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Delaware begins 2021 with first pediatric COVID death; cases and hospitalizations also increase

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The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) provided its weekly update regarding the most recent statistics on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Delaware, as of 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021.

DPH is reporting the state's first COVID-19 related death of a child since the start of the pandemic. The death involves a child under the age of 5 from New Castle County who had a significant number of co-morbidities. Additional details about the individual will not be provided to protect patient privacy.

“While each life lost as a result of this virus is tragic, the loss of a child is felt across our entire community,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “We send our deepest condolences to this child’s family and all of those who have lost a loved one during this pandemic. We are urging everyone in our state to come together, take this current winter surge seriously, remain vigilant about mitigation measures, and keep each other safe.”

Also on Friday, Gov. John Carney signed the fifth revision to Delaware's omnibus emergency order, continuing the Stay-at-Home advisory, universal indoor mask mandate and other restrictions in order to help decrease the recent uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

A total of 957 Delawareans have passed away due to complications from COVID-19, with 31 additional deaths since last week's update. Total ages range from under 5 years to 104 years old. Of those who have died, 487 were female and 470 were male. A total of 476 individuals were from New Castle County, 171 were from Kent County, and 310 were from Sussex County.

In all, 6047 new cases were announced in the past eight days for a total of 63,503 positive cases of COVID-19 among Delaware residents, reported to DPH since March 11. A record number of new positive cases (1,241 positive cases) were reported on Wednesday. That's an average of 756 new cases daily.

In addition, 451 individuals are currently hospitalized (a net increase of 39 from last week), of whom, 59 are critically ill.

To protect personal health information, DPH will not confirm specific information about any individual case, even if other persons or entities disclose it independently.

Additional statistics are posted online at the My Healthy Community COVID-19 data portal (

The seven-day average for the percentage of persons who tested positive for COVID-19 increased slightly to 27.3 percent as of Thursday, Jan. 7. (DPH publishes both positivity rates – persons tested and total tests conducted – on its online COVID-19 data portal). As of Tuesday, Jan. 5, the seven-day average for the percentage of total tests that were positive was 10.4 percent (an increase from last week).

Information about testing events, including community testing sites and free-standing sites operated by the health care systems and hospitals, will be listed on the testing section of the Delaware coronavirus websites:

Vaccines in Delaware:

As of Jan. 7, Delaware has administered 21,814 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the state’s immunization information system, DelVAX.

Details are on the "Vaccine Tracker" dashboard at Additional information about COVID-19 vaccine rollout is available at Questions can be directed to the Vaccine Call Center at 1-833-643-1715. People who are deaf and hard of hearing should call 2-1-1 or text their ZIP code to 898-211. Individuals can email their questions concerning the vaccine to

Long-term care statistics

Information related to positive cases and deaths among residents at long-term care facilities are reported as of Thursday evening. There have been a total of 1,980 positive COVID-19 cases cumulatively involving long-term care residents, and 512 residents of Delaware long-term care facilities have died from complications related to COVID-19.

Sussex County deaths involving residents of long-term care facilities include:

  • Atlantic Shores Rehabilitation and Health Center, Millsboro (18)
  • Brandywine Living at Seaside Pointe, Rehoboth Beach (4)
  • Cadia Healthcare Renaissance, Millsboro (10)
  • Country Rest Home, Greenwood (11)
  • Harbor Healthcare and Rehabilitation, Lewes (24)
  • Harrison House Senior Living, Georgetown (43)
  • Lofland Park Center, Genesis Healthcare, Seaford (6)
  • Milford Center, Genesis Healthcare, Milford (40)
  • The Moorings at Lewes, Lewes (4)
  • WillowBrooke Court Skilled Center at Manor House, Seaford (7)
  • One other Sussex County long-term care facility (1 death at this facility)
  • There have been additional deaths in Kent and New Castle facilities, as well.

COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities

The DPH continues to investigate COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities. The following Sussex County facilities have experienced significant outbreaks at some point since late Septermber of 2020:

  • Atlantic Shores Rehabilitation & Health Center in Millsboro: 21 residents and 18 staff
  • Brandywine Assisted Living at Seaside in Rehoboth Beach: 39 residents and 15 staff
  • Cadia Healthcare Renaissance in Millsboro: 22 residents and 20 staff
  • Delmar Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Delmar: 38 residents and 38 staff
  • Harbor Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Lewes: 51 residents and 23 staff
  • Lofland Park in Seaford: 19 residents and 17 staff
  • Milford Center, Genesis Healthcare in Milford: 49 residents and 14 staff
  • Seaford Center Nursing Home in Seaford: 21 residents and 19 staff
  • The Moorings at Lewes in Lewes: 17 residents and 39 staff
  • WillowBrooke Court Skilled Center at Manor House in Seaford: 44 residents and 36 staff
  • There have been additional outbreaks at Kent and New Castle facilities, as well.

("Staff" may include health care and non-health care personnel, such as facility vendors or other individuals working in the long-term care facility who may not be full-time facility employees.)

School-related statistics for K-12

On Tuesday, Jan. 5, the DPH launched a new online dashboard to track the number of contagious cases among staff and students of Delaware schools, and offer a more detailed picture of COVID-19 infection in school buildings (

Questions of all kinds

Anyone who is sick with any of the following symptoms should stay home: fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, muscle aches, fatigue, chills, shaking with chills, loss of smell or taste, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, congestion or runny nose without a known cause (such as allergies). Other symptoms such as abdominal pain or lack of appetite have been identified as potential symptoms related to COVID-19 and may prompt further screening, action or investigation by a primary care provider. Anyone who is sick should avoid going into public spaces and should ask someone else to pick up essential supplies from the grocery store or the pharmacy.

Anyone who thinks they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, or have symptoms of illness, is being advised to make sure to distance themselves from others, particularly vulnerable populations. Older adults and people of any age with serious underlying medical conditions — including serious heart conditions, chronic lung conditions, including moderate to severe asthma, severe obesity and those who are immunocompromised, including through cancer treatment — might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

People with complaints about individuals violating public gathering restrictions should contact state or local law enforcement. Concerns that a business may be violating operating restrictions should be directed to: Questions related to business re-openings or operations as businesses reopen should go to

Anyone with a question about COVID-19, whether related to medical or social service needs, should call Delaware 211, or email Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can text their ZIP code to 898-211. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Medically related questions regarding testing, symptoms, and health-related guidance can be submitted by email at Questions related to business re-openings or operations as businesses reopen should go to Questions regarding unemployment claims should be emailed to:

Any Delaware healthcare, long-term care, residential or other high-risk facility with questions or concerns can email or call the DPH Call Center at 1-866-408-1899 (ext. 2).

For all information on Delaware’s response, visit

Download the "COVID Alert DE" tracking application for mobile devices from the Google Play store or Apple App Store.

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