The Lead

Pa. Health Dept.: More than 4,500 new COVID-19 cases; More than 2,700 hospitalized

By: - October 29, 2021 12:09 pm

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed 4,506 new cases of COVID-19 in the commonwealth on Friday, up from Thursday’s tally of 4,312 new cases, bringing the total number of cases to 1.55 million since the start of the pandemic.

As of midday Friday, 2,738 individuals were hospitalized with the virus, a decrease over Thursday’s tally of 2,742 people. Of that number, 665 patients were in intensive care units, and 373 patients were using a ventilator, according to data posted to the agency’s pandemic tracking website.

The department also confirmed 85 new deaths attributed to COVID-19 as of midday Friday, bringing the total number of deaths attributed to the virus to 31,377 since the start of the pandemic, state data showed.

As of Friday, the statewide positivity rate was 9.2 percent, and 71.6 percent of Pennsylvanians 18 or older were fully vaccinated, according to the department.

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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.