Gov. Wolf, Sec. of Health to Discuss New PA COVID Surge at Press Conference Today, Watch it Live
HARRISBURG (JUL 15 2020) - Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine earlier this week warned that the state "is on the verge of repeating the pattern that led to widespread community shut-downs in the spring to mitigate COVID-19." With nearly 1,000 new cases being reported again today (the Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed 994 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 97,665.), and 5,372 over the last seven days, Governor Tom Wolf will join Levine at a press conference this afternoon "to discuss the recent surge in cases and how the commonwealth can mitigate them", according to a release from the governor's office. The press conference will be live-streamed for public viewing. Viewing information is at the end of this report.
Allegheny is reporting an increase of 246 cases and Philadelphia is reporting an increase of 135 cases.
The number of tests administered within the last 7 days (July 8 - 14) is 139,819 with 5,372 positive cases. Yesterday, close to 28,800 COVID-19 diagnostic test results were reported to the department, the highest one-day number of COVID-19 diagnostic test results reported. Monroe County had eight new cases and two new deaths reported yesterday, for totals of 1,482 and 113, respectively.
The recent rise in new cases statewide, but particularly in the Pittsburgh and Philadelphia areas, and the increase in cases among college age residents, caused Levine to issue her warning earlier this week. “At the start of the pandemic, we saw a higher number of cases in people ages 19-49, before it spread to those over age 65,” Levine said on Monday. “This pattern is now repeating. There are things we can do right now to stop this cycle, beginning with wearing a mask, staying at least six feet away from others not in your household, and maintaining healthy habits like washing your hands.”
“Our experience from the beginning of the pandemic shows that first cases rose in younger people, some of whom became very sick, required hospitalization and went on to recover,” Levine said. “Then COVID-19 spread quickly throughout the community, impacting congregate settings like nursing homes where most of our serious illnesses and deaths have occurred.”
Levine encouraged residents to make the choice and avoid situations where they could be exposing themselves to COVID-19.
“If you feel uncomfortable with how close people are at the restaurant where you are dining, make the choice to leave,” Dr. Levine said. “If you are in a store where people are not following the mandatory mask order, make the choice to leave. And if you are getting together with people who are bragging that they are not changing their lifestyle at all and refusing to wear a mask, make the choice not to go.”
Levine encouraged residents to make the choice and avoid situations where they could be exposing themselves to COVID-19. “If you feel uncomfortable with how close people are at the restaurant where you are dining, make the choice to leave,” Dr. Levine said. “If you are in a store where people are not following the mandatory mask order, make the choice to leave. And if you are getting together with people who are bragging that they are not changing their lifestyle at all and refusing to wear a mask, make the choice not to go.”
At today's press conference, Wolf and Levine will be will be joined via Skype by Dr. David Rubin, a general pediatrician and director of PolicyLab at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, whose team developed a unique COVID-19 tracking and projection model, which sheds light on the risk of a COVID-19 resurgence in Pennsylvania. The press conference is scheduled to begin at 3:30 this afternoon and can be viewed at these livestream locations online: Public Live Streams:
Symptoms of COVID-19 can include:
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Repeating shaking with chills
New loss of taste or smell
Symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure. Reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill and dying.