2020 coronavirus pandemic in Delaware

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2020 coronavirus pandemic in Delaware
Number of COVID 19 cases in Delaware.svg
Counties by number of positive cases in Delaware as of March 27:
  100+ Confirmed cases
  50-99 Confirmed cases
  25-49 Confirmed cases
  10-24 Confirmed cases
  1–9 Confirmed cases
Virus strainSARS-CoV-2
LocationDelaware, U.S.
Index caseNew Castle County
Arrival dateMarch 11, 2020
Confirmed cases393
Official website
Delaware Department of Health and Social Services

The 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic was reported to have reached the U.S. state of Delaware on March 11, 2020 in New Castle County. As of April 3, 2020, the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services has confirmed 393 positive cases and 12 deaths in Delaware, with 49 people being fully recovered.


COVID-19 cases in Delaware, United States  ()
     Deaths        Active cases and recoveries
# of cases
# of deaths
1(n.a.) 0
4(+300%) 0
4(+0%) 0
6(+50%) 0
7(+17%) 0
8(+14%) 0
16(+100%) 0
26(+63%) 0
30(+15%) 0
39(+30%) 0
45(+15%) 0
56(+24%) 0
87(+55%) 0
104(+20%) 0
119(+14%) 0
143(+20%) 2
165(+15%) 2
214(+30%) 5
232(+8%) 6
264(+14%) 7
319(+21%) 10
368(+15%) 11
Cases: The number of cases confirmed in Delaware.

March 4

On March 4, in preparation for the coronavirus' spread in Delaware, the Delaware Division of Public Health opened a coronavirus call center at its State Health Operation Center in Smyrna to assist with questions that businesses, schools, and people may have about the disease.[1]

March 11–13

On March 11, the Delaware Division of Public Health announced its first presumptive positive case of coronavirus in Delaware. The positive case involved a man over the age of 50 in New Castle County who was associated with the University of Delaware.[2]

On March 12, Delaware Governor John Carney declared a state of emergency. This allowed for the Delaware National Guard to take precautionary actions and prepare for further response to the disease, for the state to conduct public meetings electronically, and prevent the price gouging of goods. Governor Carney also recommended that all non-essential public gatherings of over 100 people be cancelled, following CDC guidelines.[3] Three more positive cases of coronavirus were confirmed on March 12. The patients were two graduate students and a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Delaware.[4] Delaware State University President Dr. Tony Allen advised all students to not return to campus until at least April 5. He also announced that all classes from March 18 until April 5 will take place online.[5]

On March 13, the Downtown Dover Partnership announced the cancellation of the St. Patrick's Day parade due to coronavirus concerns.[6] Late on March 13, Governor Carney closed all Delaware Public Schools from March 16 to March 27.[7] In addition, the University of Delaware announced that all classes after spring break would be moved to an all-online format for the remainder of the semester. All University of Delaware on-campus housing would close for students who remained on the campus during spring break on March 17 at 10:00 pm and for all students who were returning to campus on March 22 at 10:00 pm.[8]

March 14–16

On March 14, the Delaware Division of Public Health announced two more positive cases of coronavirus in the state. The two new patients were both self-quarantining in New Castle County: a woman older than 50 and a man older than 60. This increased the number of total positive cases in Delaware to 6.[9]

Delaware announced their seventh case in the state on March 15; the case is associated with University of Delaware.[10]

The Delaware Division of Public Health announced on March 16 that a woman over 50 in New Castle County was confirmed to have coronavirus. The number of total number of positive cases increased to 8 in Delaware with the addition of this case.[11]

March 17–19

It was announced on March 17 that eight additional positive cases of coronavirus were confirmed in the state, including the first in Sussex County. Of the patients, four were men and four were women, though their ages have not been revealed. This increased the total number of positive cases to 16 in Delaware.[12]

On March 18, the DDHS announced the addition of 10 more positive cases in the state of Delaware, including the first three in Kent County. All three of Delaware's counties had at least one coronavirus case by March 18. The addition of these cases increased the cumulative number of positive cases to 26 for the state.[13]

Dover Air Force Base declared a public health emergency on March 18, allowing for tighter restrictions of the movement of people on the base, including personnel restrictions and access restrictions to the base's installation. In addition, the emergency allowed the isolation and quarantine procedures for the base to go into effect.[14]

