Pennsylvania Coronavirus Cases Top 83,000, Deaths at 6,557

The number of new cases is the highest since June 12 but still well below the numbers throughout much of the spring. In April and early May, the state regularly reported more than 1,000 new cases each day. It’s been more than a month since the state has had 1,000 new COVID-19 cases in a single day.

by Ron Southwick, The Patriot-News, Harrisburg, Pa / June 25, 2020
Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine visit the Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center to thank health care workers for their efforts during the coronavirus pandemic, June 24, 2020 TNS
(TNS) - The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 579 new coronavirus cases Thursday, raising the statewide total to 83,770.

Across Pennsylvania, 6,557 deaths have been tied to COVID-19, including 39 new fatalities reported Thursday. More than two-thirds of the state’s coronavirus deaths have occurred in long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes.

The number of new cases is the highest since June 12 but still well below the numbers throughout much of the spring. In April and early May, the state regularly reported more than 1,000 new cases each day. It’s been more than a month since the state has had 1,000 new COVID-19 cases in a single day.

The health department released new statistics Thursday morning; the figures reflect cases and deaths reported as of midnight. The department said 621,031 patients have tested negative.
Fewer people are being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals. About 700 coronavirus patients are in the hospital, about a quarter of the peak, according to the health department. Most who are infected develop only mild symptoms, but the coronavirus poses a more serious threat to seniors and those with health complications.

On Friday, Gov. Tom Wolf will move 12 more counties, including the Philadelphia area, into the green phase.

These counties will move to the green phase Friday: Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Erie, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia and Susquehanna. While Philadelphia is approved for the green phase, city officials said they will maintain some restrictions until July 3.

By Friday, Lebanon County will be the only county in Pennsylvania in the yellow phase. The Wolf administration cited an uptick in cases and faulted Lebanon County officials for allowing businesses to open ahead of the state’s guidelines.

On Wednesday, Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine said a “combination of community spread” and cases in long-term care facilities are responsible for the recent high rate of increase in Lebanon County. And that’s why Lebanon hasn’t yet been given approval to enter the green phase, she said.
Lebanon County lawmakers and businesses sharply criticized the Wolf administration for not moving the county to the green phase.

Republican lawmakers argue the governor has moved too slowly to reopen the state. Earlier this month, the GOP-controlled General Assembly passed a resolution directing Wolf to end the state of emergency, which he extended earlier this month. Republican lawmakers have said based on the resolution, the state of emergency is over.

The state Supreme Court is expected to rule on the case before the end of the week.
 
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