AUGUSTA – The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced Sunday several developments related to the disease caused by the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Maine CDC has received five new presumptive positive tests from a lab affiliated with MaineHealth, which are now under review at the State’s Health and Environmental Testing Lab.
Additionally, samples that test positive at HETL will now be classified as confirmed cases, rather than presumptive positive cases, based on the U.S. CDC’s confidence in the State’s testing protocols.
Maine now has five presumptive positive tests and seven confirmed cases.
The presumptive positive tests are for the following individuals:
- Maine CDC has received a presumptive positive test result for a person under the age of 18. The individual is a male who resides in Cumberland County and is isolated at home. This is the state’s first presumptive positive test result for a person under the age of 18.
- Maine CDC also received a presumptive positive test for a resident of Oceanview at Falmouth, a senior living community. The individual is a male in his 80s. Maine CDC staff immediately contacted the individual, the person’s medical provider, and the administration of the facility to investigate and mitigate potential exposures. He is hospitalized at Maine Medical Center. Staff, residents of the community, and their families are being notified. Maine CDC instructed the facility to begin symptom checks on all residents immediately as a precautionary measure. Maine CDC is releasing this more detailed identifying information about this presumptive positive test because it could involve potential community spread. Maine CDC will release more detailed identifying information when it can be part of a strategy to help reduce potential community spread.
- Maine CDC received presumptive positive test results for a woman in her 30s, a health care worker, who resides in Lincoln County. Her employer has been contacted and steps have been taken to reduce exposure to patients, staff, and other community members. She is isolated at home.
- Maine CDC today received a presumptive positive test for a woman in her 70s from Cumberland County. She is isolated at home.
- Maine CDC today received a presumptive positive test for a male in his 40s from Cumberland County. He is isolated at home.
Affected individuals have been notified. More information will be released when it becomes available. Samples from these five individuals and other presumptive positive tests continue to be sent to Maine CDC for review.
Additionally, U.S. CDC has updated its classification of test results. As of today, U.S. CDC no longer requires HETL to send samples from presumptive positive tests to the federal lab for confirmation. Moving forward, samples that test positive at HETL will be classified as confirmed cases. Cases previously classified as presumptive positive have now been reclassified as confirmed cases, based on the U.S. CDC’s confidence in Maine CDC’s testing protocols. Tests conducted at outside labs that were previously classified as preliminary presumptive positive will now be identified as presumptive positive tests as they await confirmation.
HETL is receiving samples and conducting testing for COVID-19 seven days a week.
One case identified Friday as a preliminary presumptive positive has been reclassified as negative, based on Maine CDC’s review of a sample submitted by a lab affiliated with MaineHealth. Retesting yielded negative results, and U.S. CDC concurs with Maine CDC’s determination. This test result involved a woman in her 20s from York County, who was being cared for at Maine Medical Center in Portland.
In response to today’s affirmation from the U.S. CDC of HETL’s testing results, Maine CDC now has two categories related to positive test results:
- Confirmed cases: This now includes cases formerly identified as presumptive positive. This classification applies to samples sent by a health provider directly to HETL that test positive and to samples from non-governmental labs for which HETL validates positive results. Maine has seven confirmed cases.
- Presumptive positive tests: These are samples that test positive at non-governmental labs and are sent to HETL for validation. Maine has five presumptive positive tests at this time.
The Maine CDC webpage devoted to COVID-19 will be updated to reflect these changes. Numbers for each category will be updated by noon Monday through Friday.