Oxford County has the second-most COVID-19 cases per capita since the start of the pandemic, after only Androscoggin County.

Oxford County’s positivity rate edged ahead of York County’s after a midweek bump in new cases. As of Thursday, Oxford County’s positivity rate was 854.6 cumulative cases per 10,000 residents.

Androscoggin County has the highest positivity rate by a significant margin. As of Thursday, there have been 976.9 cumulative cases per 10,000 residents.

York County, which now has the third-highest case count per capita in the state, stood at 853.9 cumulative cases per 10,000 residents.

The positivity rate is the cumulative count of all cases per capita and is an overall look at how many people in a region tested positive. The level of community transmission, or a seven-day average of new cases, are snapshot-in-time looks at how quickly the virus is spreading during a shorter period of time.

This comes as the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention is investigating at least nine outbreaks in the region, including seven at schools.

Seven Oxford County schools are in outbreak status, from Rumford-based Regional School Unit 10, Dixfield-based RSU 56 and South Paris-based School Administrative District 17, according to a Maine Department of Education dashboard that was updated Thursday afternoon.

Those schools, and the number of reported cases over the past 30 days, are:

• Buckfield Junior-Senior High School, in Buckfield, fewer than five cases.

Dirigo Elementary School, in Peru, fewer than five cases.

• Guy E. Rowe School, in Norway, 14 cases.

• Oxford Elementary School, in Oxford, 12 cases.

• Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, in South Paris, 32 cases.

• Oxford Hills Middle School, in South Paris, nine cases.

• Paris Elementary School, in South Paris, five cases.

The other outbreaks were at Rumford Community Home and the Paris Town Office.

Paris Town Manager Dawn Noyes said Wednesday that town offices would remain closed until at least next Tuesday, after several employees tested positive.

As of Thursday evening, 13 staff members and 52 residents at the Rumford Community Home have tested positive for the virus since Oct. 7, and four residents have died from it, a spokesperson for Central Maine Healthcare, the facility’s parent company, said.

Rumford Community Home is an 84-bed skilled nursing and assisted living facility.

Meanwhile, state health officials Thursday reported 551 new cases of COVID-19 in Maine, including 48 in Androscoggin County, 34 in Franklin County and 16 in Oxford County.

There were four additional deaths, two men and two women. One of the individuals was from Franklin County, one from Knox County and two from Oxford County.

Two of the deaths were individuals in their 60s, one in their 70s and one 80 years or older.

Within the tri-county region, COVID-19 is spreading at a faster rate in Franklin County than in Androscoggin and Oxford counties.

Franklin County reported 6.1 new daily cases of COVID-19 per 10,000 residents for the week ending Thursday. Androscoggin County’s seven-day average per capita was 3.5 per 10,000 residents and Oxford County’s was 4.6 per 10,000 residents.

Statewide, there were 3.4 new daily cases per 10,000 residents.

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