BALTIMORE (WJZ) – Maryland’s COVID-19 hospitalizations have fallen below 1,700, and the statewide positive rate has dropped below 9%, according to data released Tuesday by the Maryland Department of Health.
However, even as Governor Larry Hogan pointed out those improving indicators are a sign that Maryland is emerging from the wave of infections driven by Omicron, healthcare leaders say hospitals are still struggling with nursing shortages.
Maryland added 1,500 more COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of confirmed cases statewide to 956,780 since the pandemic began.
With hospitalizations down 38, the number of COVID-19 patients in Maryland hospitals is 1,678. The statewide positivity rate fell to 8.66%, down 0.38% since Monday.
The statewide death toll is 49 in the last 24 hours, meaning the tally is now 13,276 since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
Maryland is in the midst of a 28-day state of emergency enacted by the governor in response to rising hospitalizations and infections that have forced many hospitals across the state to pivot to crisis care standards.
Over the past few weeks, Hogan has also issued executive orders aimed at boosting the workforce in nursing homes, hospitals and emergency medical services.
Despite these efforts, the Maryland Hospital Association said Tuesday that hospitals continue to grapple with staffing issues. That includes 3,900 nursing vacancies, up 50% since the end of August.
Bob Atlas, the organization’s president and chief executive officer, said the MHA appreciates Governor Hogan’s efforts to address the staffing shortage but he noted that more needs to be done.
“Unfortunately, the Governor’s bill and other proposed bills to address hospital workforce challenges will not become law before the public health emergency,” Atlas said. The 30-day period takes place this Friday.
While Maryland’s workforce shortages pre-pandemic, he said, the difference with the healthcare industry is related to the work that saves lives, Atlas said.
“Our hospitals are exceptional in that they have to be ready for lifesaving services 24/7/365 no matter what,” he said. “We need legislative solutions, partnerships and innovation to ensure we have caregivers to meet every community need.”
Of those currently hospitalized with COVID-19 in Maryland, 1,346 are adults in acute care and 312 are adults in intensive care. State data shows 14 children are in acute care and another six are in the ICU.
There are 4,392,690 fully vaccinated Marylanders, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at least 94.6% of adults in the state have had at least one dose. When you take into account children 5 years of age and older, 89% of the population has had at least one dose of the vaccine.
The state has administered 14,482,590 doses of the vaccine.
In which, 4,635,356 first dose, 3,032 doses in the last 24 hours. Another 4,060.465 is the second dose, 3,229 in the past day. A total of 332,225 Marylanders received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 69 in the past day.
The state has managed 2,027,773 boosters, 7,211 rockets in the last 24 hours.
https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2022/02/01/covid-19-in-maryland-hospitalizations-dip-below-1700-positivity-rate-below-9/ Hospitalizations fall below 1,700, susceptibility rate less than 9% – CBS Baltimore