serious this pandemic has become.

“It happened so fast,” Cedrick Jordan said. “Do not take this lightly. This is not a joke. It’s severe.”

Howard County Executive Calvin Ball urged people to socially distance as he announced another death, a resident in her 80s.

He also announced an immediate hiring freeze in the county, saying that action was necessary because of the economic hit of closures across the nation.

In Baltimore City, Mayor Jack Young asked people not to personally attend religious services during this Holy Week—and instead to do so online.

“It will be hard to celebrate these holidays without family and friends, but staying home will help save the lives of our loved ones,“ Mayor Young said.

 

Maryland lawmakers got a briefing from several members of Gov. Hogan’s cabinet Wednesday. You can listen to that full briefing here.

Secretary of Health Robert Neall told them the state has 1,178 ventilators with more than twice that on order. He said there is a shortage of drugs used to intubate those on ventilators but Maryland is ordering more and looking for substitutes.

“We’re hoping to have enough ventilators in everyone’s hands when the time comes so that we won’t be getting panicked calls about the shortage of ventilators,“ Secretary Neall said.

Dr. Karen Salmon, Maryland’s Superintendent of Schools, says she is preparing in case distance learning continues into into the fall, but no decision has been made yet about whether to re-open schools, which remain closed through April 24th.

“We are not sure that this is going to be something that we’re not going to revisit in the fall or in the winter so I am really focusing much of our resources on the expansion in the accountability wrapped around online learning,” Dr. Salmon said.

“The question we get asked the most is ‘When is this going to end?’ …We didn’t want to just throw up our hands at this point because we wanted to see what was going to happen with our interventions with social distancing…. We’re going to have to make a decision certainly well before the 24th so so that folks know what’s coming ahead.”

The good news: nearly 33,000 people tested negative for coronavirus and of the 1,210 hospitalized, 365 were released from isolation.

As for the genders of the patients, 2,955 are women and 2,574 are men.

CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE: 

Here’s a breakdown of cases (and deaths) by county:

Allegany – 6
Anne Arundel – 466 (11)
Baltimore City – 571 (10)
Baltimore County – 866 (13)
Calvert – 56 (2)
Caroline – 11
Carroll – 186  (18)
Cecil – 49 (1)
Charles – 164 (2)
Dorchester – 4
Frederick – 199 (4)
Garrett – 5
Harford – 86
Howard – 274 (3)
Kent – 9
Montgomery – 1,088 (26)
Prince George’s – 1,310 (32)
Queen Anne’s – 16
St. Mary’s – 62
Somerset – 4
Talbot – 10 (1)
Washington – 57
Wicomico – 20 (1)
Worcester – 10

Here’s a breakdown of cases by age across the state:

0-9: 27
10-19: 109
20-29: 625
30-39: 968
40-49: 1,015
50-59: 1,135
60-69: 833
70-79: 550
80+: 267

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

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