HARRISBURG – While the number of COVID-19 cases continues to inch upward in most area counties, the number of positive cases rose dramatically in Armstrong and Butler counties over the past week.

According to state data presented yesterday (Tuesday), the number of positive cases in Armstrong County rose from 88 a week ago to 122 cases this week. In Butler County, the numbers jumped from 444 last week to 508 this week.

Through Tuesday, six deaths had been reported from coronavirus in Armstrong County, while 14 deaths were reported in Butler County.

Also in the area, Clarion County saw its number of positive cases rise from 66 a week ago to 69 this week, with two deaths overall. Venango County cases rose from 46 last week to 53 this week, Jefferson County cases rose from 41 a week ago to 48 this week, and the number of cases in Forest County remained unchanged at seven.

On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed 1,027 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 102,765.

The number of tests administered in the state within the last seven days, between July 14 and July 20, totals 155,796 with 5,996 positive cases. There were 22,287 test results reported to the department through 10 p.m., July 20. These results represent the total number of tests administered.

There have been 7,038 total deaths attributed to COVID-19 so far in Pennsylvania, an increase this week of 20 new deaths.

“As the state has put in place new mitigation efforts to offset recent case increases, we must renew our commitment to protecting against COVID-19 by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and following the requirements set forth in the orders for bars and restaurants, gatherings and telework,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Pennsylvania has been a model for the country on how to reopen effectively using a careful, measured approach. However, we know the virus has not gone away as we see cases rise, so we must work together to stop another surge.”

Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19, officials said.

Of the patients who have tested positive to date, the age breakdown is as follows:

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• 1 percent are ages 0-4.

• 1 percent are ages 5-12.

• Nearly 3 percent are ages 13-18.

• Nearly 9 percent are ages 19-24.

• 37 percent are ages 25-49.

• 23 percent are ages 50-64.

• 25 percent are ages 65 or older.

The state is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19- to 24-year-olds. An alert was sent to healthcare providers about the changing COVID-19 case demographics, as there are more cases in younger age groups than in those 50-64 and 65-plus.

In nursing and personal care homes in Pennsylvania, there are 18,789 resident cases of COVID-19, and 3,647 cases among employees, for a total of 22,436 at 798 distinct facilities in 60 counties. Out of the state’s total deaths, 4,809 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities.

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