Wayne, Monroe, and Orange counties now have coronavirus cases

Milford. Pennsylvania now has 21 cases of COVID-19, including one in each of the PA counties bordering Pike County: Wayne County and Monroe County. Orange County, across the river in New York, also has a case. The Pike County Commissioners say they are in regular contact with the state agencies managing the outbreak.

| 09 Mar 2020 | 03:49

On Friday, March 6, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed an emergency disaster declaration to provide increased support to state agencies involved in response to coronavirus (COVID-19). The declaration came following Friday's announcement of the first two presumptive positive cases of the virus in Pennsylvania, one of which is in Wayne County, the Pike County Commissioners announced.

Monroe County has two cases as of Thursday, March 12. Wayne and Monroe are the two Pennsylvania counties that border Pike.

On Thursday, the health commissioner in Orange County, N.Y., across the Delaware River from Pike, reported one case who is now in the hospital. On Wednesday Crystal Run Healthcare in Middletown, N.Y., reported its first patient, an Ulster County resident, with coronavirus.

The case in Wayne County is an adult currently at home in isolation. This person recently traveled to a country where COVID-19 is present, according to Gov. Wolf.

A total of 219 additional cases statewide were under investigation in Pennsylvania as of Thursday.

'We anticipated this scenario'

Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said on March 8 there was at the time no evidence of community transmission of the virus in Pennsylvania, meaning all of the cases are directly related to travel history.

“Right now, each of our presumed positive cases have traveled to a country or state with known community outbreaks or have come in contact with someone who has the virus," she said on Sunday. "We are working with the health care community across Pennsylvania to keep them informed, consult on patient testing and ensure they have the resources they need to care for patients.”

On March 9, the Pennsylvania Department of Health identified the Montgomery County case as an adult in critical condition now being treated in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

“We anticipated this very scenario and have been preparing for Pennsylvanians to become impacted by this virus,” Governor Wolf said on March 6. “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.”

The Pike County Commissioners say they and the county’s Department of Public Safety are in regular contact with the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA), the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and other involved agencies regarding guidance and protocols related to COVID-19.

Tristate numbers as of March 12:

New Jersey: 23 presumptive cases, 1 death

Pennsylvania: 21 cases (19 presumptive, 2 confirmed) in the following counties: Bucks (2), Delaware (1), Monroe (2), Montgomery (13), Northampton (1), Philadelphia (1), Wayne (1)

New York: 217 confirmed cases in the following counties: Orange (1), Westchester (121), Nassau (28), Suffolk (6), Rockland (6), Saratoga (2), Ulster (1), New York City (52)

United States: 1,323 confirmed cases and 38 deaths across 42 states and the District of Columbia

Worldwide: 127,863 cases and 4,718 deaths

Responding to an impending disaster:
Gov. Wolf said his administration has done the following so far to date:
Activated the Department of Health’s Emergency Operations Center to allow for enhanced response coordination
Began testing for COVID-19 at the state laboratory
Maintained communication and outreach with federal, state, and local partners
Provided symptom monitoring for residents returning from areas impacted by coronavirus
Provided health care providers, businesses, and education providers with information
Reviewed and adapted current pandemic flu plans to prepare for spread of COVID-19
Increased testing capacity to test 20 to 25 individuals a day
Purchased equipment to increase testing capacity to 125-150 individuals within a day