The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) provided its weekly Friday update on the most recent statistics related to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Delaware, as of 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24.
In all, 719 new cases were announced this week for a total of 20,085 positive cases of COVID-19 among Delaware residents, reported to DPH since March 11. This includes the 10,517 individuals who are considered recovered.
Although there are fewer new cases, Delaware is still above 100 daily new cases.
The seven-day average for the percentage of persons who tested positive for COVID-19 decreased to 6.7 percent as of Thursday, Sept. 24. In addition, 53 individuals are currently hospitalized (11 of whom are critically ill), which is five fewer people compared to last week.
A total of 631 Delawareans have passed away due to complications from COVID-19. The state announced 11 more deaths this week, six of which had occurred between April and August and were added to the total after a regular review of death certificate data. Individuals ranged in age from 21 to 104 years old. Of those who have died, 327 were female and 304 were male. A total of 310 individuals were from New Castle County, 116 were from Kent County, and 205 were from Sussex County.
To protect personal health information, DPH will not confirm specific information about any individual case, even if other persons or entities disclose it independently.
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:
School-related statistics for K-12
The Division of Public Health is providing statewide aggregate data on the total number of COVID-19 positive cases among students and staff who were in-person at a school or childcare facility while potentially infectious, reported to DPH since Sept. 1, 2020. To determine the start of the infectious period, or when others may have been exposed to someone infectious, DPH looks 48 hours prior to the onset of symptoms or 48 hours prior to testing for those individuals who had no symptoms. These data only indicate potential exposure to COVID-19 in these settings, not whether exposure actually occurred.
Cumulative number of COVID-19 positive students and staff, statewide, who were in-person at a school or childcare facility while potentially infectious, reported to DPH between Sept. 1 to 24:
- Childcare: 16 students and staff
- Private K-12: 15 students and staff
- Public K-12: 13 students and staff
Delaware COVID-19 data:
The latest Delaware COVID-19 case statistics cumulatively since March 11, provided as of 6 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 24, include:
- 20,085 total positive cases
- New Castle County cases: 9,975
- Kent County cases: 2,905
- Sussex County cases: 6,718
- Unknown County: 487
- Females: 10,791; Males: 9,258; Unknown Sex: 36
- Age range: 0 to 104
- Currently hospitalized: 53, including 11 critically ill (This data represents individuals currently hospitalized in a Delaware hospital regardless of residence, and is not cumulative.)
- Delawareans recovered: 10,517
- 259,289 negative tests (preliminary data, based on negative results reported to DPH by state and commercial laboratories performing analysis).
(Data are provisional and subject to change.)
Generally, Delaware is now considering patients recovered after at least 24 hours have passed since the resolution of fever (without the use of fever-reducing medications) and/or improvement in symptoms, and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Individuals who tested positive who have not had any symptoms are considered recovered after at least 10 days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 test with no subsequent illness.
Long-term care statistics
Information related to positive cases and deaths among residents at long-term care facilities will be updated weekly each Friday, using information reported as of 6 p.m. Thursday evening. There has been a total of 1,266 positive COVID-19 cases cumulatively involving long-term care residents, and 374 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 (17)
- Brandywine Living at Seaside Pointe, Rehoboth Beach (2)
- Cadia Healthcare Renaissance, Millsboro (9)
- Country Rest Home, Greenwood (2)
- Harbor Healthcare and Rehabilitation, Lewes (20)
- Harrison House Senior Living, Georgetown (41)
- Milford Center, Genesis Healthcare, Milford (36)
Additional demographic data on COVID-19 cases and deaths, including race/ethnicity, more age-specific data and rates information by ZIP code, can be found online at the DPH My Healthy Community data portal at de.gov/healthycommunity.
COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities
The DPH is currently investigating COVID-19 outbreaks in several long-term care facilities. Locations where significant ongoing outbreaks are occurring include:
- Country Rest Home in Greenwood: 18 residents and 14 staff members
- Kentmere Rehabilitation and Health Care Center in Wilmington: 28 residents and 24 staff members
- Cadia Healthcare Silverside in Wilmington: 19 residents and less than 10 staff members
(Staff members 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.)
While the source of exposure in these outbreaks is still under investigation, visitation activities do not appear to be contributing to the spread of illness as indoor visitation has not been implemented at any of the impacted facilities. In addition, availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) also does not appear to be a driving factor in these outbreaks. The State routinely monitors PPE levels in these facilities, and no facility has recently requested a need for additional support.
The DHSS Division of Public Health and Division of Health Care Quality (DHCQ) are actively working with impacted facilities to ensure infection control measures are in place. DPH has provided recommendations to protect residents and staff, including testing guidance, isolation and quarantine recommendations, and patient and staff management strategies.
Active daily screening measures are in place at each long-term care facility. All facilities are required to screen staff members at the start of each shift, and all residents must be screened once per day. DHSS is also making repeat training available to ensure every long-term care facility staff member in the state is aware and up to date on all COVID-19 protocols and guidance.
Earlier this week, all long-term care facilities in the state were issued updated guidance to test all staff weekly, and all bi-weekly testing schedules were suspended. Previously, bi-weekly testing schedules were permitted for facilities that had no new infections for a minimum of 14 days.
The most current guidance and requirements for long-term care facilities is available at https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/long-term-care-facilities/. Additional aggregate statewide data related to long-term care facilities can be found further below.
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: HSPContact@delaware.gov. Questions related to business re-openings or operations as businesses reopen should go to COVID19FAQ@delaware.gov.
Anyone with a question about COVID-19, whether related to medical or social service needs, should call Delaware 211, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. 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 DPHCall@delaware.gov. Questions related to business re-openings or operations as businesses reopen should go to COVID19FAQ@delaware.gov. Questions regarding unemployment claims should be emailed to: UIClaims@delaware.gov.
Any Delaware healthcare, long-term care, residential or other high-risk facility with questions or concerns can email DPH_PAC@delaware.gov or call the DPH Call Center at 1-866-408-1899 (ext. 2).
For all information on Delaware’s response, visit de.gov/coronavirus.