News

Drivers licenses to feature old photos

In order to protect residents and employees, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation announced that they will use existing photos on file for customers who renew their driver’s license.

“Using a customer’s existing photo will help limit the number of people in our driver and photo license centers, and by extension. help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19,” said Acting PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “This new process is not only a convenience, but it will held to keep our customers and staff safe.”

All customers who renew their driver’s license or photo ID card online or through the mail will receive a new product using the most recent photo of that individual that exists in PennDOT’s system. No camera cards will be issued to these customers, and they will receive their new product by mail within 15 days. The renewal process is complete when the final product is received.

Individuals who renewed their product on or before May 10 will receive a camera card in the mail and will need to visit a PennDOT Photo License Center to obtain an updated photo. For a list of reopened locations, visit www.dmv.pa.gov.

Pennsylvania added 837 new cases of the coronavirus on Friday. According to information released on Pa. Department of Health’s website, there are currently 57,991 confirmed cases.

Dauphin County added 21 cases and two deaths to its totals on Tuesday, while Schuylkill added six cases and a death, while Northumberland County added one case. Dauphin County currently stands at a total to 851 cases with 38 deaths, Schuylkill stands at 459 cases with 14 deaths, and Northumberland County, in the yellow phase of reopening, is at 126 confirmed cases.

In comparison, Philadelphia County, the hot spot of the state, added 210 cases and 14 deaths in 24 hours, putting their totals at 15,218 positive cases and 871 deaths.

In nursing home and long-term care facilities, Dauphin County is listed in the table having three facilities affected, with 194 cases among residents, 42 cases among employees and 26 deaths. Schuylkill County has 48 residents, 15 employees affected and two deaths in nine facilities. Northumberland County is back on the nursing home lists, with one patient in one facility

All total, 540 facilities are reporting 12,130 cases among residents and 1,724 among employees, and have accounted for 2,611 of Pennsylvania’s 3,806 deaths attributed to the coronavirus.

Officials say that the public’s effort on social distancing and wearing masks must continue to get things back to normal.

“As counties move from red to yellow, we need all Pennsylvanians to continue to follow the social distancing and mitigation efforts in place,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “We must continue to protect our most vulnerable Pennsylvanians, which includes our seniors, those with underlying health issues, our healthcare workers and our first responders. I am proud of the work that Pennsylvanians have done so far, but we cannot stop now, we must continue to take the necessary steps to protect ourselves from COVID-19.”

As far as negative tests for each county, Dauphin is listed as having 6,254 negative tests while Schuylkill reported 2,711 negative tests and 882 in Northumberland County.

The state also updated numbers of age ranges of the positive cases and hospitalizations to date. Currently 2,187 Pennsylvania residents are hospitalized with the virus and its complications, up 26 from Monday.

The breakdown is as follows:

Positive cases

Ages 0-4, <1%; 5-12, <1%; 13-18, 1%; 19-24, 6%; 25-49, 37%; 50-64, 26%, 65+, 28%

Hospitalizations

Ages 0-29, 2%; 30-49, 5%; 50-64, 10%; 65-79, 20%; 80+, 19%

The counties affected and the number of confirmed cases, with the number of deaths in parentheses, are:

Adams-167 (5), Allegheny-1,526 (127), Armstrong-55 (5), Beaver-493 (78), Bedford-29 (1),  Berks-3,453 (172), Blair-30, Bradford-37 (2), Bucks-4,116 (364), Butler-198 (6), Cambria-44 (1), Cameron-2 Carbon-198 (17), Centre-122 (2), Chester-1,929 (189), Clarion-23 (1), Clearfield-30, Clinton-41, Columbia-330 (28), Crawford-21, Cumberland-461 (33), Dauphin-851 (38), Delaware-5,084 (405), Elk-5 (1), Erie-124 (2), Fayette-85 (4), Forest-7, Franklin-522 (12), Fulton-8, Greene-27 (1), Huntingdon-190, Indiana-76 (5), Jefferson-7, Juniata-94 (1), Lackawanna-1,211 (124), Lancaster-2,295 (168), Lawrence-71 (7), Lebanon-825 (17), Lehigh-3,286 (123), Luzerne-2,449 (120), Lycoming-132 (5), McKean-8 (1), Mercer-77 (2), Mifflin-52, Monroe-1,229 (64), Montgomery-5,442 (534), Montour-49, Northampton-2,499 (161), Northumberland-126, Perry-35 (1), Philadelphia-15,218 (871), Pike-441 (21), Potter-4, Schuylkill-459 (14), Snyder-33 (1), Somerset-32 (1), Sullivan-1, Susquehanna-81 (13), Tioga-16 (1), Union-41 (1), Venango-7, Warren-1, Washington-126 (4), Wayne-117 (5), Westmoreland-419 (30), Wyoming-31 (3), York-793 (14).

As of noon May 12, there have been 237,989 negative tests for the coronavirus, 6,285 more than the day before.

What is coronavirus?

According to the Pa. Department of Health, coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common throughout the world. These viruses can live in animals and at times, evolve and infect people before spreading through human to human contact.

Human coronaviruses are spread just like the common cold or the flu — either through the air through coughing or sneezing, through close personal contact like touching or shaking hands, or by touching an object or surface with the virus on it.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. The symptoms can appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after a person is exposed to the illness. Reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to severe illness and death. As of May 7, the U.S. Center for Disease Control reports there have been 1,324,488 cases of the Coronavirus reported in the U.S. with 79,756 deaths.

What can you do?

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.
If you must go out for a life-sustaining reason, please wear a mask.
The Pa. Department of Health offers these guidelines as the COVID-19 crisis continues.

Stay home as much as possible. Try to get groceries once per week instead of daily. Freedom of travel remains, but please refrain from non-essential travel. Essential travel includes things like commuting to an essential job, picking up supplies like groceries and medicine, and checking on family and pets in other households. Do not host or attend gatherings.