Tuesday marked the deadliest day in Pennsylvania since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak as the Pennsylvania Department of Health reported an additional 78 deaths in 24 hours, raising the death toll related to the Coronavirus to 240 deaths in the state.
Philadelphia County reported an additional 30 deaths in the new updated at noon Tuesday, raising their total to 58 people. In nearby Montgomery County, 12 new deaths were reported, raising their total to 30 deaths since March 6.
Cambria, Columbia, Elk, and Jefferson counties reported their first deaths since the outbreak while deaths were reported in Allegheny, Beaver, Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lehigh, Luzerne, Monroe, Northampton, Pike, and York counties.
Governor Tom Wolf Monday urged Pennsylvania manufacturers that currently are producing or can pivot to producing COVID-19-related supplies to submit their information to the newly developed Pennsylvania Manufacturing Call to Action Portal.
“We’re asking everyone to do their part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, including ensuring that our health care system is prepared to care for patients and that there is access to critical personal protective equipment and products as more individuals and businesses take preventive measures,” Wolf said. “Throughout our commonwealth’s history, our manufacturing sector has answered the call to move us forward and contributed tremendously in times of turbulence. I call upon our private sector to be a part of the solution to this crisis.”
The portal will identify businesses’ critical supply chain capabilities, needs, workforce gaps and innovative opportunities. Reporting this important information and identifying both abilities and needs will help facilitate the connections businesses need to get critical COVID-19-related products to market or retrofit their operations to begin production of those products.
This manufacturing portal builds on the recent creation of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Critical Medical Supplies Procurement Portal to source the most needed supplies for medical providers, emergency responders, and health care professionals.
According to information released on Pa. Department of Health’s website April 7, there are currently 14,559 confirmed cases, a jump of 1,5,79 cases in 24 hours.
Dauphin County reported 23 new cases while 16 were added in Schuylkill County and seven more in Northumberland County, bringing Dauphin’s total to 155 cases with one death, Schuylkill up to 119 cases, and Northumberland to 22.
The biggest jump once again occurred in Philadelphia County, which reported 401 new cases, bringing their total to more than 4,000 in the county since the outbreak began.
“Now more than ever, as we continue to see COVID-19 cases and deaths rise in Pennsylvania, we need Pennsylvanians to take action,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Those actions should be to stay calm, stay home and stay safe. If you must go out, please limit it to as few trips as possible and wear a mask to protect not only yourself, but other people as well. We need all Pennsylvanians to heed these efforts to protect our vulnerable Pennsylvanians, and also our healthcare workers and front line responders.”
With commercial labs being the primary testing option for most Pennsylvanians, data is not available on the total number of tests pending.
The state also updated numbers are age ranges of the positive cases and hospitalizations to date. Approximately 1,319 people that have tested positive in Pennsylvania have been hospitalized.
The breakdown is as follows:
Ages 0-4, <1%; 5-12, <1%; 13-18, 1%; 19-24, 7%; 25-49, 42%; 50-64, 29%, 65+, 20%
Ages 0-4, <1%; 5-12, <1%; 13-18, <1%; 19-24, 1%; 25-49, 19%; 50-64, 29%; 65+, 51%
The counties affected and the number of confirmed cases, with the number of deaths in parentheses, are:
Adams-28, Allegheny-689 (6), Armstrong-18, Beaver-116 (9), Bedford-4, Berks-369 (4), Blair-6, Bradford-14, Bucks-690 (21), Butler-107 (2), Cambria-7 (1), Cameron-1 Carbon-67 (1), Centre-55, Chester-335 (6), Clarion-9, Clearfield-7, Clinton-3, Columbia-42 (1), Crawford-8, Cumberland-77 (2), Dauphin-155 (1), Delaware-898 (20), Elk-2, Erie-28, Fayette-32, Forest-5, Franklin-39, Fulton-1, Greene-15, Huntingdon-5, Indiana-21, Jefferson-1, Juniata-14, Lackawanna-235 (8), Lancaster-490 (14), Lawrence-29 (2), Lebanon-145, Lehigh-1,146 (10), Luzerne-982 (8), Lycoming-12, McKean-1, Mercer-26, Mifflin-6, Monroe-610 (12), Montgomery-1,359 (30), Montour-27, Northampton-774 (14), Northumberland-22, Perry-9 (1), Philadelphia-4,012 (58), Pike-136 (5), Potter-3, Schuylkill-119, Snyder-9 (1), Somerset-7, Sullivan-1, Susquehanna-11, Tioga-10, Union-7, Venango-5, Warren-1, Washington-57, Wayne-40, Westmoreland-177, Wyoming-5, York-218 (2).
As of noon March 31, there have been 75,845 negative tests for the coronavirus, an increase of 5,845 over 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,, 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 April 7, the U.S. Center for Disease Control reports there have been 374,329 cases of the Coronavirus reported in the U.S. with 12,064 deaths. Johns Hopkins University of Medicine reports on their Coronavirus Tracker website that 20,003 U.S. residents that have contracted the virus have recovered.
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 need to go out and will be around other people, 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.