The Lead

COVID-19 in Pa.: Health Dept. confirms 5,676 new cases, 180 new deaths

By: - December 1, 2020 12:15 pm

Nearly 1,000 people are in hospital intensive care units statewide as Pennsylvania’s fall surge of COVID-19 cases continues seemingly unabated, according to new state data.

As of midday Tuesday, the state Health Department confirmed 5,676 new cases of the virus and confirmed 180 new fatalities. That brings the statewide tally since the start of the pandemic to 367,140 cases in all 67 counties, and a total of 10,563 deaths attributed to the pandemic, the Health Department said.

Statewide, 4,631 people were hospitalized because of the virus, with 970 patients in hospital intensive care units. On Monday, Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine warned that ICU units were “strained” by the current case load.

“We are going to be watching this data very closely. We watch all of the data, but particularly the hospitalization data, the intensive care unit data,” Levine told reporters in an online news conference Monday, the Morning Call of Allentown reported.

According to the Health Department, “the trend in the 14-day moving average of number of hospitalized patients per day has increased by nearly 3,200 since the end of September.” The statewide positivity rate for the week of Nov. 20 to Nov. 26 stood at 11.7 percent, the agency said in a statement.

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John L. Micek
John L. Micek

A 3-decade veteran of the news business, John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's Editor-in-Chief. An award-winning political reporter, Micek’s career has taken him from small town meetings and Chicago City Hall to Congress and the Pennsylvania Capitol. His weekly column on U.S. politics is syndicated to 800 newspapers nationwide by Cagle Syndicate. He also contributes commentary and analysis to broadcast outlets in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. Micek’s first novel, “Ordinary Angels,” was released in 2019 by Sunbury Press.

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