coronavirus

Coronavirus Death Toll Tops 8,000 in Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, the daily increase in COVID-19 deaths and number of cases is dramatically lower than what the state was reporting two months ago, at the height of the local coronavirus surge

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Massachusetts reported 50 more coronavirus deaths on Friday, bringing the total for the pandemic to 8,013, health officials said.

Another 233 people were diagnosed with the virus, raising that total to 108,070, according to the Department of Public Health's daily COVID-19 report.

Friday's report was released after Gov. Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh both issued warnings against relaxing safety precautions for fear that a second coronavirus surge could happen in the state, as others across the country are experiencing new and stark increases in case counts.

In Massachusetts, the daily increase in COVID-19 deaths and number of cases is dramatically lower than what the state was reporting two months ago, at the height of the local coronavirus surge. That's allowed the state to move just shy of Phase 3 of its four-phase reopening plan.

The six indicators informing how fast Massachusetts can move through the four phases of reopening the state are: the COVID-19 positive test rate, the number of individuals who died from COVID-19, the number of patients with COVID-19 in hospitals, the health care system's readiness, testing capacity, contact tracing capabilities. Their statuses have held steady, with half in a positive trend and half "in progress" since June 5.

How Coronavirus Has Grown in Each State — in 1 Chart

This graph shows how the number of coronavirus cases have grown in Massachusetts, in the context of the other U.S. states, dating to the early days of the pandemic. It shows how many cases have been diagnosed each day in each state since their 500th cases. Select a state from the dropdown to highlight its track.

Source: The COVID Tracking Project
Credit: Amy O’Kruk/NBC

The second step of Phase 2 of the state's 4-phased reopening plan went effect on Monday. It allows indoor dining to begin, increases capacity at offices from 25% to 50% and allows retailers to open fitting rooms, though by appointment only.

For months, Massachusetts has been one of the epicenters of COVID-19 in the U.S. It has the seventh-most cases among all states and the third-most deaths.

Baker and other health officials have said Massachusetts' high tallies may be due to the state testing among the most residents per capita in the country.

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