A message from Governor Janet Mills
Time and again, Maine people have risen to the challenges put in front of us. We have survived blizzards, ice storms, depressions, booms and busts. We’ve suffered loss — as a state and as families. We have conquered them because we are a strong, resilient people – borne of the western foothills; the northern potato fields; the bold, rocky coasts; and the tall, pine forests. We have been lifted up by the courage, conviction and resilience that comes from loving a place and its people. Let us continue to prepare, take every precaution, remain both careful and compassionate. We will get through this.
What you need to know
Last updated Nov. 22, 2020
- Nov. 20: Governor Janet Mills is dedicating an additional $6.2 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds to MaineHousing’s COVID-19 Rental Relief Program. MaineHousing will extend the program through December.
- Nov. 19: To slow the spread of COVID-19, all outdoor and indoor amusement venues, movie theaters, performing arts venues, casinos, and businesses that provide seated food and drink service, including social clubs, restaurants, and bars and tasting rooms currently open for outdoor service, will close for the night by 9:00 p.m. from November 20, 2020, through Sunday, December 6, 2020.
- Nov. 13: Given recent public health data, Governor Mills has announced that Massachusetts is no longer exempt from Maine’s quarantine or negative test requirement effective Nov. 16. People coming here from Massachusetts must either quarantine for 14 days or receive a negative COVID-19 test with a sample taken no longer than 72 hours from arrival in Maine. This applies to Maine residents returning from Massachusetts as well.
- Nov. 12: The Maine Department of Health and Human Services announced that the first 10 of up to 65 Walgreens pharmacy locations that will offer free drive-through rapid COVID-19 antigen testing to people in Maine experiencing symptoms of the virus.
- Nov. 5: Governor Mills has announced an Executive Order requiring Maine people to wear face coverings in public settings, regardless of the ability to maintain physical distance. The new order strengthens an earlier one stating that face coverings must be worn only when physical distancing is difficult to maintain.
- Nov. 1: In response to surging cases of COVID-19 in Maine and the nation, Gov. Mills is extending funding for response efforts by municipalities and tribes; postponing the start of indoor service in bars and tasting rooms; and effective Nov. 4, returning indoor gatherings to the prior limit of 50 and ending the testing/quarantine exemption for travel to/from Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. Read the full announcement here.
- Oct. 29: Gov. Mills has extended the State of Civil Emergency in Maine through Nov. 27. This allows Maine to draw down critical Federal resources and to deploy all available tools to respond to and contain COVID-19.
- Oct. 6: Maine has entered Stage 4 of its Restarting Maine's Economy plan, which includes guidance on winter capacity limits for businesses and strengthened measures on wearing cloth face coverings to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
For prior response items, please visit the COVID-19 response timeline.
Maine’s COVID-19 Response
See the latest news releases, radio addresses, executive orders from Gov. Janet Mills, as well as a timeline of the administration's response to COVID-19.
Maine’s CDC updates COVID-19 cases on its website every day. Dr. Nirav Shah, Maine CDC director, holds a live public briefing each Tuesday and Thursday. Watch here or visit MainePublic on YouTube to view past briefings.
Travel and Visitor Information
The Keep Maine Healthy plan aims to protect Maine people, protect visitors, and support Maine small businesses by reducing, to the greatest extent possible, COVID-19 risks associated with travel.
The plan relies on three cornerstones: 1) testing that encourages all visitors to “know before you go”; 2) screening for symptoms among travelers; and 3) engaging Maine communities to promote COVID-19-prevention best practices and public health education.
States Exempted From Quarantine or Testing Requirements
- New Hampshire
Maine considers a number of quantitative and qualitative measures in making this determination, which is designed to protect public health.
The State will continue to evaluate exemptions based on public health information.
To receive updates on Maine’s response to COVID-19, text MECOVID to 898-211 to sign up.
A-Z Agency Directory
Every state agency is responding to challenges from COVID-19. Explore this directory of state resource pages to find the answers or support you need.
Stay Healthy, Stay at Home
For more on keeping yourself and your loved ones healthy, visit the Maine CDC.
Know the symptoms
Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, shortness of breath, and lower respiratory distress,and may appear 2-14 days after exposure. If you, or someone you know, is exhibiting these symptoms, contact your medical provider.
Gov. Mills has issued a “Stay Safer at Home” Order for all Maine people. All out-of-state travelers coming into Maine, and Maine residents returning to Maine, must either receive a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours prior to arrival or complete a 14-day quarantine, per the Keep Maine Healthy plan.
Take every precaution
Stock up on supplies, including daily medications. If you must leave your home for an essential reason, stay 6 feet away from other people. Maine has mandated wearing a cloth face covering (PDF) in public settings. Wash your hands often, and for at least 20 seconds. Cover all coughs and sneezes.
In addition to orders from physicians, the State now allows anyone with elevated risk of COVID-19 to receive a test without an physician order. It remains advised to contact your medical provider to determine whether you should be tested, and to find your nearest testing location.
Meeting Basic Needs
Apply for assistance
The Department of Health and Human Services administers several critical assistance programs to aid Mainers harmed by COVID-19 (PDF), which support food security, health care, emergency benefits and more. To learn more and apply, visit MyMaineConnection.
Arrange for child care
Licensed child care is available. To find options near you, follow this guidance (PDF). If you need help to afford child care, visit the Child Care Subsidy Program. For updates on how COVID-19 is affecting child care in Maine, visit the visit the DHHS Office of Child and Family Services.
Organizations that serve Maine people through MaineCare can find the latest guidance on the state’s COVID-19 policy response and regulatory changes from the Department of Health and Human Services.
Support for Maine Workers
File for unemployment benefits online and explore enhanced programs available due to COVID-19 through the Maine Department of Labor. You do not need to do anything special for unemployment claims related to COVID-19. For questions, contact the Department of Labor online, or call through this alphabetical system due to high demand.
Guidance for employees
For answers to common questions about sick and family leave, Maine’s labor laws, and other work-related issues, visit the Maine Department of Labor’s Guidance on Coronavirus Response and Updates. For more information about how coronavirus is affecting federal wage and family and medical leave laws visit the U.S. Department of Labor.
For state workers
State of Maine employees seeking additional guidance should visit the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services’s Coronavirus Disease Guidance.
Support for Maine’s Economy
Maine Economic Recovery Support
Maine’s small businesses and their workers are the backbone of our economy. For the latest information on business supports, please visit the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development, the Small Business Administration, and the Finance Authority of Maine, or email email@example.com.
For information about the $200 million Maine Economic Recovery Grant program, please visit the grant program website.
Restarting Maine’s Economy
The Mills Administration has prepared a plan to gradually and safely restart Maine’s economy, which established four gradual stages of reopening.
Economic Recovery Committee
Gov. Janet Mills has created an Economic Recovery Committee to offer expert recommendations on sustaining and growing Maine's economy during and after COVID-19. Follow the committee's work and meeting schedule on its website.
Support for Students and Families
The Maine Department of Education, in collaboration with public health experts, created this framework for safely reopening Maine schools. The Department has also launched a dashboard tracking COVID-19 cases in Maine schools, available here.
University of Maine
The University of Maine System is updating its operations, policies and resources for students, faculty staff and families affected by COVID-19.
Use social media to connect with your friends, family and community, and follow Maine officials and agencies that are delivering important and timely COVID-19 information. Find who to follow here.