Pennsylvania Health Secretary Sees Fall Resurgence of COVID-19 Cases
Dr. Rachel Levine says the state is more prepared than it was in the spring and there are no plans, as of now, to impose a statewide stay-at-home order.
For nine days in a row, Pennsylvania has recorded over 1,000 new cases of COVID-19, a statistic state Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine says indicates that a fall resurgence of the virus is underway.
During a press conference Wednesday, Levine says that unlike in the spring, the state is more prepared for a surge in new cases and there are no plans to impose another statewide stay-at-home order or business restrictions on restaurants and bars “at this time.”
“Our healthcare system is reporting it still has significant capacity available,” Levine says. She also notes that many new cases are being traced to small gatherings, something that is being reported in other states.
The department also is preparing for the distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine, once it is approved. The health department also announced that the first allotment of federally-supplied rapid antigen test cards is being distributed to counties that are seeing increased cases of COVID-19.
“With the increase in testing and cases, the department is continuing efforts to conduct case investigations and contact tracing,” Levine says. “However, for these efforts to be successful, it is important for Pennsylvanians to participate in the process. If you are contacted by a case investigator or contact tracer, it is essential that you answer the phone and participate in the interview.”
Levine also says the flu season officially began in Pennsylvania on Sept. 26 with 17 confirmed cases in 10 counties but that hospitalizations for flu-like symptoms remain low.