COVID Testing FHH (copy)

Cars were lined up as people waited to get a COVID-19 test at the Frederick Health Hospital drive-thru testing site on Monocacy Boulevard last month. Frederick County reported its highest daily increase of confirmed COVID-19 cases with 174 reported Wednesday. At Frederick Health Hospital, there were 36 coronavirus patients, including four in intensive care, according to the county health department.

Frederick County reported its highest daily increase of confirmed COVID-19 cases by a wide margin Wednesday.

The 174 cases reported by the Frederick County Health Department easily surpassed the previous high (118) that was recorded on Nov. 25 and brings the overall number of confirmed cases in Frederick County to 7,123.

The spike in the county comes one day after Gov. Larry Hogan pleaded with Maryland residents with a clinical background to join in the fight against the novel coronavirus and warned that hospitals might soon have to increase their bed capacity.

At Frederick Health Hospital, there were 36 coronavirus patients, including four in intensive care, according to the county health department.

“Recently, Frederick Health Hospital has experienced higher volumes of COVID-positive patients, even more so than the first wave back in the spring,” said Cheryl Cioffi, the senior vice president and chief operating officer/chief nursing officer for Frederick Health Hospital.

“We have been working hard for many months to bolster our supply of [personal protective equipment], implement new treatments and cross-train staff,” she said. “We have also worked with state planners to discuss and evaluate our surge plans.”

At his news conference Tuesday, Hogan said Maryland hospitals were nearing a threshold (8,000 total patients) that would require all of them to increase their bed capacity by 10 percent within the span of a week.

Frederick Health Hospital has 239 total beds (220 acute care, 19 intensive care).

“We do anticipate a volume increase in the coming weeks and are prepared to respond accordingly,” Cioffi said.

Statewide, hospitalizations for the coronavirus actually dipped slightly Wednesday, falling by 5 to 1,578. But the number of patients in intensive care increased by nine to 359.

Hogan said the situation is likely to get worse over the coming weeks, particularly as people gather for the holidays. But he was not yet ready to announce any further restrictions.

“We are [making decisions] as we think they are necessary,” he said. “Today we are focused on what we do about the fact that our hospitals have too many people in them. We’ve taken an awful lot of actions on trying to restrict the virus, and we are going to continue to look at things as they become necessary.”

There are now 203,355 confirmed cases in Maryland after 2,220 were reported Wednesday by the Maryland Department of Health.

That marks the 28th straight day that daily case increases in Maryland have exceeded 1,000 and the 12th time in the past 19 days they have exceeded 2,000.

There were 16 new deaths in the state due to the virus, but none were in Frederick County. The death toll stands at 4,558 in the state and 142 in the county.

Meanwhile, the seven-day rolling positivity rate stood at 7.52 in the state and 7.68 in the county.

County Executive Jan Gardner is scheduled to hold a public briefing on the coronavirus at 2 p.m. Thursday. She will be joined by County Health Officer Dr. Barbara Brookmyer.

Gardner did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

Follow Greg Swatek on Twitter: @greg_swatek.

(14) comments


Thank goodness the ACA is in place to help those who would now have preexisting conditions due to the damage that COVID infections do to the body.


and according to the banner on page A5, the death count in Frederick County remains at zero. Better therapeutics and treatment protocols.

Keeping washing those hands and wearing a mask.



Death is not the only catastrophic result of Covid.

As you say, keep wearing a mask so your possibly Covid infected breath does not affect others.


Seven, I wonder how the politicians will relax the mask mandates once we have a vaccine? Why should I wear a mask after I've been immunized? It will be interesting to see how it plays out.


Greg F's what they SHOULD do...directly from Faucci and other researchers. The vaccine does NOT guarantee you will not contract the virus OR when exposed, will not at least harbor some of it while the vaccine does its job in protecting you...and thus being able to pass it on to others in that time. The majority of the statements out there as the vaccine will prevent you from being hospitalized, but not actually being infected. You get a flu shot, yet you do get infected...but without manifestations of illness while your body fights it with the vaccine's help. SO....for the dummies out there, CONTINUE WEARING YOUR MASK!!!


Given the data so far, I would be fine with vaccinated people not wearing masks. We were expecting about 60% protection from vaccines, but these are giving 95% protection against disease and even higher protection against serious infection. We don't know yet if vaccinated people might get infected and thus spread disease, so I might change my mind. We have to wait for that data and further guidance from real scientists.


So, Doctor Fed Up GregF, using your parameters you will be wearing a mask for the rest of your life.




We better be prepared to see a spike in strokes and heart attacks as some people deal with the clots that were left behind after being infected.

Additionally, one of the reasons that we haven't had more deaths is that we haven't overrun our hospitals yet. That's when the "real fun" begins. (real fun = horror).

Poor SD. They are taking it right on the chin and their governor fiddles as Rome burns.


The banner on page A5 says 142 confirmed C19 deaths in Frederick. The zero refers to the number that happened yesterday.


Good point, threecents. I haven't been saving my old papers, but it seems like it's been zero deaths for many days. I can't prove or disprove my assumption since the old papers go in the blue bin.

What say you?



bos, ePages.


Actually FYI - Frederick County has exploded in the past 10 days, our positivity rate is over 8%, higher than the state. 8 people (who are not in nursing homes) died in the past week and we are worse off with hospitalizations than in the spring.




Yeah, I've been watching that positivity rate too. Seems like just weeks ago FredCo was around three percent. Still watching the death tally. Plus two in today's paper.

Keep wearing those masks. We are all tired of the restrictions, we need to stay safe.


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