Coronavirus

Gov. Tom Wolf / Livestream Press Conference

As expected, Gov. Tom Wolf announced Friday afternoon that Allegheny County and much of the surrounding region – with the conspicuous exception of Beaver County – will be moved from “red” to “yellow” status effective Friday, May 15.  But in making the announcement Wolf warned, “Residents should be mindful that yellow still means caution.” While restrictions will be eased, they will not be removed. And a spike in cases could mean a return to stricter limits.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

As 13 western Pennsylvania counties prepare to move into Gov. Tom Wolf’s yellow phase of reopening May 15, local businesses and officials are cautiously optimistic.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

The Pennsylvania Department said Friday that 200 more people with COVID-19 have died, raising the statewide death toll to 3,616.

Matt Slocum / AP

Dozens of people drove their vehicles repeatedly around Philadelphia City Hall on Friday to protest government-mandated business closures imposed as the state responds to the coronavirus pandemic.

Shutdown To Lift Around Much Of Western Pennsylvania

May 8, 2020
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Thirteen more western counties, comprising nearly 2.7 million residents and much of the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, can shed Gov. Tom Wolf's most restrictive pandemic orders on movement and businesses next week, joining much of northern Pennsylvania that began emerging Friday.

Krishnamoorthi's office

As the U.S. races to produce protective and medical equipment to combat the coronavirus, a western Pennsylvania company that makes ventilators has come under scrutiny – and now faces a Congressional investigation – for its potential role in the shortage. 

Pennsylvania Extends Statewide Stay-At-Home Order To June 4

May 8, 2020
Gene J. Puskar / AP

The coronavirus death toll grew Thursday by more than 300 as Gov. Tom Wolf ordered most Pennsylvania residents to stay at home until June 4, extending a statewide edict he first imposed April 1 to slow the spread of the new virus.

90.5 WESA / Datawrapper

Twenty-four northwestern and north-central Pennsylvania counties moved into the “yellow” phase of Governor Tom Wolf’s reopening plan Friday. That means daycares are allowed to open, as are churches and most retail businesses. 

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Twenty-four northwestern and north-central Pennsylvania counties move into the "yellow" phase of Gov. Tom Wolf's reopening plan Friday. Businesses will begin to flip their "closed" signs to "open," all while taking precautionary health and safety measures. 

Lynne Sladky/AP

Should you visit your mom this Mother’s Day? A doctor from Pennsylvania’s largest medical system says yes, while the Pennsylvania Department of Health seems to disagree.

Emma Lee / WHYY

This week, after much deliberation, Nancy Nylund decided that she’s staying home this primary.

“It was actually quite agonizing because I love working at the polls,” she said.

Nylund, 68, has served as an inspector of elections in her Plymouth Meeting precinct for several years. But she is also on immunosuppressant medication for her rheumatoid arthritis, and so she decided she didn’t want to risk coming into contact with someone infected with COVID-19.

As a retired nurse, she knows what would be at stake.

Morgan Lee / AP

Nursing and personal care homes in Pennsylvania are among the hardest hit communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

They account for about two-thirds of the commonwealth’s 3,106 coronavirus-related deaths.

The state Senate Democratic Policy Committee held a virtual hearing on the impact of COVID-19 on nursing, personal care and veteran’s homes.

Chairwomen Senator Lisa Boscola is calling for an upgrade in training and pay for those who work in such facilities.

PA Gig Workers Can Finish Applying For Federal Assistance

May 7, 2020
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania gig workers can finally finish applying for a new federally-mandated assistance program, announced the Department of Labor and Industry Monday.

Commonwealth Media Services

Some of the more than 1.7 million Pennsylvanians who have filed for unemployment since the coronavirus pandemic began may get a chance to join a new civilian workforce program to help the state conduct mitigation efforts.

Pennsylvania Extends Moratorium On Evictions, Foreclosures

May 7, 2020
Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Gov. Tom Wolf on Thursday extended a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions by another two months, saying residents should not have to worry about losing their homes during the pandemic.

Businesses Open In Defiance Of Pennsylvania Shutdown

May 7, 2020
Mark Scolforo / AP

As swaths of Pennsylvania prepare for a limited reopening Friday, some fed-up business owners are jumping the gun and have resumed serving customers in defiance of Gov. Tom Wolf’s shutdown order.

GOOGLE MAPS

Of the 352 COVID-19 cases reported between April 20 and May 5, more than one-third can be attributed to residents of long-term care facilities, according data on infections among its high-risk populations released by Allegheny County Wednesday.

Pandemic Ping Pong: PA Sports Fans Double Down On Table Tennis During Shutdown

May 7, 2020
Kimberly Paynter / WHYY

For Matthew Nelson, March 12 will always be the day that sports died.

The night before, the NBA suspended its season. The MLB followed suit the next day. So did the NCAA, scrapping March Madness. Sports were now canceled: another victim of the coronavirus outbreak.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

With much of the United States shut down in response to coronavirus, it’s hard to shake the feeling of living in a post-apocalyptic movie set: empty streets, empty buses, empty playgrounds wrapped with caution tape. Now, weeks into the effects of the pandemic, states have begun to lift restrictions to allow non-essential businesses to open.

Kiley Koscinski / 90.5 WESA

This week, the Polish Hill skate park looks more like a sandbox than a place to try out new tricks. Pittsburgh Public Works has dumped pounds of sand around the park’s bowl and at the base of the park’s ramps.

New Cases Below 1,000 For Fourth Straight Day In Pennsylvania

May 6, 2020
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania on Wednesday reported below 1,000 new cases of the coronavirus for the fourth straight day, the longest such streak since the daily reports of new cases first reached four figures in early April.

Casa San Jose

 


On today's program: How a lack of Spanish-language material about the coronavirus is affecting Pittsburgh’s Latinx community; an update on preparations ahead of the Pennsylvania primary in June; and an Erie-based ride-share driver shares his experience with the shutdown.

Keith Srakocic / AP

One of western Pennsylvania's largest medical systems is ramping up non-emergency surgeries and other routine care, which have been on hold for the past six weeks due to the coronavirus. But it's not quite business as usual at Allegheny Health Network.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Livestream Press Conference

Nearly one million Pennsylvania voters had requested a mail-in ballot for the June 2 primary as of Monday, more than five times as many as four years ago.

Pennsylvania Tops 3,000 Virus Deaths As Data Are Reconciled

May 5, 2020
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania reported another 554 deaths from the coronavirus to pass 3,000 total, while Gov. Tom Wolf said Tuesday that he is not committing to a particular schedule to lift stay-at-home pandemic restrictions in the state's counties or regions.

Matt Rourke / AP

A new initiative is bringing works by Philadelphia artists to some downtown businesses temporarily shuttered in an effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, officials said.

The Center City District and Mural Arts Philadelphia said two dozen works by 11 artists were selected for installation over the boarded-up windows of nine locations ranging from small retailers to large restaurants.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

 


On today's program: How state and local leaders decide when Pittsburgh will reopen; why PA’s overburdened unemployment system still hasn’t delivered to lots of would-be recipients; and how local manufacturers are pivoting as the shutdown continues.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

A University of Pittsburgh physician is leading an international effort to learn more about the link between COVID-19 and neurological symptoms, including stroke.

Shari Koscinski / 90.5 WESA

While much of Pennsylvania remains in coronavirus lockdown, restrictions on businesses in the northwest and north-central parts of the state will begin to loosen on Friday. Lawrence County, closest to Pittsburgh, is one of 24 counties where retail businesses will be allowed to welcome in-person customers.

Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania has passed 50,000 confirmed coronavirus infections, state health officials reported Monday.

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