The Daily Item
State Health officials recorded the second-highest number of new COVID-19 cases this month on Wednesday, while the 154 new local cases represent the largest increase since the last week in January.
DOH officials registered 7,569 new cases on Wednesday, the ninth day in a row with at least 5,000 new cases. The state’s rolling seven-day average for new cases sits at 6,149, the highest since mid-January.
Wednesday’s report pushed Pennsylvania to more than 1.7 million COVID cases since the pandemic began in March 2020.
There were also 98 deaths recorded statewide. There were no local deaths linked to COVID for the first time in 12 days.
Locally, there were 154 new cases in the latest data release, including 68 in Northumberland County, 38 in Snyder, 31 in Union and 17 in Montour.
All 67 Pennsylvania counties continued to see substantial community transmission of the disease, meaning at least 100 new cases per 100,000 residents over the previous seven days, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Nationwide, 73.03 percent of counties had high transmission rates. The CDC reported that 2.58 percent of counties nationwide were reporting low transmission.
State health officials reported that all 67 counties had at least one new case on Wednesday. Twenty-seven counties reported at least 100 new cases in the latest state data and 10 had at least 200.
In Pennsylvania, 73.7 percent of residents age 18 or older have been fully vaccinated and local facilities are scheduling smaller doses of the COVID vaccine for children ages 5-11. State health officials also announced Monday that more than 15 million vaccine doses have been administered, including 1.3 million boosters.
HospitalizationsAs of noon Wednesday, there were 3,386 patients hospitalized statewide with COVID-19 infections, up 37 from Tuesday. Hospitalizations increased by nearly 700 over the past 10 days. It is the highest number of hospitalizations statewide since the cases started to fall last spring.
Of those hospitalized statewide, 756 were being treated in intensive care units (ICUs), down seven, and 449 were being treated on ventilators, up 29.
According to data provided by the state, there were 148 patients undergoing treatment for COVID-19 in Valley medical facilities on Wednesday, down four. There were 30 patients in intensive care units at Geisinger in Danville, seven at Evangelical Community Hospital and six at Geisinger-Shamokin.
Geisinger’s Danville location was also treating 19 on ventilators and Evangelical was treating six, up one.
Of Evangelical’s 39 patients, 32 were not fully vaccinated, including six of seven in the ICU and five of six patients on a ventilator.
Systemwide, Geisinger has 235 COVID patients and 203 are not fully vaccinated. It is treating 63 patients in ICUs, 58 were not fully vaccinated and 40 of 42 patients on ventilators were not vaccinated.
At Geisinger’s main campus in Danville, there were 87 COVID-19 positive patients. There were 39 at Evangelical, down three, and 22 at Geisinger Shamokin.
Prisons, state facilitiesThere were 36 active COVID cases at the State Correctional Institution (SCI) in Coal Township on Wednesday, down two from previous reports. There were 182 staff cases statewide — up 11 — and 205 active inmate cases statewide, up one. Of the 36 cases at SCI-Coal Township, 26 were inmate cases; there were also 10 staff cases at the prison, down 10 from Tuesday.
According to the state Department of Human Services (DHS), there were no cases among persons receiving services ands six staff cases at the Selinsgrove Center. The DHS does not specify numbers when they are fewer than five to avoid identifying patients.
At the U.S. Penitentiary (USP) in Lewisburg, there was one active inmate case and no staff cases, according to the federal Bureau of Prisons. At the low-security unit in Allenwood, there are two inmate cases, along with one staff case.
There were less than five staff cases and no client cases at the Danville State Hospital.
At the North Central Secure Treatment Unit, there were six youth cases at the girls facility and no youth cases in the boys facility. Both facilities reported less than five staff cases.