D.C., Virginia and Maryland coronavirus updates for Thursday

Maryland has 581 confirmed coronavirus cases after state officials on Thursday announced an increase of 157 cases, by far the largest one-day rise. That brings the total in Maryland, the District and Virginia to 1,208.

The new cases are more than double its largest single-day increase so far.

In a Twitter message, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said, “We are only at the beginning of this crisis, in our state, in the National Capital Region, and in America. As I have repeatedly stressed, we should continue to expect the number of cases to dramatically and rapidly rise.”

Hogan added, “Today, we are also seeing an unprecedented increase in the number of Marylanders filing for unemployment. We are going to do everything we can to help people and small businesses get back on their feet.”

One-third of the new infections were reported in the Baltimore region, with Baltimore County and Baltimore City adding 29 and 19 cases, respectively. Montgomery County, the state’s most populous jurisdiction, added 37 cases for a total of 164, while neighboring Prince George’s County passed the 100-mark for the first time, with 101 known cases.

Of the 581 people who have tested positive in Maryland, 132 have been hospitalized and four have died, according to the Maryland Department of Health. Twenty-three patients have recovered and been released from isolation.

According to federal Labor Department numbers, 41,882 initial unemployment claims were filed in Maryland for the week ending March 21. That compares to the previous week, when 3,864 claims were filed.

“This battle is going to be much harder, take much longer, and be much worse than almost anyone comprehends,” Hogan said. “We have never faced anything like this ever before, and I continue to urge the people of our state to stay in place at home and stay safe.”

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