BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott said Friday that he will not lift COVID-19 restrictions as the city continues to see a bump in cases post New Year’s Eve. This means both indoor and outdoor dining will remain closed at city restaurants.
“After reviewing the data around case rate positivity rate hospitalizations and deaths, we are seeing a bump fall on New Year’s Eve,” Scott said Friday. “With that in mind, I’ve made the decision to continue on with the modified phase one guidelines in Baltimore City. We will take the next week to continue to closely monitor the data on a daily basis with our health commissioner and hospital partners.”
Over the last four weeks, coronavirus case numbers have dropped by 22% in Baltimore City. However, the positivity rate remains above 9% statewide and hospitalizations are still high with ICU capacity at 90%.
That’s why Scott said it’s too soon to lift restrictions and he will continue to monitor data. He will address Baltimoreans next Friday.
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) January 8, 2021
“Before the bump from the holidays, Baltimore saw a dramatic decrease in cases, following the new mandate,” he added. “I’ll return to you one week from today on Friday, January 15 with a decision made regarding our current guidelines.”
As of Friday morning, Baltimore reported a total of 33,528 COVID-19 cases. A total of 723 people have died in the city. Hospitalizations were at the highest ever across the state.
“We have not yet seen a dramatic decrease in ICU or acute care admissions related to COVID, since implementing our phase one restrictions,” Dr. Letitia Dzirasa added. “We’re still averaging more than 200 cases per day well — above what we’re comfortable with and above our previous peak this summer — and more importantly, our hospitals are continuing to experience major surges that threaten their ability to continue providing adequate care.”