BULLETIN: Cecil County Reports 1st COVID-19 Positive Patient; Woman in her 20s Quarantined at Home in Western Cecil

March 22, 2020

Cecil County has received the first confirmation of a COVID-19 Coronavirus diagnosis in the county, a woman in her 20s who lives in the western sector of the county, County Executive Alan McCarthy announced on Sunday.

He said the woman “has no history of recent foreign travel or known contact with anyone who traveled.”

The Cecil County Health Department is working with the patient and the Maryland Department of Health to conduct contact tracing, the county announcement stated. This process will help to identify any people the individual has had close contact with recently. The individual is in stable condition and will be self-isolating at home. In order to protect the patient’s privacy, the County will not be releasing any additional details about the individual.

“Cecil County has taken a proactive role to address the threat that COVID-19 presents to the health of our community,” McCarthy stated. He ordered the closure of the county’s senior center in Elkton even before Gov. Larry Hogan directed a similar closure statewide late last week. Under state order, schools, restaurants and bars are closed for a two week period and gatherings of 50 or more people are banned.

“This first confirmed case serves as an important reminder that good hygiene practices and social distancing are critical to slowing the spread of the coronavirus in our communities,” McCarthy said Sunday. “I encourage all residents to stay at home as much as possible and wash their hands frequently.”

Meanwhile, Hogan appeared on national TV news talk shows on Sunday, defending, for the most part, President Trump’s handling of the emergency and saying the states would await further supplies assistance from the federal government

Hogan, a Republican, is the chairman of the bipartisan National Governors Association. His comments were in stark contrast with the vice-chair of the NGA—New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, who appeared on another Sunday TV show.

Cuomo said he was taking pro-active steps on his own to buy, on the open market, medical supplies such as gloves and face masks for medical personnel and highly-sought mechanical ventilators that could save the lives of critically ill COVID-19 patients. The federal government has said it will make available an estimated 10,000 ventilators, according to Vice President Pence, from a national “strategic stockpile” but so far there have been no documented distributions from that stockpile to the states.

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