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New coronavirus cases fell in PA over past week, reversing month-long trend

COVID-19 diagnoses and tests, over time. Source: PA Department of Health

New COVID-19 cases dipped in PA over the past week, reversing a month-long trend of increases week to week.

Over the past week, the commonwealth averaged 747 newly diagnosed cases per day, according to the state Department of Health.

This compares to an average 925 new daily cases last week and 870 new cases per day the week before. The department reports that testing has also increased (see chart).

Locally, diagnosed cases over the past week are as follows:

  • Adams County: 497 cases (prior Friday, 462)
  • Cumberland County: 1,276 cases (prior Friday, 1,203)
  • Dauphin County: 2,757 cases (prior Friday, 2,640)
  • Franklin County: 1,328 cases (prior Friday, 1,268)
  • Lancaster County: 5,822 cases (prior Friday, 5,525)
  • Lebanon County: 1,594 cases (prior Friday, 1,563)
  • Perry County: 121 cases (prior Friday, 113)
  • York County: 2,485 cases (prior Friday, 2,269)

Today, the department confirmed 758 newly positive cases throughout Pennsylvania for the past 24 hours ending at midnight.

With today’s update, 117,279 Pennsylvanians have now been diagnosed with the coronavirus, an increase of 5,231 over the past week, according to the health department.

Overall, 8.9 percent of PA residents tested have shown to be positive for the virus.

The department also reported an additional 108 deaths since last Friday, meaning that 7,297 Pennsylvanians have died from the disease since March.

Around central PA, the COVID-19 fatality data now stands as follows:

  • Adams County: 20 deaths (prior Friday, 20)
  • Cumberland County: 71 deaths (prior Friday, 70)
  • Dauphin County: 158 deaths (prior Friday, 155)
  • Franklin County: 46 deaths (prior Friday, 46)
  • Lancaster County: 410 deaths (prior Friday, 406)
  • Lebanon County: 54 deaths (prior Friday, 54)
  • Perry County: 5 deaths (prior Friday, 5)
  • York County: 86 deaths (prior Friday, 79)

Statewide, Philadelphia County continues to have the most confirmed cases with 26,419 cases, followed by Montgomery County with 10,015 cases. The two counties also have reported the most deaths statewide from the disease: 1,702 and 855, respectively.

“As the state has put in place new mitigation efforts to offset recent case increases, we must renew our commitment to protecting against COVID-19 by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and following the requirements set forth in the orders for bars and restaurants, gatherings and telework,” health Secretary Rachel Levine said.

Nursing homes and personal care facilities have been particularly hard hit by the virus. Of total deaths, 4,968, or 68 percent, have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities, according to the health department.

In nursing and personal care homes, there are 19,860 resident cases of COVID-19, and 4,122 cases among employees, for a total of 23,982 at 872 distinct facilities in 61 counties, according to the health department.

In addition, about 8,573 of total cases in PA are in health care workers.

Statewide, 1,316,899 coronavirus tests have been performed, with 1,199,629 people testing negative, according to the state health department. Last Friday, the state reported that 1,216,872 people had been tested for the virus.

Of the patients who have tested positive to date, the age breakdown is as follows, according to the health department:

  • 1 percent are aged 0-4
  • 1 percent are aged 5-12
  • 3 percent are aged 13-18
  • 9 percent are aged 19-24
  • Nearly 38 percent are aged 25-49
  • Nearly 23 percent are aged 50-64
  • 24 percent are aged 65 or older.

Most of the patients hospitalized are 65 or older, as are most of the reported deaths, according to the state. However, the health department has emphasized that, increasingly, more younger people are being diagnosed with COVID-19.

Levine continued to emphasize that Pennsylvanians should do the following:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
  • Cover any coughs or sneezes with your elbow, not your hands.
  • Clean surfaces frequently.
  • Stay home to avoid spreading COVID-19, especially if you are unwell.
  • Wear a mask whenever out of your house.

“Pennsylvania has been a model for the country on how to reopen effectively using a careful, measured approach,” Levine said. “However, we know the virus has not gone away as we see cases rise, so we must work together to stop another surge.” 

For more information, visit the PA Department of Health’s COVID-19 website.

Currently, we are providing a COVID-19 update weekly, each Friday, or as breaking news warrants.

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