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Mass. reports 632 new confirmed coronavirus cases, 12 new deaths

Drive-up coronavirus testing in Charlestown last week.
Drive-up coronavirus testing in Charlestown last week.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

The death toll from confirmed coronavirus cases in Massachusetts rose by 12 to 9,413, the Department of Public Health reported Tuesday. The number of confirmed cases climbed by 632, bringing the total to 137,565.

State officials also reported that 13,744 more people had been tested for coronavirus, bringing the total to more than 2.44 million. The number of administered tests climbed to more than 4.85 million. The state also reported that new antibody tests had been completed for 107 people, bringing that total to 123,089.

The seven-day average of positive tests per total tests administered, was at 1.2 percent. The lowest observed figure for that metric -- a number watched closely by state officials — is 0.8 percent.

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The state also offers on its dashboard a different measure of test positivity: daily positive tests per people tested. That number was 3.5 percent. Some experts have suggested that positive tests per people tested is a better measure of the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the three-day average of hospitalized coronavirus patients dropped slightly from 514 to 509 in Tuesday’s daily report. The lowest that metric has been is 302.

The number of hospitals using surge capacity was three and the three-day average of deaths from confirmed cases was 13; the lowest that number has been is nine.

In related news, Governor Charlie Baker acknowledged that cases have been on the rise, but assured reporters that the state is ready for the fall and winter.

The seven-day rolling average of daily confirmed coronavirus cases climbed last Tuesday and Wednesday to 588, then dipped in the next few days, but it ticked back up, reaching 601 on Tuesday.

The seven-day average had been as low as 151 on June 21. The seven-day average has surpassed 400 for the past 16 days and 300 for the past 28 days.

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The state is doing far better than the dark days of late April, when the rolling average reached more than 2,200 cases daily. But some experts have predicted a harrowing fall and winter is ahead nationally.

Cassandra Pierre, an assistant professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and a physician at Boston Medical Center, said recent coronavirus metrics have been “incredibly concerning.”

She said she was worried that as colder weather arrives, people will be bringing more of their activities and gatherings indoors, creating “many more opportunities for close-range transmission of potentially infectious respiratory droplets.”

The holiday season will also pose challenges, she said.

She said she hoped the current rise in cases would subside “so it gives us a little bit more of a buffer zone for the infections to come. If not, then I think it will lead to an even larger increase and potentially a second wave and maybe an even earlier second wave.”


Martin finucane can be reached at martin.finucane@globe.com. John Hilliard can be reached at john.hilliard@globe.com.