Thursday, March 30, 2023

COVID Rates Rising Across the State, NYC Still Grappling With Contagious Variants

Coronavirus infection rates and hospitalizations are rising again across the state, with New York City still grappling with more contagious variants of the virus, Gov. Cuomo said Tuesday.

The state recorded 6,801 new coronavirus cases and 4,681 people hospitalized with the virus — both figures a modest tick up from the previous day, the governor said.

Fifty-three New Yorkers died Sunday from COVID, a dreadful toll that has been slow to decline from its recent peak in early January.

”We’re working toward a future in which COVID is left behind and we can settle into the new normal,” Cuomo said in a statement. “(But) we have a ways to go until that happens.”

The statewide positivity rate stood at 4.7%, according to the data released Tuesday. That’s a hefty increase from the seven-day average of 3.3%, suggesting that infections are increasing rapidly.

New York City and the surrounding suburbs seem to be regaining their unwanted title as the epicenter of the pandemic in the state.

Of the 53 deaths, at least 35 were people living in the five boroughs. Another six were from Long Island and seven were from northern suburbs, according to Tuesday’s data.

The positivity rate has soared over 4% in all the boroughs except Manhattan. Long Island and the northern suburbs also recorded rates above 4%.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Sunday slammed the brakes on relaxing COVID-related restrictions in the Garden State.

Public health experts believe the culprit for the dreaded resurgence of the pandemic is the virulent strain first identified in the U.K. that is now spreading fast across the U.S.

Some countries in Europe have had to impose strict new shutdowns to keep a lid on a spring wave of infections and deaths.

Cuomo has said he hopes New York’s robust vaccination push will protect most New Yorkers before the COVID variants can take root in earnest.

New York and the rest of the nation endured a nasty second wave of the pandemic in the winter, juiced by holiday gatherings. The numbers have dramatically declined from that peak.

But the downturn has leveled off and has started to rise in the last couple of weeks, leading to fears of a full-blown spring surge.