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HARRISBURG — As the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise in Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Wolf on Wednesday is expected to extend his stay-at-home order to all 12.8 million people in the state, according to three sources with knowledge of the governor’s plans.
Wolf’s move to enact a statewide order comes as COVID-19 continues its unrelenting spread into more counties. On Wednesday, state health officials reported 962 new cases, the largest single-day increase, bringing the statewide total to 5,805.
Sixty of the state’s 67 counties have confirmed cases, and 74 people have died after becoming infected with the virus.
A spokesperson for the governor’s office did not immediately return a request for comment.
Over the past week, Wolf has issued stay-at-home orders for counties where the virus’ spread was most acute. As of Tuesday, 33 counties were on that list, covering large swaths of the state. But the governor had stopped short of a statewide order, saying he wanted to take a measured approach to limiting people’s movements.
The governor has so far opted against enforcement of the orders, relying instead on voluntary compliance.
Under a stay-at-home order, residents are urged to only leave their homes for items that are essential for living. They can go out to buy groceries for themselves, family members, or as a volunteer effort; take a walk, hike, or run, as long as they practice social distancing; or care for family members or pets in another household.
Also permitted is travel to care for seniors and people with disabilities. Travel to or from schools or other educational institutions to obtain meals or pick up materials for distance learning is also allowed.
Since the first cases of coronavirus were reported in Pennsylvania early last month, the governor has shut down schools statewide and ordered all but “life-sustaining” businesses remain closed.
This story will be updated.
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