Positive COVID-19 cases continue to soar in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Department of Health Saturday added more than 11,000 new cases Saturday to its overall total. that number now stands at more than 480,000. There are currently more than 5500 people hospitalized because of the coronavirus.
Pennsylvania's Department of Health is preparing to give out COVID-19 vaccines soon. State Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine says the vaccines will be administered in three phases. The first of those phases will see the vaccines distributed to hospitals directly, but Levine says private companies will help as well. "We also anticipate that the Pfizer vaccine will also be distributed through our pharmacy partners at CVS and Walgreens to nursing homes and other long-term care facilities through the end of December and then into January," Levine says. Those also receiving the vaccines during phase one are first responders and employees in the energy, education and food-processing fields. Patients will high-risk conditions will be included in phase two and the third phase will then see the remainder of the general population having access to it. That might not happen until April or May.
New Jersey continues to report more and more cases of the coronavirus. More than 4000 new cases were reported Sunday. Gov. Phil Murphy confirmed 24 more coronavirus-related deaths as well. Murphy is urging residents to use common sense. "We must work together to beat back the second wave," the governor said.
New Jersey is gearing up to distribute its first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Tomorrow, the first round of vaccines will go to health care workers at Newark's University Hospital. Gov. Phil Murphy says he and Health Commissioner Judy Perischilli will be there. The hospital has created a COVID-19 vaccine clinic at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, which has the capacity to give out at least 600 vaccines a day.
The season's first substantial snowstorm is about 48 hours away. Accu-Weather's Joe Lundberg says the snow is likely to begin mid-Wednesday afternoon. "Once it comes in, it's going to come down fast and furious and will snow very hard Wednesday night before exiting early Thursday," Lundberg says. By the time the storm exits Thursday morning, Lundberg expects about a foot of snow to have been left behind.
Electors from around the commonwealth will meet in Harrisburg today to officially award the state of Pennsylvania and its 20 electoral votes to Joe Biden. A similar process will play out all across America today with electors meeting to officially certify the winners in their states. Vice President Mike Pence will preside over a joint session of Congress on January 6th, where the electoral votes will be officially counted.
Allentown police are investigating the shooting of two people at different locations Saturday night. One person was shot and seriously wounded in the area of 14th and Turner streets. That individual is expected to survive however. A second person was shot in the 100 block of South Hall Street and suffered a less serious injury. Police were then called for another report of shots fired in the area of Lumber and Allen streets, but so far there are no reports of anyone getting hit by gunfire there. The three incidents happened within an hour of one another. Investigators are trying to determine if they are related.
A woman has died two weeks after sustaining burn injuries in a house fire. 72-year-old Mary Ann Johnson died early Saturday morning at Lehigh Valley Hospital. She suffered burns in a fire on November 30 at her home in the 100 block of Ramblewood Drive in Forks Township. Her death was ruled an accident.
In Jalen Hurts' first game as the Eagles' starting quarterback, the Eagles stunned the Saints 24-21. Hurts says the team played a lot better but certainly has room for improvement. "We clearly understand there's a lot to work on. I'm excited to get back to practice to get ready for the next game," Hurts says. Hurts threw for 167 yards and ran for 106 in his starting debut. The Eagles are now 4-8-1 while the Saints slip to 10-3 after losing a nine-game winning streak.