HARRISBURG, PA —Pennsylvania's statewide percent-positivity rate — a key metric used to show the prevalence of COVID-19 cases — remained under 5 percent last week, but officials continue to monitor elevated levels in 10 counties.
The latest data, released as part of Gov. Tom Wolf's weekly status update, shows "cause for concern with case increases and percent-positivity above 5 percent in multiple counties," the governor said.
Those counties are Beaver (8.2 percent), Allegheny (7.5 percent), Washington (6.2 percent), Indiana (6.1 percent), Lawrence (6.1 percent), York (6.1 percent), Lebanon (6.0 percent), Philadelphia (5.5 percent), Dauphin (5.1 percent) and Westmoreland (5.0 percent).
"Each of these counties bear watching as the state continues to monitor all available data," Wolf said in his status update.
The World Health Organization has said positivity rates should be under 5 percent.
"If a positivity rate is too high, that may indicate that the state is only testing the sickest patients who seek medical attention, and is not casting a wide enough net to know how much of the virus is spreading within its communities," according to the WHO.
Wolf said the executive order limiting indoor dining capacity and large gatherings issued Wednesday was a step to stop increases "before they become critical."
According to the weekly status update issued July 17, the state has seen a seven-day case increase of 5,579. The previous seven-day increase was 4,914.
This shows that "cases are continuing to rise amid a lapse in following required mitigation efforts," the governor's update said.
“Risky behavior such as going out without a mask and congregating at a bar or in a crowded setting where social distancing isn’t being practiced continues to lead to spikes in cases. We need to recommit to these simple measures to stop the spread and go back to more freedoms," Wolf said.
Pennsylvania on Saturday surpassed 100,000 total COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began.
On Sunday, 786 new positive cases were reported, bringing the statewide total to 101,027. There have been 7,015 total deaths.