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Mass. reports 387 new confirmed coronavirus cases, 14 new deaths

Lesley Galdamez placed a swab in a container after administering a COVID-19 or coronavirus test at the NEW Health COVID-19 testing site in Charlestown.
Lesley Galdamez placed a swab in a container after administering a COVID-19 or coronavirus test at the NEW Health COVID-19 testing site in Charlestown.Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

The death toll from confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Massachusetts rose by 14 to 8,389, state officials reported Friday, and the number of confirmed cases climbed by 387, bringing the total to 109,787.

It was the third day in a row that new coronavirus cases topped 300. But the Department of Public Health said on Friday that the case counts were higher because of a backlog in reporting of positive tests.

“The number of new cases reported today appears higher because of delays in the reporting of test results to DPH from multiple laboratories, including large national commercial laboratories. However, these positive test results have been assigned retrospectively to the appropriate date of test,” a Department of Public Health spokesperson said Friday.

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The state Department of Public Health on Friday reported 127 new probable cases, bringing that total to 7,825. No new probable-case deaths were reported, keeping that total at 220.

State officials said 19,151 more people had been tested for the coronavirus as of Friday, bringing the total number of individuals tested to 1,180,605. The total number of tests administered climbed to 1,535,835.

The state reported that new antibody tests had been completed for 963 people, bringing that total to 96,180.

Key metrics the state is eyeing for its phased reopening plan still hovered well below the numbers reported during the springtime surge.

The seven-day weighted average of positive tests increased to 2.1 percent as of Thursday. It’s first time that figure has gone above 2 percent since mid-June. But the current number represents a 93 percent drop from mid-April highs.

The three day average of hospitalized coronavirus patients dropped to 368 as of Thursday, down from 374 the day before, representing a 90 percent drop since mid-April.

The number of hospitals using surge capacity dropped to three as of Thursday, an 86 percent drop since mid-April.

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Finally, the three day average of deaths from confirmed coronavirus cases dropped to 13 as of Tuesday, down from 14 the day before. That is a 92 percent drop from mid-April highs.

Friday’s numbers were released as Governor Charlie Baker urged Massachusetts residents not to let guard down on social distancing and mask-wearing, acknowledging the case numbers are increasing. He specifically cited a number of large gatherings that have opened the door to outbreaks, including a recent lifeguard party in Falmouth, a house party in Chatham, an unauthorized football camp in Weymouth, a Chelmsford party, a Wrentham gathering, and a 90-person prom party in Cohasset.

Baker said the state’s current guidelines limit indoor gatherings to no more than 25 people. He said that if the numbers get worse, he would have to consider a number of options, including reducing the size of those gatherings.

“Things are definitely different because of the virus but there’s a responsible way to gather,” Baker said at a press conference Friday. “People need to do their part to protect their friends, their families, their neighbors, and their communities.”

Travis Andersen of the Globe staff contributed.




Christina Prignano can be reached at christina.prignano@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @cprignano.