Bucks County is prepared to move to the “green” phase under the governor’s reopening plan, according to county health department Director Dr. David Damsker.
“We’re are ready to move to green as soon as the governor lets us,” Damsker told reporters in a virtual Thursday press briefing.
Damsker said the county has the infrastructure for testing and contact tracing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“You contact trace and your test, that’s how you stop outbreaks,” Damsker said.
In addition, he thanked Bucks Countians for their efforts to mitigate the spread of the virus.
Bucks County and other counties in the Philadelphia region saw COVID-19 mitigation measures ease last Friday as the area moved from the “red” phase to the “yellow” phase. No date for moving to the green phase has been released by the state.
The green phase allows for additional easing of restrictions.
Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine announced Thursday that Adams, Beaver, Carbon, Columbia, Cumberland, Juniata, Mifflin, Northumberland, Union, Wayne, Wyoming and York counties will move from the yellow to green phase Friday. As of Friday, there will be 46 counties in the green phase and 21 counties in yellow.
Damsker pointed to the deceasing number of new COVID-19 infections in the county as a good sign, stating the area might be seeing a “baseline” until a vaccine is developed or the virus is “snuffed out.”
“We will probably see the same numbers of cases that we have today and tomorrow, and the next day for many weeks to come,” Damsker said.
The county’s top health official said following mitigation measures has helped reduce the case number.
Wolf and Levine have stated that the changes in phases have been related to a combination of a reduction of cases, the number of hospital beds, and other factions on a county-by-county and regional basis.
In reference to a question from this news organization about any new COVID-19 cases connected to large marches and rallies in the region following the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police, Damsker said he is not aware of any cases at this point.
Damsker said that the events were outside and many people practiced mitigation measures. The data in the wake of the marches could help the public health officials plan for large gatherings.