DOYLESTOWN >> Bucks County last week posted a slight decline in the number of positive COVID-19 cases for the first time since the week ending June 20.
A total of 257 infections was reported by the Bucks County Health Department for the week ending July 25, an average of about 37 per day. That was nine fewer cases than during the week of July 12-18.
That level remains more than double the total cases reported during the third week of June, when the number of infections began to climb once again. But Dr. David Damsker, director of the county health department, said the slight drop last week may be a sign that the post-July 4th spike in case numbers has crested and could be headed down again.
“We said all along that we’d hit this small increase heading into green, with everyone being fully out and about,” Damsker said. “Most importantly, hospitalization rates have remained low.”
Twenty-three Bucks residents infected with the coronavirus are currently in hospitals, three of whom are in critical condition and on ventilators. July deaths remain infrequent; the last Bucks County fatality blamed on COVID-19 occurred on July 11, and the death toll for the month stands at two.
Bucks County’s slight decline in coronavirus cases runs counter to statewide trends. Gov. Tom Wolf reported on Friday that total numbers for Pennsylvania continue to rise. “We need to recommit to the simple measures of mask-wearing and social distancing to stop the spread and go back to more freedoms,” Wolf said.
Of 155 positive cases reported in Bucks over the past four days (July 24 to 27), 38 are delayed reports that are at least two weeks old and no longer are considered infectious. The largest known source was people infecting others in their households, which accounted for 51 of the cases. Thirty-one were attributed to community spread, 26 were infected out of state, six were infected at work, six are residents or workers at long-term care facilities, five are healthcare workers and 30 were unable to be interviewed immediately.
Bucks County now has had 6,325 residents test positive for COVID-19 during the pandemic, or about 1 percent of the total population. A total of 512 deaths have been attributed to the virus, including 410 long-term care residents, while 5,039 are confirmed to have recovered.
The median age of those who have been infected in Bucks is 53, while the median age of death is 82.
Statistics, charts and other coronavirus-related information can be found on the county’s data portal: https://covid19-bucksgis.hub.arcgis.com.