Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam addressed his health in a news conference Tuesday for the first time since his COVID-19 diagnosis in September.
Northam and first lady Pam Northam have been cleared to return to normal work. The governor said he had zero contact with people for 18 days while he isolated and the entirety of his staff quarantined, he said.
None of his staffers have tested positive for the virus, Northam said.
“When that test comes back positive, it is frightening – this is a dangerous virus,” he said.
Northam said it was “disheartening” to see others treat the virus “cavalierly.”
The Fauquier County School Board expects 71% of its students back in classrooms as part of a hybrid learning plan starting Nov. 9. The details were shared after the school board met Monday night.
They'll be in class two days a week and will do the rest online. The remaining 29% of students requested to stay fully virtual.
A parent group opposed to the reopening plan says they believe the school is rushing its decision.
They say moving to a hybrid model this early could result in even less live instruction because teachers will have to make a massive shift in their lesson plans, months ahead of schedule.
Virginia's coronavirus metrics were unavailable for most of Tuesday morning due to an outage affecting the Commonwealth Network, officials say.
"The entire Commonwealth Network is affected by this outage, and VITA is working with Verizon to address it," Maria Reppas, Director of Communications at the Virginia Health Department wrote in an email.
The outage affected other sites including Virginia's voter registration site and the Virginia Employment Commission site.
A 25-year-old man with no underlying conditions became the first confirmed case of a U.S. patient becoming reinfected with COVID-19, and the fifth known case reported worldwide.
The man, who lives in Nevada, has contracted the coronavirus on two separate occasions, a study in the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal showed, and became seriously ill following the second infection.
Here's where we stand as the coronavirus continues to change our lives in D.C., Maryland and Virginia.
What the Data Shows
Virginia surpassed 150,000 cases of coronavirus as of Monday. The seven-day average of new cases also indicates an uptick in the spread of COVID-19 over the past two weeks.
Virginia’s seven-day positivity rate, however, has been trending downward, indicating adequate testing capacity. Fairfax County and Alexandria posted their lowest positivity rates Monday at 3.6% and 3.7%, respectively.
D.C. reported a positivity rate of 1.9% and Maryland reported 2.87%.
In D.C., another 46 cases of COVID-19 were announced Tuesday. In Maryland, 482 more cases and nine more deaths were announced. Virginia reported 1,036 new cases and 10 deaths.
The map below shows the number of coronavirus cases diagnosed per 100,000 residents.
Coronavirus Cases in DC, Maryland and Virginia
COVID-19 cases by population in D.C. and by county in Maryland and Virginia
Local Coronavirus Headlines
- Parents launched a campaign on Change.org to urge the Fauquier County Public Schools board to reconsider its decision to start hybrid classes in November.
- Child care capacity is expanding in Maryland under phase three. Montgomery and Prince George's counties opted to remain at current operating levels.
- D.C. reported 105 new coronavirus cases Tuesday, the highest number since early June.
- Gym goers in Arlington, Virginia, will soon take spin classes on an open air training terrace instead of peddling away indoors. Take a look at how it works.
- D.C. updated its list of states subject to travel restrictions because they're considered high risk due to coronavirus. The next updated list is set to be released Monday, Oct. 19.
- A Maryland high school donated the money it raised for prom to an effort to fight COVID-19 when the pandemic forced it to cancel the party.
- D.C. plans to have high school sports return in January.
- D.C. granted permission for six indoor venues to host performances. D.C. also granted permission for the Adams Morgan business improvement district to host outdoor movies.
- A judge sentenced a Maryland man to a year in jail for throwing parties that exceeded capacity restrictions at the beginning of the governor’s coronavirus emergency order.
- D.C.'s mayor extended the city's coronavirus state of emergency on Wednesday to last through the end of the year.
- Maryland child care providers can return to the full teacher-to-child ratios for which they are licensed, state officials said Thursday, and some nursing homes will be able to resume indoor visits.
- Montgomery and Prince George's counties are among those that did not enter phase three with the state of Maryland. Here's a roundup of counties in our area.
- Prince George's County will allow tanning salons, banquet halls and other businesses to open with restrictions. Officials recently adjusted some other rules too. Read more.
- Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan authorized all public schools in the state to begin “safely” reopening because state metrics on the coronavirus show improvements. The state “strongly suggests” that local school districts bring students back into schools but cannot force them to do so, Hogan said. Montgomery and Prince George's schools both affirmed that they were not altering plans to hold classes online throughout the first half of the school year.
- Prince George's County revisited its phase two reopening executive order due to an uptick in coronavirus cases, according to the county executive's office.
- Virginia entered phase three reopening July 1, loosening restrictions on restaurants, stores, gyms and pools. Northam has said more restrictions could be implemented if cases continue to grow.
- D.C. entered phase two June 22, allowing indoor dining, gyms, libraries and houses of worship to reopen with restrictions.
- Montgomery County entered phase two June 19, reopening with restrictions gyms, houses of worship, indoor dining and retail.
How to Stay Safe
There are ways to lower your risk of catching coronavirus. Here are guidelines from the CDC:
- 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.