State health officials reported 313 additional cases of COVID-19 in Maine on Monday as well as six additional deaths among individuals with the disease.
To date, the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has tracked 29,611 total confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 since the coronavirus since appeared in Maine in March. The 313 cases reported on Monday is lower than the seven-day average of 522 cases, although the state health lab frequently receives fewer test for processing or results from other labs during weekends.
With the six additional deaths reported Monday, Maine’s death toll amid the COVID-19 pandemic stands at 438.
Meanwhile, thousands of additional people are being vaccinated for COVID-19 daily, although the pace of vaccinations — in Maine and nationwide — has been slower than anticipated. New figures had yet to be posted Monday morning by the Maine CDC, but as of Sunday 54,557 vaccination shots had been administered in Maine. That includes 48,937 initial doses of the two-shot regimen as well as 5,620 second shots.
Vaccinations are averaging roughly 12,000 per week in Maine, far short of the 50,000 weekly vaccinations that state health officials’ goal for turning the tide against the virus. Shipments of vaccine from the federal government have been slower than anticipated, although Maine has consistently ranked among the states with the highest vaccination rates in the early weeks of the vaccine rollout.
Maine’s vaccination plan is currently focused on health care professionals, along with residents and staff of nursing homes or other long-term care facilities. The next phase of vaccinations, which is expected to begin in February, will target Mainers age 75 or older and essential frontline workers, such as police officers, teachers, grocery store workers, postal clerks, daycare workers and those involved in food/agricultural production.
This story will be updated.