Two more deaths as virus count rises

There are 637 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Philadelphia, which claimed the lives of two women in their 70s.

A screenshot from March 27’s Philadelphia virtual coronavirus advisory.

The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in Philadelphia climbed rapidly by 154 since yesterday, bringing the total number of cases to 637.

The city also announced two fatalities, one confirmed to be caused by the coronavirus and one probably caused by the virus. Both victims were women in their 70s with underlying medical conditions. One was a nursing home resident, and Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley emphasized how important it is to protect high-risk buildings such as nursing homes by not allowing visitors.

Farley also announced the first confirmed case in the city’s Department of Prisons and one incarcerated individual.

There are confirmed cases in every ZIP code in the city, and Farley said the city would soon release a map detailing where the cases are.

“The key message is it’s everywhere in Philadelphia,” Farley said.

Of the 637 cases, 50 are known to be hospitalized and 54 are known to be healthcare workers. The number of individuals getting tested for coronavirus is rising each day, with 154 of yesterday’s 998 tests coming back positive.

An agreement was reached with Temple University to use the on-campus Liacouras Center in the event the city needs expanded space to house hospital beds.

Thanks to a $5 million donation, the School District of Philadelphia will purchase 50,000 Chromebooks to distribute to students. An estimated 40,000 laptops are already in school buildings and will also be distributed.