Department of Health: 776 new positive cases of COVID-19 in PA; 28 new deaths

Coronavirus

The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported as of September 16th that there were 776 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 146,990.

The department also reported 28 new deaths, bringing the statewide total to 7,903 total deaths.

According to the department, the number of tests administered within the last 7 days between September 9 and September 15 is 173,790 with 5,855 positive cases. There were 24,442 test results reported to the department through 10 p.m., September 15. These results represent the total number of tests administered.

“We know that congregation, especially in college and university settings, yields increased case counts. The mitigation efforts in place now are essential to flattening the curve and saving lives,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, and following the requirements set forth in the orders for bars and restaurants, gatherings, and telework will help keep our case counts low. Together, as Pennsylvanians, all of our efforts are designed to support our communities to ensure that cases of COVID-19 remain low.”

Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Beginning August 29, the department began publishing COVID-19 case counts using the updated standardized case definition for COVID-19 from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists. This revised case definition updates criteria for case identification and case classification based on the continued evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic. It updates probable case classifications and adds suspect case classifications. The definition for confirmed cases using a positive PCR test has not changed. Viral antigen tests, which identify people who are likely currently infected, will now be considered a probable case, even if the individual has no symptoms or exposure history. Persons with a positive antibody (serology) test, moving forward, will no longer be considered a probable case. However, cases previously counted as probable cases, using the prior national case definition, will remain counted as probable cases. 

There are 205 cases who have a positive viral antigen test and are considered probable cases and 646 patients who have a positive serology test and either COVID-19 symptoms or a high-risk exposure.  There are 1,708,131 patients who have tested negative to date.

The department reports that most of the patients hospitalized are ages 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older. More data is available here.

The department is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19 to 24-year-olds. An alert was sent to healthcare providers about the changing COVID-19 case demographics, as there are more cases in younger age groups than in those 50-64 and 65+.

In nursing and personal care homes, there are 22,064 resident cases of COVID-19, and 4,806 cases among employees, for a total of 26,870. Out of Pennsylvania’s total deaths, 5,308 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities.

As of today, 10,204 of Pennsylvania’s total cases are in health care workers.

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Pennsylvania COVID-19 Map

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Health

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