Largest COVID-19 increase so far as case total hits 3,200

DOVER — Delaware announced 269 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, marking the biggest increase for a single day thus far. The state has now seen 3,200 cases, along with 89 deaths, seven of which are new.

According to the Division of Public Health, there has been an increase of about 66 percent in the number of laboratory-confirmed cases over the past week.

Currently, 269 people are hospitalized in Delaware from coronavirus-related issues, with 69 critically ill. DPH said 599 have recovered, meaning they have gone without symptoms for at least a week.

Delaware announced its first laboratory-confirmed case March 11.

The most recent deaths include a 50-year-old woman from Sussex County, a 62-year-old woman from New Castle County, a 62-year-old man from Kent County, a 72-year-old man from Sussex County, a 74-year-old man from Kent County, an 84-year-old man from New Castle County and an 88-year-old man from Sussex County.

The 50-year-old is the third Delawarean without underlying health conditions to die from the virus. The 88-, 84- and 74-year-olds were all residents of long-term care centers, as was the 62-year-old woman.

To date, there have been 237 confirmed coronavirus cases involving residents of long-term care facilities in the state, with 52 deaths.

That total includes 18 deaths at Genesis Healthcare’s Milford Center, 11 at Little Sisters of the Poor, five at Brandywine Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, three at Parkview Nursing and Rehabilitation, three at Atlantic Shores Rehabilitation and Health Center, three at New Castle Health and Rehabilitation Center, two at Delaware Hospital for the Chronically Ill and one at Governor Bacon Health Center.

Additionally, DPH said three facilities in New Castle, two in Sussex and one in Kent have had one death each, although it is only naming centers with multiple deaths. Governor Bacon appears to be an exception because it is run by the state.

So far, Sussex has been hit disproportionately hard by the virus: Although it has just 42 percent of the population of New Castle, it’s seen nearly as many positive cases and fatalities as the northernmost county.

Broken down by the residence of the patient, there have been 1,352 cases involving New Castle, 1,317 involving Sussex, 503 involving Kent and 28 involving a Delawarean whose home is unknown. By death, it’s 39 from New Castle, 38 from Sussex and 12 from Kent.

In all, there have been 1,435 cases and 39 deaths involving men, 1,756 cases and 50 deaths involving women and nine cases involving a person of unknown gender.

Those who have had confirmed cases range in age from 0 to 103, with deaths involving people from ages 32 to 103, according to DPH. The vast majority of people who have died from the virus were elderly, with most at least 75, although the other two individuals with no underlying conditions were 62 and 46.

As of April 14, there were 1,926 cases and 43 deaths. There were 928 cases and 16 deaths one week prior to that, with 319 and 10 just one week before that (March 31).

There have been 13,353 negative test results, DPH said, although it cautions the figure is preliminary and should not be used as a substitute for the overall number of Delawareans who have been tested.

Based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Delaware is counting deaths of not just individuals with laboratory-confirmed coronavirus cases but also people who had symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and were exposed to a confirmed case but never tested.

The new coronavirus totals are as of 6 p.m. Tuesday. DPH this week starting releasing data for the prior day around noon rather than sending out the information for the day every evening. The agency said the change will enable the state to provide additional information, including race of COVID-19 patients and age-adjusted incidence rates by ZIP code, and will lighten the burden on its staff and the media.

More data will be available over the next week, according to the agency.

Because of volume, the hospitalization and critically ill numbers now include non-Delawareans, although all other totals are just Delaware residents, according to the agency.

As usual, the division did not release additional details about the cases Wednesday, citing health privacy laws.

Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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