The state of Massachusetts passed a tragic milestone Friday, as the toll of the coronavirus pandemic rose over 15,000.
The number of confirmed coronavirus deaths rose by 87, bringing the total to 15,051.
Meanwhile, the state’s coronavirus vaccination campaign, which offers hope of ending the deadly pandemic, continued, with the total number of vaccinations rising by 46,244 to 1,034,018, the Department of Public Health reported.
The number of new vaccinations was higher than on Thursday, when 37,259 were reported.
The total number of shots administered amounted to 68.8 percent of the 1,503,925 doses shipped to providers in the state so far, the DPH said.
The total shots administered included 776,843 first shots and 257,175 second shots. Those who have gotten their second shot of the currently approved two-dose vaccines are considered fully vaccinated.
Massachusetts is in the midst of a high-stakes campaign to vaccinate more than 4 million adults. The state’s effort got off to a slow start but has picked up recently.
The DPH also reported 2,228 new confirmed coronavirus cases Friday, bringing the state’s total to 525,486.
The DPH said 48,280 people were estimated to have active cases of the potentially deadly virus, and 1,223 confirmed coronavirus patients were in the hospital.
The DPH also reported that 106,107 more tests had been conducted for coronavirus. The total number of tests administered climbed to more than 14.7 million. New antigen tests had been completed for 3,049 people, bringing that total to 512,923.
The DPH reported that the seven-day average rate of positive tests, which is calculated from the total number of tests administered, was at 2.55 percent.
The department said the rate would be 4.1 percent if the effect of college testing programs — in which asymptomatic people can be tested repeatedly in an effort to rapidly identify new cases — is factored out.
The state’s alarming second surge appears to be on the wane. Cases and other metrics have been generally heading downward. But public officials are concerned about a possible resurgence due to new coronavirus variants, and they’re asking people to continue taking precautions and to get vaccinated when it’s their turn.
Martin Finucane can be reached at email@example.com.