Coronavirus News & Updates

COVID-19 | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW FROM THE CDC.

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The latest on the coronavirus pandemic on the local front, updated daily, including the latest news.

Updated: 6/5/2020


 

From CNN: Confirmed coronavirus cases are rising faster than ever. New cases of the novel coronavirus are rising faster than ever worldwide, at a rate of more than 100,000 a day over a seven-day average. In April, new cases never topped 100,000 in one day, but since May 21, there have only been less than 100,000 on five days, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Newly reported cases reached a high of 130,400 on June 3. The increase in case rates may be partially explained by increases in testing capacity, but there’s still not enough testing to capture an accurate picture in many countries. Different nations’ epidemics have followed different trajectories. The number of new cases has slowed in many of the countries that were hit hard earlier on in the pandemic, including China, the US, UK, Italy, Spain and France. But many countries, particularly in South America, the Middle East and Africa, the rate of transmission still appears to be accelerating, according to a CNN analysis of Johns Hopkins University data.
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From WJPA News, June 5, 2000: Washington County Goes Green! Today is a day many in Washington County have been waiting for since the coronavirus pandemic lockdowns began in Pennsylvania. Under Governor Tom Wolf’s order, the county has now moved into the green phase of his reopening plan which means that restaurants and bars, hair salons, barbershops, gyms, spas, wellness facilities, casinos, theaters and shopping malls are all allowed to open, but they must limit occupancy to 50%. In addition, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines must continue to be followed and Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said people will still need to wear masks and still be vigilant to potential spread.  If you will be heading out to your favorite bar or restaurant over the weekend, be aware that the bar or restaurant you left in March might not look like the same one you’ll be entering on Friday.  In addition to the governor’s guidelines, the state liquor control board has also issued guidelines in the interest of patron’s safety.

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From WJPA News: Washington County Gets “Green Light” … Gov. Tom Wolf announced that a number of counties will transition into the green phase, the phase with the fewest restrictions in the governor’s stoplight-colored three-phase reopening plan, starting next Friday, June 5th. Sixteen counties in western and central Pennsylvania, including much of the Pittsburgh area, will move into the green phase and they include Allegheny, Armstrong, Bedford, Blair, Butler, Cambria, Clinton, Fayette, Fulton, Greene, Indiana, Lycoming, Mercer, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland counties.

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From WJPA News: Restaurants In Yellow-Phase Can Begin Outdoor Dining. In a significant loosening of coronavirus restrictions, Gov. Tom Wolf on announced that restaurants in yellow-phase Pennsylvania counties as of June 5th can begin outdoor dining, with appropriate precautions. Prior to his order, restaurants in yellow-phase counties were only allowed to do take-out and delivery business. Guidance issued by his administration for outdoor dining includes maximum occupancy limits; a requirement that indoors areas remain closed except for “through traffic”; and that customers being served outside must be seated at a table. Currently, 49 counties statewide are in the yellow phase, and 18 of those are set to move to the less-restrictive green phase on Friday, June 5th. More information on the state’s reopening plan can be found at this link: www.governor.pa.gov/process-to-reopen-pennsylvania/.

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From CNN: Brazil’s travel ban. These grim milestones come hours before a US travel ban for Brazil. It will limit the entry of any foreign nationals, including Brazilians, who were in the country within the past 14 days. Sao Paulo governor Joao Doria told CNN that the ban may affect diplomatic and economic relations between both countries. His city of 12 million is the worst-hit in the country, with more than 83,000 infections and 6,220 deaths, according to the latest data from the Brazilian health ministry. Doria told CNN that President Jair Bolsonaro had been undermining the preventative measures and messaging by the governors of the most impacted places in Brazil. “The behavior of President Bolsonaro is the wrong behavior. He is against social isolation. He’s against orientation of the science,” Doria said, adding that in his city, “we support social isolation, we recommend to the people to use masks and stay home.”

