Hogan: Statewide contact tracing operation will be fully operational next week

Maryland’s contact tracing operation for coronavirus cases will be fully operational in the entire state starting next week, Gov. Larry Hogan said on Thursday. “To support our local health officials, the state has built a robust contact tracing operation and massively expanded Maryland’s disease investigation capacity,” Hogan said in a statement. “This will be a partnership across all 24 jurisdictions, and an all-hands-on-deck effort to ensure health officials on the ground can trace and isolate the virus.” (Md Reporter)

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Lockdowns, strict measures making life difficult for Maryland prisoners. But are they keeping them alive?

Life inside Maryland’s prison system has never been easy, plagued by isolation, violence, cramped quarters and rampant corruption, as shown by the arrests of nearly 200 guards and inmates in recent years. But amid the coronavirus pandemic, life has become unbearable, attorneys, inmates and their families say. Lockdowns are nearly constant, prison officials acknowledge, and telephone time is cut short. Prisoners say they are stuck in cells that are rarely cleaned. (Balt Sun)

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Johns Hopkins Bayview To Host Emergency Blood Drive May 27-29

Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center is hosting a blood drive next week. The blood drive will be May 27-29 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the Johns Hopkins Asthma & Allergy Center. All donors who give blood will get a Red Cross t-shirt.The hospital does ask if you have traveled to China and its special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau, as well as Iran, Italy and South Korea, or if you’ve been diagnosed with or have had contact with anyone with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, postpone your donation for 28 days. (WJZ)

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County launches grants for small businesses and farmers, Gardner defends delayed reopening

Frederick County full-time farmers, small businesses and micro businesses will be able to apply for a COVID-relief grant starting next week, County Executive Jan Gardner announced at a press conference on Thursday morning. The JumpStart grants were funded by the county’s CARES Act money, which was received this week. Full-time farmers will be eligible for $6,000, small businesses will be eligible for $10,000 and micro businesses will be eligible for $3,300. (News-Post)

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All City Events In Baltimore, Including Artscape, Fourth Of July Fireworks, Canceled Through August 31 Due To Coronavirus

All city events with more than 250 participants in Baltimore have been canceled through August 31 due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young said Wednesday. The mayor made the announcement during a news conference Wednesday morning. “After consultation with our public health experts, we believe this is the best move for the health of our city and its residents,” he said. (WJZ)

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Maryland counties, including Baltimore City, tell Hogan they lack resources to safely reopen

Executives from six Maryland counties — including Baltimore Mayor Bernard C. "Jack" Young — sent a letter Tuesday to Gov. Larry Hogan saying they lack the resources to safely reopen their jurisdictions in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. The local officials asked the state to conduct more testing and to forge better partnerships with localities to distribute personal protective equipment. (Balt Bus Journal)

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Montgomery officials say county may start to reopen within a week

Maryland’s most populous county said Wednesday that it may lift some social distancing restrictions within the next week, another tentative step toward reopening the Washington region as the rates of novel coronavirus infections and deaths show signs of slowing. “We are moving in the right direction,” Travis Gayles, head of Montgomery County’s health department, said about plans to join other parts of the state in partially lifting restrictions on gatherings and nonessential businesses. (Wash Post)

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Maryland to test all detainees, staff at prisons and juvenile facilities for coronavirus

Following calls from prisoner advocates and employee unions, Maryland will undertake universal testing at state prisons and juvenile centers, Gov. Larry Hogan announced Wednesday. Six state prison inmates have died from the coronavirus so far, and hundreds of inmates and employees have tested positive for the virus. Juvenile facilities have also experienced outbreaks, including the Silver Oak Academy in Carroll County, where dozens of children and staff tested positive. (Balt Sun)

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