October 15, 2020 at 12:22 a.m. EDT
The coronavirus load in the DC region reaches a two-month peak; officials say small gatherings fuel growth
From Julie Zauzmer and Oveta Wiggins
The number of new coronavirus infections in the greater Washington region jumped to a two-month high on Wednesday, as a senior DC health official said small social gatherings helped spread the virus.
The seven-day moving average of new cases in Virginia, Maryland and the county was 1
,801, the highest of 1916 on August 13. The increase coincides with lower temperatures and an outbreak at the White House, although local health officials say any connection to the Rose Garden event in late September is unclear.
Among patients infected with the new coronavirus in the District of Columbia in the first week of October, nearly a quarter attended a social gathering of at least five people in the two weeks before they fell ill, LaQuandra Nesbitt, health director, said Wednesday. Every fifth person ate in a restaurant.