On March 19, the number of cases was confirmed to have increased to 30: 23 in New Castle, 3 in Sussex, and 4 in Kent Counties.[15]

March 20–22

On March 20, the state reported 27 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New Castle County, five in Kent County and seven in Sussex County, which brings the total to 39, with two people being in critical condition.[citation needed]

The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) had reported 30 COVID-19 cases in the state just the day before. DPH said testing is recommended for people with a fever and either a cough or shortness of breath.[16]

Government response

March 12

Delaware Governor John Carney declared a state of emergency on March 12, allowing for the Delaware National Guard to prepare for the coronavirus' spread.[3] He would close all public schools in the state on March 13.[7]

March 13

The City of Dover canceled all permits for event gatherings of over 100 people on March 13, citing the governor's recommendation.[6]

March 23

On March 23, Governor John Carney has issued the stay-at-home order to stop the spread of COVID-19. All non-essential businesses have been ordered to close. Governor Carney issued the order Sunday night, set to go in effect Tuesday morning at 8 a.m., stating "All non-essential businesses are closed. All Delawareans are instructed to stay in their homes, except when they are going to and from their place of business if it's permitted to stay open". This shelter-in-place order will remain in effect until May 15.[17] Additionally, Delaware schools are to remain closed through May 15 to fight the spread of COVID-19.[18]

Impact on sports

In college sports, the National Collegiate Athletic Association cancelled all winter and spring tournaments, most notably the Division I men's and women's basketball tournaments, affecting colleges and universities statewide.[19] On March 16, the National Junior College Athletic Association also canceled the remainder of the winter seasons as well as the spring seasons.[20]


2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Cases in Delaware[21]

Updated April 2, 2020

County Confirmed Cases
Kent 41
New Castle 226
Sussex 101
Total 368


  1. ^ "Delaware Opens Coronavirus Call Center". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  2. ^ "Public Health Announces First Presumptive Positive Case of Coronavirus in Delaware Resident". State of Delaware News. 2020-03-11. Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  3. ^ a b Lu, Amy. "Governor Carney Declares State of Emergency Amidst Coronavirus Outbreak". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  4. ^ "Coronavirus In Delaware: Governor Declares State Of Emergency As 3 More University Of Delaware Members Test Positive For COVID-19". 2020-03-12. Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  5. ^ "Coronavirus". 2020-03-15. Archived from the original on 2020-03-15. Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  6. ^ a b Lehman, Tom. "Dover Cancels Permits for Large Events in Light of COVID-19 State of Emergency". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  7. ^ a b Semyon, Cassandra. "Delaware Schools on Hiatus for Two Weeks Due to COVID-19". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  8. ^ "March 13 Coronavirus update: residence halls to close | UDaily". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  9. ^ "DPH Announces 2 More Likely Positive Cases of COVID-19 in Delaware". Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  10. ^ "7th coronavirus case confirmed in Delaware". 6abc Philadelphia. 2020-03-15. Retrieved 2020-03-16.
  11. ^ "JUST IN: Eighth positive coronavirus case confirmed in Delaware, DPH says". 47abc. 2020-03-16. Retrieved 2020-03-16.
  12. ^ "First COVID-19 Case in Sussex County Reported, State Cases Double". Retrieved 2020-03-17.
  13. ^ "UPDATE: Delaware COVID-19 Cases Rise to 26, Kent and Sussex Record 3 Positive Tests Each". Retrieved 2020-03-19.
  14. ^ Kerr, Rose. "Dover Air Force Base Declares Public Health Emergency". Retrieved 2020-03-19.
  15. ^ "Four additional cases announced in Delaware". 47abc. 2020-03-19. Retrieved 2020-03-20.
  16. ^ "Delaware COVID-19 Cases Rise to 38". Retrieved 2020-03-20.
  17. ^ Semyon, Cassandra. "Delaware Prepares for Stay at Home Order". Retrieved 2020-03-24.
  18. ^ Lehman, Tom. "Delaware Schools to Remain Closed Through May 15 to Fight Spread of COVID-19". Retrieved 2020-03-24.
  19. ^ NCAA cancels remaining winter and spring championships NCAA, March 12, 2020
  20. ^ NJCAA cancels spring sports, basketball nationals amid coronavirus outbreak, March 16, 2020
  21. ^ "2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Delaware Health and Social Services - State of Delaware". Retrieved 2020-03-15.

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