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Mass. begins reporting ‘probable’ coronavirus cases – The Boston Globe

The state reported Monday that the death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in Massachusetts had risen by 189 and that the number of cases had climbed by 3,840 as state officials announced they had begun including probable as well as confirmed cases in its tallies.

The new inclusion pushed the state’s death tally past 7,000 and the total number of cases past 100,000.

In terms of confirmed numbers, the state reported 48 new fatalities and 326 new cases.

The state said that, in using the new figures, it was following guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and trying to be transparent.

“Probable cases are individuals who have not been tested by the standard viral (molecular) test,” the posting said. “They have either 1) had a positive antibody test and either had COVID symptoms or were likely to be exposed to a positive case or 2) did not have an antibody test but had COVID symptoms and were known to be exposed to a positive case.”

“Probable cases also include individuals whose death certificate listed COVID-19 as a cause of death but who were not tested,” the state also said.

The probable cases were added after the state conducted a retrospective review of probable cases and deaths dating back to March 1, the Department of Public Health said.

This story will be updated.


Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter: @JaclynReiss

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