Maryland’s governor warned Monday that the national capital region was at a “critical turning point,” in the battle against the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Governor Larry Hogan said medical experts are advising that “in two weeks time, the DC, Virginia and Maryland areas could look like New York and the Tri-State area.”
The area saw a surge in cases and fatalities over the weekend, which brought its total case count to 2,840.
Hogan issued a stay-at-home order for residents, similar to those orders in California and Michigan, to stem the spread of the coronavirus.
The order, which goes into effect at 8 p.m. Monday, prohibits residents from leaving home except for trips considered essential, such as venturing out for food and medicine. People who violate the directive may be subject to one year in jail, a $5,000 fine or both.
Over the weekend, Hogan reported that a nursing home in that state has been struck by an outbreak of COVID-19 that includes 66 positive cases and 11 hospitalizations.
Hogan said that state and local health officials are at the Pleasant View Nursing Home in Mount Airy working on ways to protect the staff and residents.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.
The vast majority of people recover from the new virus.