Governor Tom Wolf has announced that Schuylkill County will move from the "Red" to "Yellow Phase" next Friday.
Wolf's decision puts Lebanon County in the second last cohort of counties to be moved to yellow. Those include Bradford, Cameron, Clarion, Clearfield, Crawford, Elk, Forest, Jefferson, Lawrence, McKean, Montour, Potter, Snyder, Sullivan, Tioga, Venango and Warren. Those counties include: Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lehigh, Northampton, Montgomery, and Philadelphia.
The red phase is the most restrictive phase of the state's shutdown, which began in March, and comes with things like prohibitions on gatherings of 10 or more people.
When asked about Northumberland and Union counties going green, the state Department of Health says both counties have been in the yellow phase long enough to move to green, but have seen concerns with keeping their case count at a decreasing level.
Updated guidance now allows swimming pools and summer camps to operate in the yellow phase, and in the green phase, restaurants can resume operations at 50% in-house capacity, according to the Wolf administration's guidelines.
The remaining counties still in the red after May 29 are planned to move to the yellow by June 5. The state will look at this metric in addition to evaluating risk-based predictions from Carnegie Mellon University, contact tracing, testing capability and sustained reduction in COVID-19 hospitalizations. Pennsylvania is one of just 19 states with new case-rate declines. "Our actions, our collective decision to stay at home, saved lives".
"My stay-at-home order did exactly what it was supposed to do", Wolf said at the press conference.
He also cited New York Times data that shows Pennsylvania being one of just 19 states in which the number of new cases of coronavirus is now decreasing. The number of new cases has plateaued in 28 other states, including Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland and DE, all of which border Pennsylvania.
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