Although the number of new COVID-19 cases remained fairly stable over the past week, the portion of all tests coming back as “positive” dropped below 6% for the first time since late October.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health’s Early Warning Monitoring Dashboard showed a 5.7% positivity rate for the seven-day period through Thursday. That’s down from 6.2% for the previous seven days.

The health department has noted a positivity percentage above 5% is cause for concern.

Pennsylvania’s positivity rate peaked at 16.2% for the first full week of December.

There were a total of 13,275 new cases of COVID-19 over the most-recent seven-day period, 19 fewer than the 13,294 over the previous seven days. Allegheny County recorded 125 fewer new cases over the week and Philadelphia had 155 more new cases.

Most local counties have positivity rates below the state average.

Cambria County’s positivity rate was 3.2%, down from 5.2% from the previous seven days.

Somerset County’s rate was 2%, down from 3.5%.

Bedford County’s rate was 4.6%, up from 4.2%.

Blair County’s rate was 4.4%, up from 4.2%.

Indiana County’s rate was 2.8%, down from 4.6%.

Clearfield County’s rate was 6.1%, up from 4.6%.

Centre County’s rate was 5.6%, down from 7.7%.

Westmoreland County’s rate was 6.2%, up from 5.6%.

Friday’s update showed 2,757 additional positive cases and 43 new deaths, bringing the statewide totals to 944,196 cases and 24,262 deaths attributed to COVID-19.

The seven-day rolling average continues to hover in the mid-2,000s, coming in at 2,551 average cases a day on Friday.

There were four deaths across the eight-county region, including one new death each in Cambria and Clearfield counties and two from Westmoreland County.

Cambria County added 13 cases, Somerset added nine, Bedford added 11, Blair added 17, Indiana added five, Clearfield added 22, Centre added 43 and Westmoreland added 95 new COVID-19 cases.

Randy Griffith is a multimedia reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. He can be reached at 532-5057. Follow him on Twitter @PhotoGriffer57.

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