Maryland's Frederick County Public Schools will suspend small group instruction and winter sports practices as the county tracks heightened COVID-19 levels.
The school district changes will take effect Monday, Jan. 4, officials announced Sunday, citing “worsening health metrics.”
Coronavirus data for the county shows a climb in cases in November and December, and a seven-day positivity rate of 11.2%. The statewide rate is 9.15%.
Nearly 11,900 people in the county have been diagnosed with the virus, with 216 new cases reported in the past day. One-hundred-ninety people have died of the virus, including two more people in the past day.
Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday he has seen “some little glimmer of hope” after 1.5 million vaccine doses were administered in the previous 72 hours, a strong increase in vaccinations. He said that brings the total to about 4 million.
But he acknowledged the U.S. is well short of its goal of having 20 million people vaccinated by the end of 2020. He said about 13 million doses have been distributed to clinics, hospitals and other places where they will be administered.
“There have been a couple of glitches. That’s understandable,” Fauci said. “We are not where we want to be, there’s no doubt about that.”
He expressed optimism that the momentum will pick up by mid-January and that ultimately the U.S. will be vaccinating 1 million people a day, as Biden has vowed.
“The goal of vaccinating 100 million people in the first 100 days is a realistic goal,” he said.
What the Data Shows
D.C. has now had nearly 30,000 COVID-19 cases, up 255 from the previous day. Two more people died, and eight more people were in District hospitals. Nearly 800 D.C. residents have died of the virus.
Maryland has had more than 28,500 sickened by the virus, up 2,148 from the previous day. Another 27 people died. The statewide positivity rate is now 9.15%. More than 5,800 Maryland residents have died of the virus.
Virginia now has 30,3881 people who have been diagnosed with the virus, and 4,516 who have died.
Local Coronavirus Headlines
- Virginia reported another record day for new coronavirus infections, and that surge is putting even more pressure on hospitals in the commonwealth already pushed to the brink.
- Among the industries hit hardest by the pandemic has been performance venues like theaters and nightclubs, but help is on the way after President Donald Trump signed the new relief bill.
- New figures from the Virginia Department of Corrections show that two inmates and one staff member who tested positive for the coronavirus have died in recent days.
- The high level of coronavirus cases is putting stress on Northern Virginia hospitals — and the health care professionals who work there.
- The stress of the pandemic is a grind. A data analysis from the American Dental Association shows a surge in cases of teeth grinding, clenching and cracking during the COVID-19 crisis. The increases are striking and potentially costly and painful for sufferers.
- A professor is using the trust Black Americans have in barbers to make them more comfortable with taking the COVID-19 vaccine.
- A rapid antigen test might seem like a great idea when you're in a hurry and don't have time to wait a few days for results, but those tests are really designed for people with COVID-19 symptoms and in asymptomatic patients can deliver false positive results.
- Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced measures to boost the number of available health care workers and plan for more hospital beds.
- COVID-19 numbers continue to paint a dire picture for Black Americans, and there is an ongoing effort in the Black community to increase testing.
- A judge upheld Montgomery County, Maryland's ban on indoor dining.
- D.C. has suspended indoor dining until 5 a.m. on Jan. 15, Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a press release.
- Virginia instituted a curfew and a stricter mask mandate.
- Maryland tightened restrictions on businesses, bars and restaurants.
- All Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are closed because of rising COVID-19 cases.
- Hours before some Fairfax County students were set to return to in-person learning, the school district said that they needed to delay the plan.
- Courts throughout Maryland remain partially shut down due to the pandemic.
- Prince George's County tightened restrictions and required masks to be worn outdoors.
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.