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Coronavirus in the DMV: October 23

The coronavirus impact on the DMV continues. Here are the updates for October 23.

WASHINGTON — The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) remains present around the country, as well as here in the DMV. Things like masks and social distancing are the most important to help combat the spread of the virus.

This blog details the latest updates on the coronavirus in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. Check-in each day for what’s new, where each part of the DMV is at in its phased reopening plan and what direction the coronavirus trend is headed.

THIS STORY IS NO LONGER BEING UPDATED. CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST.

Have a question? Text it to us at 202-895-5599.

Updates on coronavirus cases come from health departments between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. every day.

Tracking the Coronavirus

  • The FDA has approved the first drug for treating coronavirus, details here
  • As of Friday, D.C. is now averaging 50 new cases of the coronavirus a day. That’s down 17% from where the city was two weeks ago after cases jumped upward in early October.
  • In D.C., the average turnaround time for coronavirus test results has fallen over the past two weeks back down to roughly 2.5 days. The wait had increased to more than three days earlier this month, at least partially as a result of a spike in testing after October 1.
  • In Maryland, average daily cases among people over the age of 65 have risen sharply during the month of October. That demographic was averaging about 65 new cases a day at the end of September. As of Friday, that number is now nearly 100 new cases a day – a 56% increase.
  • In Virginia, the state health department says more than 12,000 people have now had to be hospitalized due to COVID-19. More than 1,000 Virginians are currently being treated for the coronavirus, and more than 200 of those are currently in the ICU.

Reopening the DMV

The latest in reopening news:

  • A new order from Maryland's governor may allow fans to watch football in person again. Details here.
  • County Executive Angela Alsobrooks announced some youth sports registration would reopen to children in the county.
  • Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks advises against trick-or-treating this Halloween, per CDC guidelines. Haunted houses will also not be allowed in the county this year.
  • Prince George's County health authorities are also cautioning against "trunk or treat" events that draw people to parking lots where candy is given from trunks of cars – suggesting that residents participate in organized drive-thru alternatives.
  • Mayor Bowser extends D.C.'s public health emergency order until Dec. 31, 2020. Read the full order here.
  • D.C. Public Schools announces that a limited number of DCPS students can return to in-person learning starting in November. Read the detailed plan here.
  • DC health released its latest list of high-risk states.
  • D.C. announced a pilot that will allow a limited number of venues to host live entertainment. Here are the details.
  • Maryland has entered the third and final stage of its reopening plan, with all businesses able to reopen. Details on what Phase 3 looks like here.
  • Montgomery County has adjusted some of its Phase 2 guidelines. More here. 
  • Prince George's County, Maryland, remains in Phase 2, but released additional reopenings. Here's a look.
  • Metro returns to a normal schedule with masks and social distancing still required. Here's the latest.

Previous Updates

October 22:

  • DC launches CAN COVID-19 exposure alert system
  • DC Public School officials announce building checklist to prepare for Term 2 of in-person school reopening.
  • DC parents will be notified on Oct 23 to accepts an in-person learning seat and Oct. 30 for CARE seats.
  • DC Public Schools announces two in-person learning options: regular in-person learning or CARE classroom seat.
  • PreK to fifth grade will begin Term 2 on Nov. 9.
  • D.C.’s coronavirus trend decline continues. As of Thursday, the city is now averaging 9% fewer new cases per day than it was two weeks ago.
  • In Maryland’s D.C. metro counties, Montgomery County’s seven-day coronavirus average exceeded Prince George’s County’s this week for the first time since July. As of Thursday, Montgomery County was averaging 105 new cases of the coronavirus a day. Prince George’s County was averaging 104.
  • Virginia is now averaging 35% more new deaths from the coronavirus each day than it was two weeks ago. The commonwealth is averaging almost four times as many deaths each day from COVID-19 as Maryland is.
  • In Northern Virginia, Fairfax County reported 166 new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday – its second-highest single day count since June. NoVa’s most populous county is now averaging nearly 100 new cases of the coronavirus a day.

October 21:

  • D.C.’s coronavirus average is still declining after spiking in early October. As of Wednesday, the city was averaging 2% fewer new cases each day than it was two weeks ago.
  • On Wednesday, DC Health reported the city’s rate of transmission – the number of new infections a case can be expected to cause – had dropped below the “moderate community spread” mark for the first time since September. The data for this metric is delayed, and so Wednesday’s numbers represent the rate of transmission for October 9.
  • While Maryland’s coronavirus numbers remain on an upward trend, the growth seems to be slowing a bit. As of Wednesday, the state’s average for new cases each day was 9% higher than two weeks earlier. Two weeks ago, that change was 15%.
  • Virginia reported 30 new deaths from the coronavirus on Wednesday – the second day in a row the commonwealth set a new monthly high. Virginia is now averaging nearly 20 deaths a day from the virus. Just a week ago it was averaging nine deaths a day.

Read previous updates here.

What precautions should you take?

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water are unavailable.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Check the status of the virus in your state with your state health department's websites by tapping below:

D.C. Coronavirus Surveillance Data

Virginia Department of Health

Maryland Department of Health