Indiana County has its first coronavirus case and Somerset and Clearfield counties are reporting their second cases.
There are now more than 1,000 people in Pennsylvania who have been diagnosed with coronavirus, the Health Department announced Wednesday.
Wednesday’s update added 276 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 1,127 in 44 counties.
Indiana’s positive test is not listed in Wednesday’s daily report. Indiana Regional Medical Center's Mark Richards said the notification arrived Wednesday. The Health Department’s online report is updated at noon each day with the latest figures from midnight.
“We have received results back from the (Health Department),” Richards said in an email. “We have our first positive case in Indiana County.
“Patient has been notified, has been in self-quarantine since March 16 and has not required hospitalization.”
No other details were released.
New positive tests in Somerset County and Clearfield County are included in the Health Department report.
Both counties reported their first cases Tuesday.
All people are either in isolation at home or being treated at the hospital, Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine said during her daily press briefing.
The state’s death toll rose to 11 on Wednesday, with four more fatalities reported. Northampton County reported its third death and Lackawanna County has its second. Luzerne County and Philadelphia each reported their first death.
No information was released on the newest Somerset County patient. The county’s first confirmed COVID-19 patient was announced Tuesday. Conemaugh Medical Center confirmed the adult was being treated by teams from Conemaugh Meyersdale Medical Center and Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, but was ultimately transferred to a non-Conemaugh facility for continuing care.
Gov. Tom Wolf announced new restrictions at the press briefing Wednesday, ordering residents of Lehigh and Northampton counties to stay home.
Before Wednesday, Wolf’s orders covered eight counties, including Philadelphia, Allegheny County and Philadelphia’s four heavily populated suburban counties. The 10 counties account for half of Pennsylvania’s 12.8 million residents and are home to nearly 80% of the state’s confirmed coronavirus cases.
Levine described the state’s work to identify capacity, supplies and equipment to prepare hospitals for an anticipated surge in patients. There are about 3,400 intensive care beds licensed in Pennsylvania, and about 40% are currently available.
The state had more than 1 million N95 surgical masks, which offer health care workers the greatest protection against the virus. Some of those have been distributed to hospitals, and the state is working to procure more, Levine said.
There are about 3,000 ventilator devices in the state, about 75% currently available.
The supplies on hand and on their way to Pennsylvania may not be enough if people don’t do their part, Levine said.
“These mitigation efforts that the governor has announced are critical to preventing a large surge of patients over the next month that could, in theory, overwhelm the health care system,” she said.
Wolf also emphasized the social distancing recommendations and directives.
“Staying at home is vital to saving lives in our commonwealth,” Wolf said. “If our number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase at its current rate, our hospitals soon be overwhelmed. We need to buy time.
“All of us must do our part.”