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New covid cases in Bucks shatter records

New covid-19 infections in Bucks County continued to shatter records last week, county health officials said Monday.

The state reported 3,227 new infections in Bucks from Nov. 29 to Dec. 5, an average of 461 per day. It was the first time the weekly case total exceeded 3,000 and daily cases averaged more than 400 per day.

And the weekly death toll in Bucks  hit 38, the highest since May. A total of 83 Bucks County deaths were attributed to covid in November. That made last month the third-deadliest of the pandemic, after April (280 deaths) and May (253 deaths).

As of Saturday, 78 county residents were hospitalized with covid-19, eight of them on ventilators.

Twenty-seven percent of the adult ICU beds in Bucks County hospitals remained available, along with 34 percent of all medical-surgical beds and 72 percent of all ventilators.

Bucks County had a 15.3 percent test positivity rate for the week, once again exceeding the statewide rate of 14.4 percent.

Most non-judicial Bucks County offices remain open to the public on an appointment-only basis through Jan. 4, 2021. Public officials continue to urge the public to refrain from out-of-state travel and social gatherings, and to wear masks indoors and when close to others outside.

Bucks County case investigators have focused attention on infections among older adults and school students, last week identifying 88 new cases among residents and staff of long-term care facilities. A total of 232 students and 31 school staff tested positive for covid.

Most of the infected students are taking all or some of their classes virtually, while 18 percent are confirmed to be full-time in-class students.

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