The Daily Item
The state Department of Health reported 5,610 new COVID-19 infections on Saturday.
It was the fourth consecutive day with more than 5,000 and the sixth time in the first nine days of October to surpass that mark. The state is averaging 5,057 new infections per day this month, the highest monthly average since January (6,545).
There have been 45,517 infections in the first nine days of October. In all of last October there were 50,030.
The state recorded zero new COVID-19-related deaths in its midday report on Saturday, ending a streak of four consecutive days with 80 or more. It was the first time since Sept. 12 there were no deaths reported in the state.
There have been 419 COVID-19 deaths reported in the state in the last week, 59 more than reported the previous seven days. There have been 507 deaths in the first nine days of October. There were 670 in all of October 2020.
Infections remained high in the Valley. There were 115 new infections in the four counties, the third consecutive day with at least that many and the 19th straight day with at least 57.
Northumberland County posted 71 new cases, the second straight day with more than 70. Daily case totals haven’t been that high in Northumberland County since March.
There were also 22 new cases in Union County, 15 in Snyder and seven in Montour County.
There were no new deaths in the Valley, ending a streak of four consecutive days with at least one new death being attributed to COVID-19.
All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have high levels of community transmission of COVID, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which means they are all seeing at least 100 new cases per 100,000 residents over the previous seven days.
According to state data, more than 13 million COVID vaccine doses have been administered in Pennsylvania and 69.4 percent of residents 18 and older are fully vaccinated.
HospitalizationsAs of noon Saturday, there were 2,929 patients in Pennsylvania hospitals with COVID-19 symptoms, down 1 from Friday and down 72 in two days.
Of those hospitalized, 674 were being treated in intensive care units (ICUs) — down six since Friday’s report — and 379 were being treated on ventilators, down 4.
According to data provided by the state, there were 120 patients undergoing treatment in Valley medical facilities for COVID-19, an increase of three over Friday’s report and the third daily increase in the last four days. There were 20 patients in intensive care units at Geisinger in Danville — down one — nine at Evangelical Community Hospital near Lewisburg, and none at Geisinger-Shamokin.
Geisinger’s Danville location was also treating 13 on ventilators, an increase of five. Evangelical was treating two patients on ventilators, the same number as reported Friday.
At Geisinger’s main campus in Danville, there were 72 COVID-19 positive patients, an increase of four. There were 36 patients at Evangelical — a decrease of two — and 12 at Geisinger-Shamokin, an increase of one since Friday.
According to Evangelical hospital, 73.7 percent of hospitalized patients and 88.9 percent of patients in its ICU were unvaccinated as of Friday, including both patients on a ventilator.
Prisons, state facilitiesThere were four active staff cases at the State Correctional Institution (SCI) in Coal Township as of Saturday morning. There were 110 staff cases statewide, including 15 at SCI Cambria. There were 38 active inmate cases statewide, none at Coal Township and 20 at SCI Smithfield
There were eight active cases at federal prisons in Union County — even with Friday’s report — including six inmate cases at the low-security unit in Allenwood and one staff case each at the medium security prison and USP Allenwood. There were no cases at USP-Lewisburg.
The state Department of Human Services (DHS) was still reporting 18 active cases among staffers at the Selinsgrove Center on Thursday. There were less than five cases among persons receiving services. The DHS does not specify numbers when they are fewer than five to avoid identifying patients.
There were six staff cases and less than five client cases at Danville State Hospital for the second consecutive day.
There were less than five youth cases at the North Central Secure Treatment Unit (NCSTU) for girls on Saturday. There were no staff cases in the unit and no cases in the NCSTU boys unit.