State says 68% of patients who had COVID-19 have recovered

Tina Locurto
York Dispatch

Approximately 68% of patients statewide who had COVID-19 have recovered, the state Department of Health reported Wednesday afternoon.

State officials are continuing to analyze trends of new cases as some counties prepare to move from the yellow to the green phase of Gov. Tom Wolf's reopening plan, said Dr. Rachel Levine, the state health secretary. York County remains in the yellow phase.

Also Wednesday, Wolf announced he renewed the 90-day disaster declaration he originally signed on March 6, but the stay-at-home order will be allowed to expire Thursday. The stay-at-home order was only in effect in counties that remain in the red phase, and all counties will be moved to the yellow or green phase on Friday, he said.

"We'll be looking at the numbers of new cases (and) the incident rate or the number of cases per capita," Levine said during a call with members of the media. "We'll discuss that with the governor, who makes the final decisions of counties that go from yellow to green."

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A patient is considered recovered if it has been 30 days since the date of a patient's first positive test and the case has not been reported as a death, according to the department.

The renewed emergency disaster declaration provides for increased support to state agencies involved in the response of the virus and in recovery for the state during reopening, according to a news release.

As of noon Wednesday, there were nine new positive cases of COVID-19 in York County, bringing the overall total to 1,037. At the state level, an additional 511 cases bumped the overall total to 73,405 in all 67 counties.

Ann Elliott, R.N., left, and clinical operations coordinator and patient safety officer Jennifer Strayer work together at the drive up COVID-19 coronavirus testing site at WellSpan Family Medicine - Cape Horn in Windsor Township, Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Candidates must be directed to the facility for testing by a physician prior to arrival. Dawn J. Sagert photo

Officials reported one new virus-related death in York County, bringing the total to 27. Statewide, there were 75 new deaths, bringing the death toll to 5,742.

There are 24 intensive care unit beds, 110 medical or surgical beds and 36 airborne isolation room beds available in York County hospitals as of Wednesday, according to hospital data. 

Four COVID-19 patients are on ventilators, with 140 still available, according to the state health department website.

Approximately 408,269 patients have tested negative in Pennsylvania, including 14,563 people in York County.

Most of the patients hospitalized are 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older. There have been no pediatric deaths in Pennsylvania, health officials said.

The department provided this breakdown of ages for those who have tested positive:

  • Nearly 1% are 4 or younger;
  • Nearly 1% are ages 5-12;
  • 2% are ages 13-18;
  • Nearly 6% are ages 19-24; 
  • 37% are ages 25-49; 
  • Nearly 25% are ages 50-64; and
  • Nearly 28% are 65 or older.

— Reach Tina Locurto at or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.