This page is no longer being updated. For the latest COVID-19 guidance, visit the Health Department’s guidance page.
In the Fall of 2020, the pandemic of COVID-19 surged again in Philadelphia. To flatten the epidemic curve, prevent hospitals from becoming overwhelmed, and reduce the number of COVID-19 deaths, the City of Philadelphia introduced a number of new social distancing restrictions, effective November 20, 2020 through January 1, 2021.
After falling through much of the summer, daily case counts of COVID-19 began to rise exponentially in late September, reaching all-time highs in mid-November. While in part this increase was related to increased testing, the percent of tests that were positive also rose during this period. This increase in case counts was followed by increases in the number of people newly hospitalized for COVID-19, increases in the number of inpatients with COVID-19, increases in cases in long-term care facilities, and increases in deaths from COVID-19.
The increase in COVID-19 in the Fall was predicted by many experts, who believed that COVID-19 would follow the pattern of other respiratory viruses, which are more easily spread when people spend more time indoors and the air is colder and dryer.
Since the coronavirus first arrived in the United States in early 2020, there have been advances in testing and treatment. Nonetheless, with the extraordinarily high and rapidly increasing case rates, unless strong action is taken to prevent this Fall-Winter surge, Philadelphia’s hospitals may become overwhelmed and many people in Philadelphia will die unnecessarily from COVID-19.
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Beginning in March, the Department of Commerce’s Office of Business Services is launching “Zoom With Us,” virtual one-on-one business support sessions to help Philadelphia businesses plan, launch, manage, and grow.
The Office of Business Services helps business owners navigate City services, understand business regulations, as well as assist entrepreneurs through the process of opening, operating, and growing a business in Philadelphia. They can be reached at email@example.com.
The federal Paycheck Protection Program has reopened for applications. Businesses that did not receive funding from the program last year are given first priority, but all businesses that employ 0-300 people, including sole-proprietors, are eligible to apply; this includes businesses that received PPP loans in 2020. Learn more about how to apply.