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Blair County COVID-19 Spike

Blair County has seen a steady increase in Coronavirus cases in recent weeks.

The county’s total case count now stands at 837, one fourth of those cases coming in just the last 14 days. On Saturday the county reported it’s highest single day total to date, nearing 40 cases.
Blair County EMA Director Mark Taylor says county officials have been monitoring the increase in cases.

He’s also been keeping a close eye on the zip code data provided by the Department Of Health.

He’s attributing most of the increase to an outbreak at Penn State Altoona.
Taylor says the university has been receiving results from on demand and random testing on campus and they’re quarantining students who come back positive.

The county also reporting three more deaths in the last two weeks. Taylor says the majority of the county’s deaths have been elderly individuals with underlying health issues.

He says the county’s death rate is better than counties of similar size in the commonwealth. Taylor says the good news is, outbreaks are not widespread.

“Outside of Penn State and their totals were not seeing any real outbreaks. So much of it is common sense. The masking, social distancing, following all the guidance that’s out there from the CDC and Department of Health.”

We spoke with John O’Harrow from the Penn State Altoona communications office this afternoon. He says they’ve been encouraging students to take part in on demand testing on campus and while they did see a spike in positives,
he says the numbers are trending in the right direction.

 

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