Massachusetts weekend coronavirus deaths hit 35; 1,300 new cases

FILE – In this Monday, Sept. 16, 2019 file photo Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker speaks with reporters at the Statehouse, in Boston. The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum in Milwaukee on Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020 said they are taking preorders for Baker bobblehead dolls, and said $5 from the $25 cost of each one will be donated to the Protect The Heroes fund’s 100 Million Mask Challenge that pays for protective equipment for health care workers nationwide. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

BOSTON – Almost 1,300 new COVID-19 cases and 35 new deaths from the respiratory disease were reported over the weekend, while the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients dropped both days, falling back below 500.

The 744 new cases logged Sunday and 550 on Saturday brought the state’s total to 140,647 since the first case was reported here in February, according to Department of Public Health data.

Counting deaths among patients with confirmed and probable cases, a total of 9,737 people in Massachusetts have lost their lives to the pandemic.

The seven-day weighted average of positive molecular tests — based on total tests administered, not individuals newly tested — stood at 1.2 percent in Sunday’s DPH data report.

The daily percent of tested individuals who are positive was at or above 4 percent from Oct. 12-17, according to Sunday’s report, and hit 5 percent on Oct. 15.

As of noon Sunday, 483 people with COVID-19 were hospitalized in Massachusetts, including 83 who were in intensive care and 32 who were intubated.

Five months ago, the day Gov. Charlie Baker launched the initial portion of his phased economic reopening plan, the Department of Public Health’s May 18 report showed 1,042 new cases, 65 new deaths, a rolling average positive rate of 10.2 percent and a three-day average of 2,607 hospitalized patients.

The current positive-test rate of 1.2 percent and three-day average of 18 deaths are both up over lows recorded in September — the test rate is up 51 percent from its 0.8 percent, and average deaths as of Oct. 15 is double where it stood on Sept. 6 and 7.