Gov. John Carney issued a statement Dec. 5 as hospitalizations approach April’s peak amount.
“For anyone still not taking this winter surge seriously, now is the time to start. More than 300 Delawareans are currently in the hospital with COVID-19, and we are likely to soon pass our spring peak of 337 hospitalizations,” Carney said. “We are facing a serious situation that promises only to get worse in the weeks ahead. Delaware’s healthcare workers continue to work day and night to treat the sick and protect lives – as they’ve done throughout this crisis. We owe them a deep debt of gratitude and our respect. Let’s follow their lead. We all know what to do. Do not gather with friends or family outside your household. Wear a mask anytime you’re indoors with others you don’t live with. Wash or sanitize your hands frequently. A vaccine is on the way. But we need to stay vigilant. These are small, temporary sacrifices that will save lives.”
The number of hospitalization reached 306 based on data received Dec. 4, with 36 people in critical condition. The rate of positive tests hit a seven-day average high of 8.6 percent, a number that now exceeds the moderate to minimum spread category that schools had used for hybrid learning. Schools have been operating with a combination of virtual and in-school classes under the hybrid model because two of the three indicators used by the state to determine COVID-19 spread were considered minimum to moderate.
With the positive rate now in the red, it joins the rate of new cases, which has been in the significant community spread category with about 337 cases. Anything over 100 cases per 100,000 population is considered significant community spread, according to state metrics. For now, daily hospitalizations per 100,000 remain in the yellow or minimum to moderate spread category with an average of 19.2.
According to the school data on My Healthy Community, when two of the three categories reach red or significant spread, school buildings will be closed with remote learning only. School data is updated on Mondays, according to the site.
Carney did not address schools or whether they will be required to go remote like they did in the spring.