PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The number of coronavirus cases in Pennsylvania has soared above 2,200 as more deaths have been reported across the Delaware Valley. Health officials reported Friday an additional 531 COVID-19 cases, bringing the statewide total to 2,218, including 637 cases in Philadelphia. The number of coronavirus cases jumped by 154 on Friday in the city.
“Our notable increase in cases over the past few days indicate we need everyone to take COVID-19 seriously,” Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Pennsylvanians have a very important job right now: stay calm, stay home and stay safe. We have seen case counts continue to increase and the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to stay home.”
Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley announced Friday two new coronavirus-related deaths — both women in their 70s who had underlying health conditions. One of the women was a resident of a nursing home where they’ve had an outbreak. Three people have now died from the virus in the city.
Delaware County also reported two new deaths — a 70-year-old woman from Ridley Township and a 63-year-old man from Middletown Township. The county death toll now stands at four. Twenty-two people total have died so far from the virus in Pennsylvania.
Montgomery County officials announced their fourth coronavirus-related death. The latest patient was a 95-year-old man from Cheltenham Township who passed away in a hospital.
Farley says there are now coronavirus cases in every Philadelphia zip code.
“This virus is everywhere in Philadelphia,” Farley said.
Health officials also say that a Department of Corrections officer and one prisoner have tested positive for the virus.
During Friday’s briefing, Mayor Jim Kenney announced the city has reached an agreement with Temple University to use the Liacouras Center and other Temple facilities as hospital space.
Big news for this Friday: Temple University has stepped up during this critical time. We reached an agreement to use The Liacouras Center and other Temple facilities as hospital space. #TempleMade #ThankYouPhilly pic.twitter.com/QhjxCN0leM
— Jim Kenney (@PhillyMayor) March 27, 2020
This comes after the city ended negotiations with the owner of the Hahnemann Hospital building.
Farley has asked those who traveled to the New York City metropolitan area recently to self-quarantine for 14 days due to the number of cases they have.
Gov. Tom Wolf extended his stay-at-home order to include nine more counties, including Lancaster.
To be clear: ALL PA residents should be staying home to stop the spread of COVID-19.
People who live in counties under this order are required to do so, and can only leave their homes if it is for a necessary task.
Learn about allowed travel ⤵️ https://t.co/vruI34s7cH
— Governor Tom Wolf (@GovernorTomWolf) March 27, 2020
There are more than 20 testing sites in Philadelphia, including hospitals now testing for the coronavirus. But health officials still warn test kits are limited.
Medical professionals and those over 50 years old who are most at risk are getting priority.
Most of the hospitalized patients across Pennsylvania are aged 25 to 49, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older. There have been no pediatric deaths.
Over 21,000 patients have tested negative for the coronavirus, including nearly 4,000 in Philly.