PA Schools & Businesses Closed 'Indefinitely', Stay at Home Order Extends to April 30 in 26 Counties
HARRISBURG (MAR 30 2020) -- Pennsylvania is ramping up its COVID-19 mitigation efforts by ordering all non-essential businesses and schools to remain closed "indefinitely". Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced the extended closures at a press conference this afternoon. The governor also extended his stay at home order to 26 counties and the target end date from April 6 to April 30, consistent with yesterday's extension of the national social distancing recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control. After 17 consecutive daily increases of 30% or more, Pennsylvania has now had three days in a row of increases between 20 and 30%. The new cases added as of midnight last night were 693 over 59 counties, for a total of 4,087. Pennsylvania has seen 48 COVID-19 patients die, and 386 hospitalized. Of those hospitalized, 110 have required ICU beds, while 67 have needed ventilators. Statewide, there are about 4,000 ventilators. Monroe County now has 182 acknowledged COVID-19 cases, with 7 deaths. The state Department of Health today said that 4% of Pennsylvania's COVID-19 cases are health care workers and that fewer than 1% are in senior housing facilities. Over half of Pennsylvania's cases are persons under 49, and the hospitalizations of persons under 49 are roughly the same number as those between 50 and 64. A department spokesperson said that youth vaping appears to be linked to a higher rate of infection among Pennsylvania's younger population. A list of Pennsylvania cases and deaths by county is provided by the Department of Health HERE.