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Coronavirus Daily Briefing News

COVID-19 Daily Briefing 5/18


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Stay in-the-know with a collection of COVID-19 related news briefs from across our communities. 

May 18

DPH updates COVID-19 numbers for Monday, May 18

Over the weekend, the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) announced 496 new positive cases have been confirmed and that 28 more Delawareans — 297 in all — have passed away due to complications from COVID-19. The deceased range in age from 21 to 103 years old.

As of May 18, the state’s COVID-19 case statistics cumulatively since March 11 include 7,869 total laboratory-confirmed cases — 2,738 of them in New Castle County, 1,219 in Kent County and 3,861 in Sussex County. The state said preliminary data based on reporting by state and commercial laboratories, indicate there have been 34,589 negative cases.

There are 240 Delawareans who are currently hospitalized. To date, 3,545 Delawareans who have tested positive have recovered.

Governor Carney releases guidance for places of worship

On Monday, Gov. Carney released an updated guidance for houses of worship in Delaware. The guidance was created in coordination with the Delaware DPH and the Delaware Council of Faith-Based Partnerships, and encourages virtual services while establishing conditions for in-person ceremonies.

Congregations are limited to 30 percent of fire code occupancy, and strict social distancing must be maintained. High-risk Delawareans, including those over 65-years-old, and anyone who is sick should not attend in-person services, and anyone 13-years-old or older must wear a face covering.

Exchange of materials of any kind during services is strongly discouraged. Baptisms, weddings and funerals are permitted if the services can follow precautions in the updated guidance.

Delaware COVID-19 testing locations

The State of Delaware will be holding two drive-thru COVID-19 testing events this week. 

Thursday May 21
Middletown High School, 120 Silver Lake Rd, Middletown, DE 19709
10am – 2pm

Sunday May 24
Dover DMV, 303 Transportation Cir, Dover, DE 19901
10am – 2pm

Delaware Memorial Bridge Cash Toll Lanes to Reopen

Effective 12:01 a.m. Thursday, May 21, the Delaware Memorial Bridge Twin Span will resume collecting cash at its southbound Toll Plaza.

To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, all DMB toll operators will be required to wear a face mask and gloves while collecting cash tolls. The DRBA is also supplying its collectors with face shields and has installed protective Plexiglas ‘sneeze’ guards in the toll booths.

In a related development, the COVID-19 virus has dramatically impacted traffic volumes on the Delaware Memorial Bridge.  Following two traffic record setting months of January and February 2020, traffic volumes on the Twin Spans declined over 24% YoY in March 2020.  In April 2020, traffic totals continued to plummet, falling more than 64% YoY. Year to date, the Twin Span has registered approximately 4.6 million vehicles, a decline of nearly 25% compared to 2019 statistics.

YMCA continues food distribution efforts 

The YMCA of Delaware is distributing food at multiple sites throughout the state.  Community members will be able to pick up boxes of pre-packaged non-refrigerated/non-perishable food staples.

They are working with the Food Bank of Delaware to add distribution dates and locations. Please check back frequently for updates. Distribution will be from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m., or until supplies are depleted. 

  • Tuesday, May 19 – Sussex YMCA
  • Thursday, May 21 – Middletown YMCA

Blood Bank of Delmarva blood supply dangerously low
Blood Bank of Delmarva issued an urgent call for healthy blood donors. The need for red blood cells has rebounded to pre-COVID-19 levels, but the blood supply is still dangerously low.
In order to maintain a safe blood supply, a seven-day inventory of all blood types must be continually replenished. Right now, reserves are far below that minimum. For instance, O positive red blood cells are at a 2.8-day inventory level. Read more.

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