As new COVID-19 case counts continue to decrease, Pennsylvania surpassed 27,000 deaths since the pandemic began in March 2020 on Saturday.
The state Department of Health registered another 1,658 cases on Saturday, the seventh day in a row with fewer than 2,000 new cases. There were another 39 deaths, pushing the total since last year to 27,029.
Locally, there were 23 new cases, including 11 in Northumberland County, six in Snyder and three each in Montour and Union counties.
On Friday, the state surpassed 10 million COVID-19 vaccinations and the number of patients hospitalized across the state due to complications from the novel coronavirus is at levels not seen since mid-October. More than 4.4 million Pennsylvanians are fully vaccinated.
On Saturday, the state’s rolling seven-day average of new cases increased slightly to 1,450.
Statewide percent positive test rate for the week ending Friday decreased to 4.5 percent, the fifth week in a row the positive rate has decreased. It is the lowest total since early October 2020.
HospitalsThe state reported 1,198 individuals were hospitalized with COVID-19 as of noon Saturday, down 52 from Friday. Of that total, 219 were in intensive care units (ICUs), down 11, and 181 were being treated on ventilators, down six.
It is the lowest number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 since mid-October
In the Valley, there were 51 patients hospitalized according to state data, level with Friday’s reportg. There were 42 patients at Geisinger in Danville, two at Geisinger-Shamokin and seven at Evangelical Community Hospital. Nineteen patients were being treated in the ICU — 15 in Danville and three at Evangelical and one in Shamokin — and six patients at Geisinger’s main campus in Danville were on ventilators.
Prisons and state centers
Active cases at state and federal prisons across the Valley increased slightly in Saturday’s report.
There were three active staff cases at federal prisons in Union County, one at USP-Allenwood and two USP-Lewisburg. There were no other active cases in the four prisons, according to the Bureau of Prisons.
At SCI-Coal Township, there were three cases — two inmates and one staffer — an increase of one resident case since Friday.. There have been three inmate COVID-19 deaths at the facility.