BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore city officials are concerned about coronavirus and a possible twindemic after the city has seen an uptick in the daily COVID-19 case count.

As of Wednesday, the state reported 16,584 COVID-19 cases in the city and 478 deaths.

City Health Commissioner Letitia Dzirasa said coronavirus cases in the city are growing and the daily case count is up 30% from last month.

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“Our current number of new cases per 100,000 people is 12.5 up from 9.6 about a month prior and above the state’s overall average,” Dzirasa said. “While our positivity rate continues to go down, we are here to remind everyone to continue to see COVID-19 testing at either one of our mobile testing sites across the city or at a clinical site testing is vital in the following cases.”

She also said some people with coronavirus may not be showing symptoms and can unknowingly infect others.

Although city officials are discouraging residents from participating in traditional trick-or-treating this Halloween, they said if people are going to participate in door-to-door trick-or-treating they need to be safe about it.

“I would like to once again remind residents about harm reduction in an active pandemic. First, traditional trick or treating indoor Halloween parties and indoor haunted houses are not advisable this year, and present an elevated risk of disease transmission,” Dzirasa said. “Second, wearing a costume mask does not count as wearing a face covering to limit the spread of disease. I would not advise wearing both. Instead, wear your normal protective face covering over your nose and mouth or decorate your protective face covering for Halloween.”

City officials also reminded residents to get their flu shot.

“We also know that the threat of the twindemic — a severe flu season coinciding with the surge and novel coronavirus cases — presents a real risk and straining are hospital care systems, while a safe and effective vaccine for the coronavirus is still being developed,” Dzirasa said.

Officials would like to see 70% of all city residents getting their flu vaccine.

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.

CBS Baltimore Staff

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