PHILADELPHIA - Two new presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 have been declared in Pennsylvania Saturday afternoon, Gov. Tom Wolf announced. The two new cases are both said to be in Montgomery County.
According to Montgomery County officials, in both of the new cases, the people are experiencing mild symptoms and are both isolated in their homes. The patients are an adult male and female. They are not school age, they live in separate parts of the county and do not live together. Each were exposed while traveling in a part of the United States where COVID-19 is present.
This brings Pennsylvania's presumptive positive coronavirus cases to four.
"Even with these new cases, I want to reassure Pennsylvanias that the commonwealth is prepared and responding appropriately and swiftly so that information and resources are available," Gov. Wolf stated.
Gov. Wolf on Friday announced two presumed positive cases of coronavirus in Delaware County and Wayne County.
In response to the state's first two presumptive cases of COVID-19, Wolf also signed a disaster declaration to support local and state health agencies.
“It is critical to prepare for and respond to suspected or confirmed cases in the commonwealth and to implement measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19." Wolf said.
The first two presumptive coronavirus patients are also being quarantined at their homes. Wolf says state health officials are still waiting for the CDC to confirm the positive test results.
"I'm saying 'presumed positive' for a reason because the results have to be confirmed by the CDC," Wolf said at a Friday morning press conference.
According to the state, the disaster declaration follows the Department of Health's activation of its Department of Operations Center to conduct public health and medical coordination for COVID-19
Pennsylvania's Emergency Management Agency Director Andy Padenfield will be assume charge of Pennsylvania's emergency operations at both state and local levels.
To date, there had not been any confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state, but several patients in Philadelphia and beyond have been evaluated.
“We anticipated this very scenario and have been preparing for Pennsylvanians to become impacted by this virus,” Wolf said.
“This is not the first rapidly-spreading virus we have faced in our commonwealth and it will not be the last. We are prepared to mitigate the spread of this virus.”
Officials in Bucks County announced Friday that five schools will be closed after several students and staff were possibly exposed to a patient who tested positive for COVID-19. Wolf says state health officials are monitoring the situation in Bucks County.
“The confirmation of a case of coronavirus is not a surprise to us, and we’ve been working with the Department of Health since January to ensure that we’d be ready,” said Padfield.
“Earlier this week, we partially activated the Commonwealth Response Coordination Center here at PEMA in order to support their planning efforts.”
Wolf's office Thursday announced travel guidelines for Pennsylvania residents who arrived in the state from China, Iran, Italy and South Korea. Residents will be contacted by state health officials to remain home and self-quarantine for 14 days. Wolf says health officials are not aware of community spread at this time.
State officials encourage Pennsylvanians to visit the state's website for updates as they become available.
Several schools and organizations have canceled or rescheduled events due to the coronavirus. The University of Pennsylvania has canceled all large-scale, on-campus admitted student programming scheduled for April, which includes all Quaker Day events scheduled for April 6 and April 15 and Multicultural Scholars Preview programming scheduled for April 14.
The Philadelphia Union has postponed it's meet the team event that was scheduled for Wednesday at Dave & Buster's. No word on a new date at this time.
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