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As Maryland’s COVID-19 infection rate has declined, Kent County is doing even better, said Kent County Health Officer William Webb in his report to the Kent County Commissioners on Tuesday, June 30. 

“Overall, Maryland conditions related to COVID-19 have been improving in the last three weeks,” Webb told the commissioners. “Hospitalizations, new cases and positivity rates are down while testing and supplies are up.”

Webb last reported to the Commissioners on June 9 when Kent’s total number of cases had reached 187. As of June 30, the total number of cases increased by 12 to 199. 

“If Maryland is doing well, Kent County is doing even better,” Webb said. “Our numbers have improved across the board. On many measures we are now doing better than the rest of the state.”

Of the 12 new cases in Kent, 10 were community spread and only 2 were attributed to nursing homes, whicch is a dramatic reversal from the early days of the pandemic in Kent when up to 80 percent of the infections came from the county’s long-term care facilities.

“Now community spread cases are significantly outpacing nursing homes,” Webb said.

There have been three deaths since June 9, all attributed to nursing homes. 

Webb said drive-thru testing that began on June 8 in Kent and has yielded 450 tests and 12 percent of Kent’s population (2,400) has been tested. He said the statewide goal from the Maryland Department of Health was 10 percent.  Kent is in the top four in the state for the percentage of population tested.

Kent also has a 2.26 percent positivity rate for testing, which is less than half the state’s positivity rate of 4.9 percent. 

While Maryland is trending downward in COVID-19 infections, some states are trending up.

“Spikes in Texas, South Carolina and Florida…demonstrate that the virus can flare up given the opportunity,” Webb said.

In a brief interview with the Kent Pilot on Wednesday, Webb said citizens should continue to take precautions to protect themselves and others from the virus.

“Our numbers have been very good and our progress has been good,” Webb said. “But I urge all citizens not to become complacent and continue to maintain social distancing and wear a mask. It’s still relevant and it’s still very important to keep us all on the right track.”