PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine has spent more than $33 million on masks, gowns and other supplies meant to keep health care workers safe during the pandemic.
With funds provided through the federal coronavirus relief legislation, Maine has been working to acquire everything from disposable gloves. to jugs of hand sanitizer, to the custom-fitting respirator masks, the Bangor Daily News reported.
The personal protective equipment has been distributed to health care providers, nursing homes, schools, state employees and other groups.
The pandemic has caused wild price swings with per-unit prices ranging from 35 cents to $6.29 for N-95 respirator masks. All told, the state ordered more than a million of them between March and July, the newspaper reported.
The $33.8 million figure from Maine’s Department of Administrative and Financial Services doesn’t include personal protective equipment the state received from the federal stockpile or independent purchases by the state’s health care organizations.
The largest portion of Maine’s PPE funding — $20.7 million — has gone to protective clothing such as gowns and isolation suits, according to state procurement data.
Maine health officials on Friday reported 26 new positive test results for COVID-19, but no new deaths. The state has now recorded 4,115 cases and 126 COVID-19-related deaths to date. The state lists 385 active cases.
Maine has seen a slight uptick in cases this week, with 20 on Wednesday and 19 on Thursday, after seeing nine straight days of 17 or fewer daily cases.
The number of reported deaths in the state has slowed with the last day Maine reported more than one death in a single day being July 28, when it reported two. The state’s highest number of deaths reported in one day is five, coming on both April 23 and June 2. Maine has recorded five deaths this month.
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