As COVID-19 cases increase, hospitalizations rise

Randy Griffith, The Tribune-Democrat, Johnstown, Pa.
·3 min read

Apr. 14—Westmoreland was the region's only county with a triple-digit increase in COVID-19 cases in Wednesday's Pennsylvania Department of Health report.

The county's 164 additional cases and two deaths were among 5,730 additional positive cases of COVID-19 and 50 new deaths statewide.

It brings Pennsylvania's totals to 1,087,792 cases and 25,522 deaths attributed to COVID-19.

The department noted that Wednesday's report included 1,101 cases ranging from earlier this week back to mid-January that were submitted Tuesday by "a new lab."

Delayed test results included some 936 from Allegheny County, where the case count jumped by 1,321 on Wednesday.

As the surge continues, hospitalizations are also on the rise. There were 2,580 inpatients being treated for COVID-19 statewide on Wednesday, with 542 in intensive care units and 262 on ventilators.

That is up from 2,384 hospitalizations last week and from 1,652 on March 24.

Locally, there were 59 COVID-19 hospitalizations in Cambria, Blair, Somerset and Bedford county hospitals, with six in ICUs and seven on ventilators.

That is up from 43 hospitalizations last week and 31 hospitalizations across the four-county area March 24.

Cambria County added 61 cases with no deaths, for totals of 12,890 cases and 410 deaths.

Somerset County added 35 cases with no deaths to reach 7,200 cases and 192 deaths.

Bedford County added 13 cases with no deaths to reach 4,098 cases and 130 deaths.

Blair County added 50 cases with no deaths to reach 11,708 cases and 317 deaths.

Indiana County added 22 cases with no deaths to reach 5,639 cases and 165 deaths.

Clearfield County added 28 cases and one death to reach 7,673 cases and 131 deaths.

Centre County added 50 cases with no deaths to reach 15,431 cases and 213 deaths.

Westmoreland's 164 cases and two deaths bring its totals to 31,001 cases and 718 deaths.

The state has now administered 6,600,130 total vaccine doses and 2,488,948 people are fully vaccinated.

Another 1,862,642 people are partially vaccinated, meaning they have received one dose of a two-dose vaccine.

Two vaccine clinics this week are not affected by Tuesday's pause Johnson & Johnson vaccine distribution.

William Kurtycz, CEO of Hyndman Area Health Center Inc., said his team will be working with Johnstown Housing Authority with clinics Thursday in Coopersdale Homes and at the Martha and Mary House, 899 Bedford St.

"Whoever shows up is going to get the shots," Kurtycz said.

The business operated Richland Family Health Center in College Park Plaza, along with Federally Qualified Health Centers in Bedford and Hyndman. The company received some Johnson and Johnson vaccine but had not begun to administer it when state and federal health agencies called for the pause.

"It's on the shelf," Kurtycz said.

A vaccination clinic Friday at SeniorLIFE Johnstown on Broad Street will feature Pfizer vaccine, said Rosalie Danchanko, executive director for Highlands Health: Laurel Highlands Free & Charitable Medical Clinic. Registration is available on the clinic's website,