Lincoln County saw two more residents confirmed to have COVID-19 in the past week, one Wednesday, May 6 and one Friday, May 8. With one more recovery, the number of active cases in the county is three.
Of the 15 cases in Lincoln County reported by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 12 people have recovered and none have been hospitalized.
LincolnHealth spokesperson John Martins said by email that one person had tested positive at LincolnHealth’s Miles Campus in Damariscotta within the past week.
As of Sunday, May 10, seven people have tested positive for COVID-19 through LincolnHealth. The hospital has conducted 433 tests, with 426 negative results.
Because of a recent agreement with Westbrook-based Idexx, Maine will more than double its testing capacity to 1,100 tests per day and is expected to expand testing by the end of the week.
Currently, only patients in hospitals or congregate care facilities, health care workers or first responders, people 60 and up, or people who have an underlying medical condition are prioritized for testing, according to Maine CDC guidelines.
Martins said LincolnHealth has not yet expanded its testing and continues to follow state guidelines. He said a work group at the state level is creating a plan to roll out expanded testing.
Martins said the hospital remains in a “surge maintenance” phase, prepared for a spike in COVID-19 cases that could require hospitalization and critical care. LincolnHealth has started to resume some time-sensitive nonemergency procedures.
He said the number of calls to the hospital’s COVID-19 clinic have remained flat over the past week, although the hospital saw two days with increased testing. The hospital conducted 16 tests Monday, May 11.
Martins emphasized that masking protocols, patient screening, and visitor restrictions remain in place at LincolnHealth.
“We recognize that some people are frustrated that they have to stop, but the screening is for their protection and the safety of our staff,” Martins said.
Martins said the hospital has also set up an employee-only entrance for additional safety as more patients enter for services. He stressed the continued need to observe good hand hygiene and physical distancing.
According to the Maine CDC, as of Tuesday, May 12, 1,477 people have or had COVID-19 in Maine. There have been 202 hospitalizations and 913 people have recovered. There have been 65 deaths.
Of the 1,477 cases, 139 are “probable cases.” This category includes people who are close contacts of someone with a confirmed case and become symptomatic.
The number of active cases, 499 – calculated by subtracting recoveries and deaths from the confirmed case total – is a decline of 26 from Monday, May 11.