HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf will announce Friday that more counties will be allowed to enter the “green” phase of his pandemic reopening plan, the least-restrictive phase of his stoplight-colored three-phase plan, his office said.
Those counties are in addition to the 16 that he already announced will enter that phase Friday. All told, 3.8 million people live in 34 counties that will be under the “green” phase starting Friday.
In addition, nearly 6 million people in Philadelphia and nine other counties in hard-hit southeastern Pennsylvania are scheduled Friday to become the last in the state to shed the tightest restrictions under Wolf’s reopening plan. That includes the stay-at-home order that is part of the so-called “red” phase.
The state Health Department said Thursday that the coronavirus has infected another 537 people and killed another 75 in Pennsylvania, even as the rate of new cases and the percentage of those testing positive continues to decline.
The agency said it has now confirmed nearly 74,000 cases and a total of 5,817 deaths because of the virus in Pennsylvania in the last three months.
The number of infections is thought to be far higher than the confirmed count because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected without feeling sick. About 69% of the people who tested positive have recovered, the department said.