LincolnHealth reported 42 positive COVID-19 cases for Sept. 6-12, a record number for a one-week period since the beginning of the pandemic. The positivity rate rose to 8.55% with 491 tests and 14 cases were considered breakthrough cases, those who have been fully vaccinated and tested positive. Director of Communications John Martins said the under-18 crowd represented 18 cases most of which were likely influenced by the return to school.
LincolnHealth’s Respiratory Care Clinic continues to be challenged by call volume and testing, said Martins. The RCC conducted a one-day record of 148 tests, took 486 phone calls and made over 200 outgoing calls Sept. 14. As of 2:30 p.m. Sept. 15, 120 tests had been conducted. The hardest part about the job is callers who are treating the staff poorly, Martins said.
“We understand the frustration those waiting to be tested are experiencing, but when call volume is off the charts, it may take more time than usual to return your call. Our team members are working extremely hard to serve our community and have been doing so for many months. They deserve common courtesy during all interactions.”
Martins said LincolnHealth professionals continue to urge all unvaccinated people to talk to their healthcare providers about concerns with the vaccine. With Maine’s transmission data showing an increase in cases and prevalence of the Delta variant, vaccination remains the best protection against the virus.