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Health Department Reports 43 Additional COVID-19 Cases in Centre County

by on July 26, 2020 12:46 PM

Updated at 7:30 p.m. on July 26, 2020

Centre County saw a substantial increase in its COVID-19 case count on Sunday, with 43 additional positives reported by the Pennsylvania Department of Health. The previous largest single day increase was 11.

Since the first was reported on March 20, Centre County has had 356 COVID-19 cases. 

Mount Nittany Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. Nirmal Joshi said in an email that the State College-based health system immediately contacted DOH after seeing "an unusual spike" in the number of positive test results on Friday.

"We are collaborating with the department to investigate this sudden spike and to coordinate additional testing of these individuals," Joshi said. "We are expecting results to be returned in the next few days and we will continue to work closely with the department."

The county also had 131 new negative test results, which is about on par with the typical daily reports. A total of 7,754 patients in Centre County have tested negative for the virus.

"Statewide there were no delays in reporting or data dumps to contribute to the rise in cases," DOH spokesman Nate Wardle said in an email. "Preventing the spread of COVID-19 is essential to protecting the health of Pennsylvanians. We are continually monitoring increases in COVID-19 cases happening in Pennsylvania. Even small case increases are concerning and are being watched very carefully."

Centre County Board of Commissioners Chair Michael Pipe said he spoke with the governor's office on Sunday after seeing the numbers and was initially told the increase may in part have been the result of Friday's deadline for nursing homes in the state to test every resident and staff member. Pipe later said, however, the spike did not result from nursing home testing.

DOH data showed no change on Sunday for Centre County nursing home cases, which remained at 30 among residents and 18 among employees at three facilities. 

Two COVID-19 patients in Centre County are hospitalized as of 1 p.m. on Sunday, which is unchanged from Saturday.

Statewide, the health department reported 800 new positives reported on Sunday, bring the state's total to 107,425. Sunday's data included 148 new cases in Philadelphia and 133 in Allegheny County.

A total of 1,028,776 patients in Pennsylvania have tested negative, an increase of 12,071 since Saturday. Over the past seven days, 156,316 COVID-19 tests have been administered in Pennsylvania with 6,384 positive test results, according to DOH. 

An estimated 75% of COVID-19 patients in the state — about 80,569 — have recovered, according to a DOH calculation.

The health department also reported four new deaths attributed to the virus statewide, bringing Pennsylvania's total to 7,118. DOH has reported a total of nine COVID-19 deaths in Centre County, the most recent on July 16. The Centre County Coroner's Office has only confirmed six, the most recent of those on May 27. Because the health department lists deaths by county of residency, the coroner's office may not have been notified of resident deaths that occurred in other parts of the state.

Across Pennsylvania, 709 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized, with 95 requiring use of a ventilator.

Among the state's total cases 104,401 are confirmed and 3,024 are probable. In Centre County, 324 are confirmed and 32 are probable. 

All 43 cases reported for the county on Sunday were confirmed, according to DOH.

The health department's map of cases by zip code does not currently indicate where the bulk of new cases occurred.

Centre County's cases by zip code, according to available DOH data:

*Note: Specific numbers for zip codes with 1-4 cases are redacted by the health department.

16801 (State College): 68 confirmed [+4], 8 probable

16823 (Bellefonte): 57 confirmed [+4], 5 probable

16803 (State College): 47 confirmed [+3], 6 probable

16827 (Boalsburg): 15 confirmed

16866 (Philipsburg): 15 confirmed [+1]

16875 (Spring Mills): 15 confirmed, 1-4 probable

16841 (Howard): 14 confirmed, 1-4 probable

16870 (Port Matilda): 12 confirmed

16828 (Centre Hall): 10 confirmed [+2], 1-4 probable

16853 (Milesburg): 6 confirmed

16802 (University Park), 16820 (Aaronsburg), 16826 (Blanchard), 16829 (Clarence), 16832 (Coburn), 16844 (Julian), 16845 (Karthaus), 16851 (Lemont), 16852 (Madisonburg), 16854 (Millheim), 16856 (Mingoville), 16865 (Pennsylvania Furnace), 16868 (Pine Grove Mills), 16872 (Rebersburg), 16874 (Snow Shoe), 16877 (Warrior's Mark) and 16882 (Woodward) each have 1-4 confirmed or probable cases.

The health department added at least one case at University Park after having removed it from zip codes with cases on Friday.

Among Centre County's bordering counties, Huntingdon now has 285 [+6] total cases, Blair has 176 [+5], Union has 123 [+4], Clearfield has 116 [+2], Clinton has 110 [+3] and Mifflin has 91 [+2].

Geoff Rushton is managing editor for Contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @geoffrushton.
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