COVID-19 hospitalizations up slightly

Sep. 7—JOHNSTOWN, Pa. — Although there has been a recent uptick in the number of hospitalized patients with COVID-19, hospital representatives are quick to point out that totals remain very low.

"It's definitely something we are keeping an eye on," UPMC spokeswoman Sarah Deist said, describing the situation at UPMC Somerset, Altoona and Bedford hospitals.

Conemaugh Health System spokeswoman Tammy Barbin concurred that the Johnstown-based system has seen a small increase, but pointed out that all new patients receive COVID-19 tests. Those with positive test results are listed as COVID-19 admissions regardless of what led to the hospitalization.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 23 new COVID-19 admissions across Cambria, Somerset, Bedford and Blair counties on the week ending Aug. 26. That's up from 14 from the previous seven days.

The region's admission rate was 6.2 for every 100,000 residents, which is considered in the low range at less than 10 new hospitalizations per 100,000.

Statewide, there were 452 new admissions, which was the most since mid-April when the totals were dropping from a peak in early January when admissions peaked at more than 1,700 in one week. Pennsylvania's all-time high was 6,528 COVID-19 admissions during a week in January 2022.

COVID-19 deaths have plummeted through the year. There were 162 deaths related to COVID-19 over the past three months, state data shows.

That compares to 1,637 deaths over the first three months of 2023.

The most recent Cambria County death was recorded on July 24, bringing the county's total to 828 COVID-19 deaths since the spring of 2020.