Coronavirus in Pennsylvania

Wayne Parry / AP

UPMC is telling its employees that they do not need to quarantine for 14 days after out-of-state travel. 

 

This guidance differs from the quarantine recommendation that the Allegheny County Health Department made on Sunday, after a week of particularly high case counts. But on Wednesday, the county itself has taken steps to clarify some of its recommendations – and health department director Dr. Debra Bogen called UPMC’s guidance a “clear and thoughtful” interpretation of county policy.

 

Matt Rourke / AP

Allegheny County reported Monday that another 83 residents have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. These new cases comprise nearly 17 percent of all cases reported in Pennsylvania on Monday.

Courtesy of Allegheny Health Network

Surgery suites at Allegheny Health Network have a new piece of equipment to protect against the novel coronavirus.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

The Allegheny County Health Department on Saturday announced 90 new cases of COVID-19, the highest daily total since reporting on the pandemic began in mid-March.

KEITH SRAKOCIC / AP

Allegheny County continued its upswing of novel coronavirus infections, with another 45 cases reported on Wednesday. This follows Monday's count of 45 cases, which was the highest daily total in more than a month.

But UPMC, the state’s largest medical system, says it’s important to take a broader look at how the pandemic is progressing.

WAYNE PARRY / AP

COVID-19 infections are again increasing in Allegheny County.

Wolf Loosens Restrictions In Last Of Counties Except Lebanon

Jun 19, 2020
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Parts of Pennsylvania that were among the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic will move next week into the less restrictive “green” zone for reopening businesses and restarting group activities, the Wolf administration announced Friday.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County reported no new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, but that doesn’t mean people aren’t still contracting the coronavirus.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA

Katie Clark sits in a lawn chair in the backyard of the Highland Park home of her friend Nia Baton-Soffietti. The women drink coffee while their two-year-old sons, Oscar and Desmond, explore the hatch of the Baton-Soffietti family car.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Five Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh locations will begin curbside pickup service June 23: Allegheny, Brookline, East Liberty, Hill District and Oakland. Patrons will be able to take home books and other materials, as well as return borrowed materials. 

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Marlo Engels describes herself as an "innate hugger."

Wolf Asks Pennsylvania Supreme Court To Uphold Shutdown

Jun 12, 2020
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf asked the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Friday to intervene in his dispute with legislative Republicans who are trying to end pandemic restrictions he imposed in March to slow the spread of the new coronavirus.

Wolf, Lawmakers Clash Over Emergency Declaration

Jun 10, 2020
Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and the GOP-led Legislature headed toward a legal clash Wednesday over the emergency declaration he issued at the beginning of the pandemic, with lawmakers voting to end it and Wolf insisting he holds veto power.

Pennsylvania Orders Hospitals To Protect Workers From Virus

Jun 10, 2020
UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh

Pennsylvania hospitals will be required to replace soiled or damaged respirators on request, require universal masking and take other steps to protect health care workers from the new coronavirus under an order issued Tuesday by the state health secretary.

With unionized nurses raising the alarm about hazardous working conditions, Health Secretary Rachel Levine pledged to “deliver a safer environment” for health care workers on the front lines of the pandemic.

Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania's COVID-19 death toll passed 6,000 as the state Health Department on Tuesday reported 61 additional deaths linked to the disease.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania will offer $225 million to small businesses struggling with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. At a press conference on Monday, Gov. Tom Wolf said residents must remain vigilant in the fight against COVID-19, but that the state can begin to focus on economic recovery.

Wayne Parry / AP

Health officials in eastern Pennsylvania have traced 12 new coronavirus cases to a person who attended recent beach house gatherings at the New Jersey shore, the Bucks County Department of Health said.

MATT ROURKE / AP

Black deaths from COVID-19 are higher than white deaths due in part to institutional racism and social impediments, such as poverty. The Pittsburgh-based Black COVID-19 Equity Coalition is a group of public health researchers, businesspeople and elected officials working to address those factors as a way to secure better health and economic outcomes for the black community during the pandemic.

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

The death of George Floyd under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer on Memorial Day has inspired protests across the country. Here in Pittsburgh, demonstrations began on Saturday and have continued every day since.

Kimberly Paynter / WHYY

Starting Friday, June 5, Allegheny County moves into the green phase of Governor Tom Wolf's reopening plan.

To help clear up confusion, 90.5 WESA asked listeners for their questions about reopening. Here are answers to some of those questions. 

UPMC

Pennsylvania's largest medical system said Thursday that its inpatient volume has nearly returned to pre-pandemic levels. Though certain areas of care at UPMC, like cancer treatment, are still not back to normal.  

Rebecca Frederick / Heart of Glass

Salons, gyms and spas can reopen Friday after months of restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Some businesses are taking the weekend to ready their locations for appointments and social distancing beginning next week.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Elementary and secondary schools in the yellow and green phases of the state’s reopening plan could resume in-person instruction as early as July 1. Higher education institutions may be able to do so on June 5, the Pennsylvania Department of Education announced Wednesday.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

Pittsburgh’s cooling centers might not be able to open this summer. The facilities are typically housed in senior centers, which serve a community most vulnerable to severe effects of the coronavirus.

According to a city spokesman, senior centers will be primarily focused on offering meals and activities to the elderly. It’s unclear if the facilities will later be able to open to the general public as a place to cool off. 

Keith Srakocic / AP

News on the coronavirus pandemic, including the responses of local governments, health departments, hospital systems, schools and other institutions. For information from the previous week, click here

Editor's note: This post will be frequently updated with the latest news.

 

Friday, June 5, 2020

6:21 p.m. - Toomey, Reschenthaler say COVID response and police reform calls have gone too far

Wolf To Lift More Pandemic Restrictions In Pennsylvania

May 29, 2020
Matt Rourke / AP

Gov. Tom Wolf will lift most of his pandemic restrictions in an additional 16 counties home to nearly 3 million people, including much of the Pittsburgh area, his office said Friday as afflicted Philadelphia also began mapping its way out of the crisis.

Keith Srakocic / AP

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center got nearly twice the federal stimulus aid of its closest competitors, new numbers show, despite the fact that many of its hospitals are in parts of the state that were not among the hardest hit by the coronavirus.

Pennsylvania Unemployment Claims Backlog Persists

May 29, 2020
Tony Dejak / AP

State officials said Thursday they’re making progress, but acknowledge more needs to be done to whittle down an unemployment compensation claims backlog that has persisted for more than two months.

Matt Rourke / AP

More than 70,000 Pennsylvanians have been infected with the coronavirus, the state Health Department said Thursday, and 108 more state residents have died from it.

KATIE BLACKLEY / 90.5 WESA

Despite new state guidelines that permit pools to operate under Pennsylvania’s yellow phase of COVID-19 reopening, many aquatic facilities in Allegheny County are likely to remain dry this summer.

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