The Delaware Division of Public Health announced 165 additional positive cases of coronavirus and no new deaths.
While the total number of positive cases has increased by 165 between yesterday and today, 102 new positive cases were reported to DPH on July 5. The remaining 63 positive cases are from test results reported on prior days (the majority of which – an additional 59 positive cases – were reported on July 4), but processed into the DPH surveillance system on July 5.
The state has stepped up testing in an effort to determine the extent of an outbreak tied to eastern Sussex County and in monitoring rising cases in Kent and New Castle Counties.
The Washington Post reported that Delaware is one of 13 states to report new highs in their seven-day case averages, with the state joining Montana and Alaska in having the biggest percentage change from past records. Some of this is due to stepped-up testing in Delaware.
Since mid-week, the number of cases in New Castle County has increased by about 400, with fewer than 300 additional cases in Sussex, a county with 40 percent fewer residents than New Castle.
Below are the number of positive tests in recent days.
- New Castle County cases – 5,079, Wed.; 5,183, Thur.; 5,277, Friday, 5,334, Sat., 5,398, Sun., 5,489, Monday.
- Kent County cases – 1,699, Wed. to 1,716, Thur., 1,730 on Fri., 1,735, Sat., 1,746, Sunday., 1,761, Sunday.
- Sussex County cases 4,690, Wed. to 4,779, Thur., 4,847, Fri., 4,853, Sat., 4,903, Sun., 4,952, Monday.
Many of the new cases are coming from 18 to 35-year-old group, many of whom have not been wearing face masks and not practicing social distancing, especially at the beach.
The number of Delawareans testing positive for the virus hit the 12,300 mark with more than 6,700 recoveries.
Nearly 13 percent of the state’s population as been tested.
Hospitalizations have fallen towards the 50 mark, after rising to 330 or more in the spring.
The hospitalization numbers will be closely watched. Earlier reports suggested one in five young adults might end up in the hospital, although that percentage was believed to be lower during an earlier outbreak centered around poultry workers in Sussex County.
Big gains in the number of cases came from both New Castle and Sussex counties. Both counties have seen extensive testing this week. The rate of daily cases has been running at nearly triple the rate of a few weeks ago.
The Delaware Restaurant Association reported that more than 3,000 restaurant workers in Sussex were tested this week in a program involving the Delaware Emergency Management Agency and Beebe health care. It was not immediately known how many of those test results have come back.
On Tuesday, Gov. John Carney modified the state’s emergency order to ban bar service in eastern Sussex County. Diners can receive drinks from their tables, but no stools or standing at the bar is permitted. People in close proximity in bar areas have been known to spread Covid-19.
Plans to move to Phase 3 have also been paused.
Rehoboth Beach and Bethany Beach widened mask requirements in separate orders. Rehoboth now requires masks on the beach, while Bethany now requires their use in its business area.