BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland reported 717 new COVID-19 cases and 22 new deaths, according to state health department data released Wednesday morning.

The percentage of people testing positive decreased slightly by 0.08% to 3.36%.

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Doctors say the new cases are fueled by dangerous strains targeting the unvaccinated. During an August press conference, Gov. Larry Hogan said the Delta variant, a strain that is reportedly two to four times more contagious than the original virus strain, accounts for nearly every new confirmed case in Maryland.

“The vaccines are without a doubt our single most effective tool to mitigate the threat of COVID-19 and the surging Delta variant, and Maryland’s vaccination rate continues to outpace the nation,” Hogan said.

More than 3.96 million Maryland adults are fully vaccinated.

Hospitalizations increased by 18 to 703. Of those hospitalized, 516 remain in acute care and 178 are in the ICU.

Since the pandemic began, there were 551,807 total confirmed cases and 10,504 deaths.

There are 3,970,057 Marylanders fully vaccinated. The state has administered 8,218,913 doses. Of those, 4,023,879 are first doses with 4,062 administered in the past 24 hours. They have given out 3,661,853 second doses, 3,768 in the last day.

“Thanks to the millions of people who have rolled up their sleeves, Maryland continues to be one of the most vaccinated states in America,” said Governor Hogan of the eight million milestone mark. “We have achieved these numbers with strong public health outreach, innovative lottery and scholarship promotions, and a relentless focus on equity.”

The state began to administer the Johnson & Johnson vaccine again in April after the CDC and FDA lifted their pause on the vaccine due to a rare blood clot found in some women.

A total of 308,204 Marylanders have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 220 in the last day.

On September 24, after the CDC granted final approval for Pfizer’s booster, Gov. Hogan announced the immediate authorization of the booster shot for Marylanders who have received their second Pfizer shot at least six months ago. Hogan had already approved use for vulnerable populations in early September.

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The state has administered 224,977 additional or booster vaccine doses, 7,979 in the last day.

The state reported 85.3% of all adults in Maryland have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

“Thanks to the millions of Marylanders who have rolled up their sleeves over the past 10 months, Maryland is one of the most vaccinated states in America,” said Governor Hogan. “We have achieved these numbers with strong public health outreach, innovative lottery and scholarship promotions, and a relentless focus on equity.”

In August, the state launched a post-vaccination infections dashboard that is updated every Wednesday. There have been 27,420 total cases among fully vaccinated Marylanders as of last Wednesday, October 20.

Less than 0.76% of fully vaccinated Marylanders have later tested positive.

Of those cases, 1,995 vaccinated Marylanders were hospitalized, representing 11.3% of all Covid cases hospitalized in the state. 261 fully vaccinated Marylanders have died, representing 11.8% of lab-confirmed Covid deaths in the state.

CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES: 

Here’s a breakdown of the numbers:

By County

County Cases Deaths
Allegany 9,598 (242) 2*
Anne Arundel 52,290 (741) 15*
Baltimore 75,906 (1,781) 42*
Baltimore City 60,951 (1,300) 28*
Calvert 5,587 (100) 1*
Caroline 3,105 (47) 0*
Carroll 11,595 (279) 7*
Cecil 8,641 (173) 2*
Charles 14,308 (251) 2*
Dorchester 4,048 (77) 1*
Frederick 23,886 (363) 10*
Garrett 3,002 (77) 1*
Harford 20,369 (342) 8*
Howard 22,466 (268) 7*
Kent 1,684 (53) 3*
Montgomery 81,691 (1,648) 51*
Prince George’s 98,991 (1,669) 43*
Queen Anne’s 3,815 (69) 1*
St. Mary’s 9,642 (159) 1*
Somerset 3,300 (52) 0*
Talbot 2,790 (51) 0*
Washington 19,057 (382) 5*
Wicomico 10,859 (216) 0*
Worcester 4,943 (116) 1*
Data not available 0 (70) 0*

By Age Range and Gender

Age/Gender Cases Deaths
0-9 37,933 (4) 0*
10-19 61,005 (7) 1*
20-29 99,322 (54) 1*
30-39 94,692 (138) 7*
40-49 80,498 (361) 5*
50-59 79,125 (966) 34*
60-69 53,051 (1,816) 29*
70-79 29,180 (2,651) 47*
80+ 17,718 (4,527) 107*
Data not available 0 (2) 0*
Female 289,350 (5,051) 112*
Male 263,174 (5,475) 119*
Unknown Gender 0 (0) 0*
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By Race and Ethnicity

Race/Ethnicity Cases Deaths
African-American (NH) 173,508 (3,753) 86*
Asian (NH) 13,364 (342) 11*
White (NH) 209,248 (5,385) 114*
Hispanic 78,056 (869) 19*
Other (NH) 25,529 (114) 1*
Data not available 52,819 (63) 0*

CBS Baltimore Staff