Commonwealth COVID cases climb ‘significantly’

Spread stays ‘moderate’ in Wayne and Pike

By OWEN WALSH
Posted 11/23/20

According to Gov. Tom Wolf and Health Secretary Rachel Levine’s weekly COVID-19 update on November 23, the commonwealth had seen a seven-day case increase of 36,133 cases, statewide percent positivity of 11.1 percent, and a “concerning” 63 out of 67 counties with substantial transmission status.

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Commonwealth COVID cases climb ‘significantly’

Spread stays ‘moderate’ in Wayne and Pike

Posted

PENNSYLVANIA — According to Gov. Tom Wolf and Health Secretary Rachel Levine’s weekly COVID-19 update on November 23, the commonwealth had seen a seven-day case increase of 36,133 cases, statewide percent positivity of 11.1 percent and a “concerning” 63 out of 67 counties with substantial transmission status.

The vast majority of counties now have a positivity rate of more than 10 percent, the threshold at which the Department of Health deems community transmission substantial.

Fortunately for locals, Wayne and Pike counties were the only two counties rated “moderate” for community spread of the virus. Cameron and Sullivan counties (not to be confused with Sullivan County, NY) were the only two considered to have low community spread.

But the numbers in Wayne and Pike are still higher than they used to be. According to the Department of Health’s Early Warning Monitoring System Dashboard—checked last Monday—over a seven day period, the number of confirmed cases in Wayne increased from 26 to 42, it’s positivity rate increased from 3.4 percent to 5.1 percent and the daily average of COVID-19-specific hospitalizations increased from 1.1 to 3.4. Over that time period, zero residents were put on ventilators, according to state data.

In Pike County, over the same seven-day period, confirmed cases increased from 42 to 53 and the positivity rate increased from 7.7 to 8 percent. Hospital data is not available for Pike County as it doesn’t have its own hospital.

Wayne Memorial Hospital public relations manager Lisa Champeau said that the hospital staff has not been overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases at this point.

“We have seen an uptick in testing, almost double last week what it had been the week before. We currently have six patients in our COVID unit, but this changes almost daily,” she said in an email on Monday. “It is still within what we can handle.”

Champeau added that the hospital has suspended visitation "except in special circumstances such as end-of-life or maternity" starting Wednesday, November 25.

Statewide, Levine has expressed concern that PA will run out of ICU beds if infection rates continue to climb at this rate.

“Another week of significant increases of COVID-19 across Pennsylvania is a call to action,” Wolf said. “We need Pennsylvanians to follow the most recent orders and wear a mask, social distance, avoid travel and gatherings and wash their hands.”

In an effort to curb holiday spikes, Wolf has announced a series of new and enhanced mitigation efforts, including banning alcohol sales after 5 p.m. only on  Wednesday, November 25.

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