Levine says organized team sports to remain on hold in Pennsylvania until 'green phase'

The (Carlisle) Sentinel (TNS)
Pennsylvania Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine.

Organized team sports will remain on standby in Pennsylvania.

Even though the state Department of Health Friday upgraded 24 counties in the northcentral and northwestern parts of the state to the "yellow phase" (to start May 8) and will reduce restrictions brought on by COVID-19, Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine said Friday afternoon organized sports are far from ready to return.

Part of Gov. Tom Wolf’s effort to return Pennsylvania to a post-coronavirus normal includes putting counties in one of three phases (red, yellow, green), meant to define the coronavirus-based restrictions applied in those areas.

Team sports, according to the state, will not allowed in the "yellow phase."

“Organized sports are not going to be allowed under the 'yellow phase,'” Levine said on a daily coronavirus press briefing. “We’d have to wait to the 'green phase' for that to be allowed. As the governor has been saying, yellow means caution, and it would not be an exercise of caution to let team sports play.”

More:Sunday update: 15 new cases of COVID-19 in York County

More:While others begin easing COVID-19 restrictions, York County still in 'red phase'

York County remains in the red phase past May 8, with no specific timetable for when reducing restrictions will be approached again. Wolf has said easing restrictions for counties still in the "red phase" will be approached again in the next couple weeks.

No estimate was given for when any county could jump to the "green phase."

The initial pitch from Wolf specified that regions must have fewer than 50 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past 14 days.

On Friday, Wolf said that Bradford, Cameron, Centre, Clarion, Clearfield, Clinton, Crawford, Elk, Erie, Forest, Jefferson, Lawrence, Lycoming, McKean, Mercer, Montour, Northumberland, Potter, Snyder, Sullivan, Tioga, Union, Venango, and Warren counties will be moving into the "yellow phase" May 8.

All the other counties are still following the stay-at-home orders.