Bolsonaro has referred to the virus as a “little flu” and frequently downplayed its risks. Two health ministers have left his cabinet in a 4-week period — one was fired and the other resigned — after disagreements over how to handle the pandemic. A coronavirus model that has been cited by the White House, suggests the country’s trauma is far from over. Analysis from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington projects there will be 125,833 deaths by August 4, with a possible range as low as 68,311 and as high as 221,078.
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From CNN: Latin America is the new ‘epicenter’ of the COVID-19 outbreak. Latin America has surpassed Europe and the United States in the daily number of reported Covid-19 infections, the director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said Tuesday, putting the region at the center of the global outbreak. “There have been more than 2.4 million cases and more than 143,000 deaths in all of the Americas,” Dr. Carissa Etienne told a press briefing, adding the region “has become the epicenter of the Covid pandemic.” PAHO is particularly concerned about Brazil, where the number of new cases reported last week “was the highest for a seven-day period since the outbreak began,” Etienne said. Peru and Chile are also reporting a high number of cases, she added, warning that for countries in the region “now is not the time to relax restrictions or scale back preventive strategies.”

Peru and Chile are among the region’s worst hit. They now hold the world’s highest infection rates per capita over a seven-day rolling average, according to Our World in Data (OWID), an independent statistics website headquartered at Oxford University. On Tuesday, Chile had 77,961 infections and 806 deaths since the outbreak began. Two members of it’s government, Minister of Energy Juan Carlos Jobet and Public Works Minister Alfredo Moreno, tested positive for the virus on Monday after showing mild symptoms. Brazil overtook Russia over the weekend to become the country with the most confirmed cases of Covid-19 after the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University figures. By Monday, it had 374,898 infections in total and 23,473 deaths, according to the health ministry. “Now is the time to stay strong, to remain vigilant, and to aggressively implement proven public health measures. We have learned from other regions, we have learned what works and what doesn’t and we must continue to apply this knowledge to our context,” Etienne said.
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From WJPA News: A new children’s health condition linked to COVID-19 has now popped up in Pennsylvania, health officials said. The illness is called Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, or MIS-C, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The condition’s symptoms include a persistent fever that is often relatively high temperature, rash, change in skin color, swollen lymph nodes, red eyes and abdominal pain. Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said Tuesday at a news conference that the Department of Health was aware of 17 reports of the disease in the state. Nine of those have been confirmed, two were determined to not be cases of MIS-C and the remaining six are still being investigated. New York City reported the first cases in the country in April. They now have more than 100 cases and three children have died. Researchers said early treatment leads to a full recovery in most cases.

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From WJPA News: Officials in Canonsburg say they will be postponing the opening of Town Park Pool for the 2020 season because of the coronavirus pandemic.  Officials say their decision to hold-off on their scheduled May 23rd opening in time for Memorial Day weekend was based on the limits imposed on social gatherings by Governor Tom Wolf.  They said that under those guidelines, it would be nearly impossible to operate the pool in a healthy and safe manner.  But, all may not be lost.  Officials say the pool committee will revisit its decision at their meeting in early June and they remain optimistic that future conditions and mandates will allow them to open the pool at some point this season.
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From WJPA News: Canonsburg has decided to cancel it’s famous 4th-of July Parade, along with all of it’s festivities.  Mayor Dave Rhome said “After holding on as long as we could before making a decision, the Fourth of July Committee has determined, after long conversations, that it’s in the best interest for the safety and security of all of our people who live here and all of the people who would be traveling here, to cancel the parade at this time.“The decision did not come easily.” 

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While still in the yellow phase, group gatherings of more than 25 people are still prohibited. The city of Pittsburgh has announced it will cancel the 4th of July Fireworks celebration.

City and county parks have remained open during the red phase, but some activities were restricted. City playgrounds, park shelters and spray parks will remain closed. Swimming pools, including the Oliver Bath House, will be closed.
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From CNN: How the COVID-19 virus not only hits the respiratory system but the whole body.
Read it, here.


A quick overview map on COVID-19 virus cases across the country, here.
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From WJPA News: In Washington County, The Whiskey Rebellion Festival has been cancelled for the second weekend in July.
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From WJPA News: The Greater Washington County Food Bank has announced several “Truck To Trunk” locations in May. Click here and read more.
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From WJPA News: In Greene County, Rain Day in Waynesburg has been cancelled for July 29th.