Mass. Reports 337 New Confirmed COVID Cases, 18 More Deaths

Friday's report from the DPH marks the eighth day in a row that the newly confirmed COVID cases have been under 1,000

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Massachusetts health officials announced 337 new coronavirus cases and 18 more deaths Friday.

The report from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health brings the death toll to 17,384. Another 358 deaths are considered probably linked to COVID-19.

The latest report on the daily COVID metrics brings the total number of confirmed cases in the state at 655,687, DPH data shows.

Many of Massachusetts' COVID metrics, including the average number of coronavirus cases, average coronavirus test positivity and average number of confirmed deaths reported each day, have been falling since the end of March, according to trends posted to the Department of Public Health's interactive coronavirus dashboard.

The seven-day average of positive tests on Friday ticked down slightly to 1.14%.

The number of patients in Massachusetts hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 cases decreased to 376. Of those currently hospitalized, 104 are listed as being in intensive care units and 63 are intubated.

Health officials' projection of active COVID-19 cases decreased again to 14,884 Friday from 15,833 on Thursday.

A total of 3,134,645 people have been fully immunized in Massachusetts, according to the department. Gov. Charlie Baker is aiming to reach 4.1 million fully vaccinated by the beginning of June.

More than 7 million total doses of COVID vaccines have been administered in Massachusetts as of Thursday, including nearly 3.9 million first doses and more than 2.9 million second doses of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. Nearly 230,000 doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered.

The new data follows new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention allowing fully vaccinated people to stop wearing masks in most indoor settings and among outdoor crowds.

"Today is a great day for America," President Joe Biden said Thursday.

Gov. Charlie Baker said Thursday that Massachusetts' mask order would remain in effect for the time being. Friday, he said the state would update its reopening plans "early next week."

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