The Department of Health added 2,043 Coronavirus cases to it’s Statewide totals, pushing the State’s tally past 192,000. 29 more reported Coronavirus related deaths in PA brings the death toll to 8,654. With the jump in cases over the past several days, the seven day average in cases has seen a dramatic increase as well, standing at 1,668. It’s highest mark to date. The recovery rate has dropped again, now down to 78%. 202 new cases were reported in our viewing area with some of our largest Counties seeing the biggest numbers. Centre reported 81 new cases, Blair reported 29, and Cambria reported 28. Cambria surpassing 1,000 total cases since the Pandemic began. Huntingdon reported 19, Somerset 17, Bedford 9, Elk 8, Clearfield 7 and Jefferson 4 new cases. Huntingdon County also reporting it’s 15 Coronavirus related death.
The surge in cases is not isolated to Pennsylvania. On Friday, the US reported its highest number of COVID-19 infections in a single day. Hospitalizations have increased by 33% nationwide this month. Health Officials are now concerned that this will lead to an increase in the death toll in a few weeks. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Nation’s top Infectious Disease Expert now says that after being weary of the idea, he now supports a Nationwide Mask Mandate. Fauci saying: “I get the argument saying well if you mandate a mask, then you’re going to have to enforce it and that will create more of problem. Well if people are not wearing mask, then maybe we should be mandating it.”
This week, an updated model published in the Journal Nature Forecast some possible grim scenarios, forecasting up to one million COVID deaths in the US, by the end of February. That’s if social distancing mandates are eased and only about half the population wears masks in public.