Coronavirus in DC, Maryland, Virginia: What to Know on Feb. 19

Here's what to know about the coronavirus data, resources and reopenings across the D.C. area

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From canceled appointments to shipping delays, winter weather is also impacting vaccinations across the county and in the Washington, D.C., area,

Both Maryland and Virginia say storms are delaying expected shipments of critical doses, after some vaccine clinics such as the mass site at Six Flags America were forced to reschedule appointments.

The Virginia Health Department says more than 100,000 doses will not arrive on time.

“Even if the roads are clear in Virginia, the fulfillment of orders and the movement of these vaccine and ancillary supplies may be delayed in other parts of the country,” a news release said.

Maryland shared a notice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saying that shipments were canceled or slowed down on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

“This may have a significant impact on providers’ ability to hold clinics as scheduled,” a Maryland Department of Health press release said.

The state is expects to eventually receive a big backlog of doses when shipping resumes.

Northern Virginia Bureau Chief Julie Carey reports on more confusion over the state's new COVID-19 vaccination registration site.

Despite the issues, Maryland surpassed 1 million coronavirus vaccine doses administered, Gov. Larry Hogan announced.

Maryland has given out more than 94% of doses received from the federal government.

The Six Flags America mass vaccination site opened later due to continuing winter weather Friday, but anyone scheduled after 10 a.m. should arrive on time.

Prince George’s County had to cancel all first dose appointments for Friday through Monday because of weather-driven delays in shipments.

This week's winter weather caused delays in vaccine shipments nationwide. As News 4's Darcy Spencer reports, that's forced local health officials to cancel some vaccine appointments.

Thousands of vaccines didn’t arrive as expected.

The county has also made accommodations for seniors so they won't be standing out in the cold as they wait in line. They’re instructed to wait in their cars if they arrive early and they can get a ride in a golf cart to get them inside the facility quickly and safely.

For residents wanting to know when their first dose appointments can be rescheduled, the Prince George's officials say, "as soon as possible." 

University of Maryland Fights Outbreak

The University of Maryland is implementing six new safety measures to keep students safe from COVID-19 amid a “significant and concerning” rise in cases.

The restrictions include things like limiting indoor and outdoor student gatherings to five people, heavily enforcing mask-wearing and social distancing.

The university plans to do additional testing for those living in places with outbreaks and take “enhanced health precautions” in residence halls and fraternity or sorority houses.

“If there is no significant decrease in cases over the coming days, we will take further action,” UMD said.

What the Data Shows

The region reported its lowest 24-hour increase in deaths in over a month Friday. Despite this positive news, the District is fast approaching 1,000 lives lost due to the virus since the start of the pandemic.

D.C. recorded 160 new cases on Friday. One 70-year-old D.C. resident lost his life due to COVID-19. Maryland had 1,008 new cases and 16 deaths. Virginia reported 1,557 new infections and 11 deaths.

D.C.’s seven-day average increased by 3 cases to 113. Maryland and Virginia’s seven-day averages are down to 857 and 1,525, respectively. Hospitalizations are down across the board. In Virginia, hospitalizations decreased by more than 1,000 over the past month. Maryland hospitalizations have decreased by more than 800 and D.C. hospitalizations are down by more than 60 cases compared to one month ago.

Vaccination Portals by County

As vaccinations in our region ramp up, here's a look at local portals residents can use to sign up for vaccination appointments or sign up to receive alerts.

Local Coronavirus Headlines

Reopening Tracker

Although COVID-19 treatments have improved and a vaccine is on the way, even a mild case of the virus can cause long-term complications — including the possibility of erectile dysfunction. Infectious disease expert Dr. Dena Grayson joined LX News with a warning not to let our guards down as we wait for a vaccine.

How to Stay Safe

Anyone can get COVID-19. Here are three simple ways the CDC says you can lower your risk: 

  • Wear a snug-fitting mask that covers your nose and mouth. 
  • Avoid being indoors with people who are not members of your household. The more people you are in contact with, the more likely you are to be exposed to COVID-19. If you are indoors with people you don’t live with, stay at least six feet apart and keep your mask on. 
  • Wash your hands often, especially after you have been in a public place.
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