State health officials reported just 13 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, the lowest daily total since late last summer.

No additional deaths were reported.

There are typically fewer cases reported Mondays because less testing occurs on weekends, but the low total continues what has been a sustained downward trend.

The seven-day rolling average decreased to 49 cases, the lowest level since late October. This time last month, the daily average was 269 cases. Over the last eight days, cases haven’t gone above 70.

Cases have been plummeting across the country as well as more and more people have gotten vaccinated and as gatherings have moved outdoors where the virus doesn’t spread as easily. The seven-day average in the U.S. is just under 13,000 cases per day, although there are growing concerns that a coronavirus variant known as the Delta variant could create problems, especially in areas where vaccination rates are low.

The Delta variant ravaged India for weeks this spring and has moved to European countries, including the United Kingdom, as well as to the U.S. The variant is said to be more highly transmissible and has led to an increase in hospitalizations among younger individuals who haven’t been at higher risk with other variants.

Since the pandemic reached Maine, there have been 68,603 confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 and 845 deaths, according to data from the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Both are among the lowest per capita in the country.

Hospitalizations have been falling dramatically as well. As of Monday, 39 people were in the hospital with COVID-19, including 19 in critical care and 12 on ventilators. Hospitalizations haven’t been this low since Nov. 6, and just three weeks ago there were as many as 120 COVID patients in the hospital.

As for vaccinations, the state has administered 732,206 first doses, representing 61.8 percent of the eligible population age 12 or older, and 748,395 final doses, accounting for 63.2 percent of eligible residents. Included in the final doses are 77,893 of the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Maine trails only Vermont in percentage of residents fully vaccinated, according to a Bloomberg tracker, although the pace has fallen off steadily over the last two months.

Cumberland County, the state’s most populated, leads all counties with 66.9 percent of eligible residents fully vaccinated. Somerset County has the lowest vaccination rate, at 43.5 percent.

Among younger people, the rates are even lower, especially in rural counties. Of those between the ages of 12-39 in Cumberland County, 61.8 percent are vaccinated. No other county is even at 50 percent for that age group and five counties are below 33 percent.


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