Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 positivity rate drops for second week in a row, despite increase in cases

Pennsylvania sees increase in COVID-19 cases, but positivity rate drops

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania’s positivity rate dropped for the second week in a row, the state’s Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine announced Monday while providing an update on COVID-19 across the state.

This week, the statewide positivity rate is 14.4%, which is down from last week’s 15%.

“Although I am grateful to see our statewide percent positivity decrease for yet another week in a row, we still have more work to do to keep our friends and loved ones safe from further spread across our communities,” Gov. Tom Wolf said in a release.

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Last week, Pennsylvania saw more than 1,000 more new cases compared to the previous week, with 42,322 total cases. That number included 5,128 kids between the ages of 5 and 18.

The state saw an increase for people who tested positive who reported going to a bar, going to a salon or barbershop, going to the gym or going to some other business. Pennsylvania saw a decrease in people who reported going to a restaurant or attending a mass gathering.

All 67 counties in Pennsylvania are in the substantial transmission status.

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Pennsylvania reported a 2-day total of more than 12,000 new coronavirus cases Monday, with 7,506 cases reported Sunday, and 5,338 cases reported Monday. This brings the statewide total COVID-19 cases to 726,154 since the pandemic began.

On Saturday, 103 additional deaths were reported, and 83 deaths were reported on Sunday for a total of 17,843 deaths across Pennsylvania attributed to COVID-19.

There are 3,392,246 individuals who have tested negative to date.

Since the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines were approved, healthcare workers and people who live in long-term care facilities are on the top of the list to be vaccinated in Pennsylvania.

They’re apart of the “1-A” category.

“1-B” is next, and that grouping includes people over 75 years old, and a number of different professions, like postal workers, first responders, and child care workers.

There’s no time frame on when “1-B” vaccinations will begin, but Levine did say the state is making preparations to start soon.

“I know It is challenging to have patience, but we must show patience as the amount of vaccine available to Pennsylvanian’s ins still extremely limited,” Levine said. “Right now, we are focusing on people 1A that we talked about, but we do anticipate moving statewide for vaccinations for 1B soon

As of now, Levine also said there is no plan to relax travel guidelines and they will be taking incident rates and vaccination rates into consideration when they look to ease restrictions.

But, there’s no telling on when that will happen.

Levine said she will be making an official statement when the state is ready to move on to grouping.

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