coronavirus

Coronavirus in DC, Maryland, Virginia: What to Know on Oct. 22

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

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A COVID-19 vaccine could be ready for review as early as November, according to the head of Operation Warp Speed.

"We are on the verge of knowing in the next few weeks whether these vaccines work," said Dr. Moncef Slaoui, Chief Advisor of Operation Warp Speed, who spoke Wednesday at the Moderna Clinical Trial site at George Washington University.

Moderna, which developed a vaccine in partnership with the National Institutes of Health, started its phase three trials in July with a plan to enroll 30,000 volunteers to test the shots.

Participants received two doses of the experimental treatment while others were given a placebo. The participants' immune responses were tracked after each dose.

Moderna will review the treatment's efficacy once 53 cases of coronavirus have been diagnosed among all trial participants, which could be as soon as November, due to the size of the trial and the average rate of COVID-19 infection among the general population.

The trial could be considered a success if the treatment at that point is determined to be at least 74% effective, according to Moderna's clinical study protocol.

Covid-19 Vaccine Protest DC
Photo By Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
UNITED STATES - OCTOBER 21: Vaccine affordability protesters dance as the mobile Long Live GoGo band plays outside of the Department of Health and Human Services building in Washington on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. The protest was held to call for safe and free Covid-19 vaccines. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Virtual learning resumes Thursday for Arlington Public Schools after an internet outage led to the cancellation of classes for more than 25,000 students on Wednesday.


D.C. Public Schools' plan to return elementary school students to classrooms on Nov. 9 will prioritize students who are experiencing homelessness, have special education needs, are at risk or are learning the English language.

Families who will be offered a spot in an in-person learning classroom will be notified by Friday, Oct. 23, school officials said.

Members of the Washington Teachers' Union have protested for several months over returning to the classroom due to health and safety concerns amid the pandemic.

D.C.’s schools chancellor answered questions from parents as the school system prepares to bring elementary school students back to classrooms. News4's Jackie Bensen reports.

Looking ahead to spring, the 2021 National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade has already been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the organizers announced.

“The health and safety of our festival staff and the attendees, sponsors and other stakeholders remain the Festival’s top priority,” National Cherry Blossom Festival President and CEO Diana Mayhew said in a statement.

The festival is working with the D.C. mayor’s office, the National Park Service and others to plan safe programming for next year’s festival, scheduled for March 20 through April.


Here's where we stand as the coronavirus continues to change our lives in D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

What the Data Shows

D.C. reported 39 new cases of coronavirus and no new deaths for the second day in a row. Maryland reported 743 new cases and 12 deaths. Virginia reported 1,062 new cases and eight deaths.

Seven-day averages in D.C. (53), Maryland (633) and Virginia (849), are remaining in line with levels seen over the past week.

D.C. reported 95 hospitalizations, Maryland reported 458 and Virginia reported 685 on Thursday.

D.C., Maryland and Virginia reported positivity rates of 1.8%, 3.1% and 5%, respectively, on Thursday.

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

Source: DC, MD and VA Health Departments
Credit: Anisa Holmes / NBC Washington


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How to Stay Safe

There are ways to lower your risk of catching coronavirus. Here are guidelines from the CDC:

  • Anyone over the age of 2 should wear a mask or face covering. Keep it over your nose and mouth.
  • Wash your hands often. When you do, scrub with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. As a backup, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who lives outside your home. That means staying six feet away from anyone outside your circle, even if you're wearing masks.
  • Always cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
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