Delaware won't go into phase 3 Monday, Gov. Carney says
Here are some of the top stories we're following for Thursday, June 25, 2020. Wochit
Delaware will not move into phase three of its economic reopening plan as scheduled on Monday, Gov. John Carney announced Thursday evening.
“I know many Delawareans expected us to move into phase three of economic reopening on Monday, June 29 – and that had been my hope, as well," Carney said. "But we are delaying that decision so we can get a better handle on what’s going on in Delaware and around the country.
Carney said the state intends to make a decision on the start of phase three "early next week."
“Too many Delawareans and visitors are not following basic public health precautions," Carney said. "We’ve heard and seen concerns especially in our beach communities, in restaurants, in gyms, and at sporting events. Now’s not the time to let up. You’re required to wear a mask in public settings. Keep your distance from those outside your household.
"These are common-sense steps that, frankly, are not that difficult to follow. And they’re a small price to pay for keeping our friends and relatives out of the hospital."
The number of COVID-related hospitalizations in Delaware was at 93 through the end of Wednesday, according to numbers provided by the state. Coronavirus hospitalizations in Delaware peaked on April 27, when 337 people were at a Delaware hospital due to COVID-19. But the number of people hospitalized due to the pandemic was as low as 75 on June 18.
The state announced 91 additional cases Thursday afternoon. There were just 15 new hospitalizations Wednesday, the second-lowest in June. But the day before saw 29 new hospitalizations, the highest number in 10 days.
Delaware reported two additional deaths Thursday, bringing its total death count from the pandemic to 507. The two latest deaths were a 36-year-old and 63-year-old, both with underlying conditions, the state's Division of Public Health said.
Carney said a testing event in Rehoboth held Thursday would "help us determine infection rates in our coastal communities."
The state, Carney said, will be "monitoring this data – as well as compliance with public health requirements like mask-wearing and social distancing – as we make a determination about when phase three should begin."
Carney and Dr. Karyl Rattay, director of the Delaware Division of Public, said in a news conference this week that they had seen concerning patterns at the beaches after senior week activities and other events.
Of Delaware's 10,980 cases, 2,948 are from people in the 18-34 age group. Of the state's 507 deaths, only 11 come from that age group, while 416 (82%) deaths were people aged 65 or older.
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“In Delaware, we are beating this disease. We have flattened the curve. But that’s because Delawareans stayed home and made significant sacrifices to keep others safe. Make no mistake: COVID-19 has not gone away. We’ve seen what has happened in other states when folks let their guard down. Let’s not be one of those states.”
The other states Carney is referring to likely include Texas, Arizona and Florida.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Thursday paused plans to continue to reopen Texas, which is already in its phase three. State health officials there reported 4,389 patients in Texas hospitals Wednesday, the 13th consecutive day of hitting a new high.
Delaware moved into phase one of its reopening on June 1 and started phase two on June 15.
The state has not yet revealed what additional allowances would happen in phase three.
Contact Jeff Neiburg at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @Jeff_Neiburg.