ALBANY, NY (NEWS10) – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo held a briefing on Friday, day 322 of the pandemic to update New Yorkers of the latest coronavirus responses. During the briefing, he said that in a week’s time, vaccine doses scheduled for hospital workers will be reassigned to patients with underlying diseases and comorbidities.
Cuomo said frontline workers are exposed to more COVID than anyone else – “Everyone knows this,” he said – and that hospital staff nationwide have achieved a healthy immunization rate of 75%. In order to avoid a staff shortage that could cause hospitals to close, these workers were prioritized in Group 1a.
Still, some of these employees decided against the vaccine. According to the governor, after about two million doses already administered, hospital staff should no longer worry about being vaccine test subjects. With that in mind, Cuomo said hospitals still have a week to take advantage of the vaccine supplies specially designed for their employees. After February 15, these doses will be reassigned to patients with comorbidities.
“We don’t have an offer that can reach everyone. We understand that. So the prioritization is to reach the people who are most at risk or who are most important, ”said Cuomo. Cuomo said underlying conditions, pre-existing conditions, and age are the main drivers of COVID mortality and that 94% of deaths were individuals from these comorbidities.
The governor has urged the local health departments to prepare for this postponement. He said his administration is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to compile a list of comorbidities. “We’re basically going to be following CDC guidelines,” Cuomo said, since they already have a basic list. Still, he said, “There are some items on the list that raise questions for healthcare professionals and we are working on them.”
New York had the lowest daily positivity rate since November
Cuomo gave the following information about the numbers:
- Test results reported – 203,627
- Overall positive – 8,777
- Percent positive – 4.31%
- 7th-Tag Average percentage positive – 4.67%
- Hospitalization of the patient – 7,937 (-30)
- Net Change Patient Hospitalization last week – -420
- Newly admitted patients – 1,022
- Hospital counties – 57
- Intensive care unit number – 1,516 (+10)
- Intubation unit number – 1,000 (+14)
- Total discharges – 131.165 (+863)
- Deaths – 153
- Total deaths – 35,920
Regarding vaccinations, Cuomo said: “This is where we want to be. We want to use everything we have received and get it into the arms of people as quickly as possible. “He said vaccine equity remains an issue in a climate of rampant vaccine reluctance – which includes skepticism about its effectiveness, fear of unknown side effects, and distrust of the government and the healthcare industry at large. “Hesitation needs to be addressed directly with facts and validation,” Cuomo said while calling on black community leaders to help communicate the message.
The governor came up with statistics on demographics. The following pictures will help paint a picture of the demographics of those who have already been vaccinated:
For part of the briefing, Cuomo greeted New Jersey’s Governor Phil Murphy. He praised the partnership between the states, saying, “This partnership has undoubtedly saved lives on both sides of the Hudson.” Murphy was there to support Cuomo’s demand for an equitable distribution of local and state aid from the federal government. He reiterated the feeling that the three-state region – New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut – paid disproportionately high than states in other parts of the country.
Cuomo also invited Randy Levine, Aaron Boone and Mariano Rivera of the Yankees to speak about the newly opened vaccination site at Yankee Stadium. “I played here and saved games. Now we’re saving lives here, ”said Rivera.
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Cuomo said a priority is to establish mass vaccination sites in areas of high positivity in black and Latin American communities. Yankee Stadium in the Bronx is only available to residents of this district, which still has some of the highest positivity rates in New York City.
Regarding Johnson & Johnson’s potential vaccine, which has the option of 100,000 doses by June, Cuomo said, “It’s a game changer. It’s a single dose, not two doses. “He said that change makes a huge logistical difference. He also pointed out that their vaccine requires conventional refrigeration rather than the substantial cold storage “which most facilities do not have” and that the Pfizer vaccine requires it.
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The governor also discussed variants of interest, saying that 59 cases of the British tribe have so far been identified in New York:
“The British tribe is reportedly up to 70% more transmittable. That’s a terrifying thought. So let’s watch it closely. CDC is watching, other countries are watching. But we now have 59 cases. Here you are. It’s all across the state and it’s something we’re watching, ”he said. Although he warned that a new strain would be more contagious, deadly, or more resistant to the vaccine, it could jeopardize the state’s progress in combating the vaccine. However, Cuomo said, “We are concerned with the here and now.”
|region||COVID patients currently hospitalized in the area||COVID patients as a percentage of the regional population||Percent of hospital beds available within 7 days under the surge plan|
|Central New York||182||0.02%||32%|
|New York City||3,698||0.04%||31%|
|Western New York||377||0.03%||36%|
The regional bed capacity and occupancy in the intensive care unit are as follows:
|region||Total number of ICU beds in the region||Total occupied beds in the intensive care unit in the region||Percent of ICU beds available in the region (7-day average)|
|Central New York||262||187||29%|
|New York City||2.607||2.108||21%|
|Western New York||545||350||38%|
Yesterday, New York State was reported 203,627 test results and 4.31 percent were positive. The average 7-day percentage of each region’s positive test results reported in the past three days is as follows:
|Central New York||3.03%||2.88%||2.82%|
|New York City||5.07%||5.01%||5.08%|
|Western New York||4.96%||4.96%||4.69%|
Of the total of 1,449,495 people who tested positive for the virus, the geographical breakdown is as follows:
|district||Overall positive||New positive|
On Thursday, 153 New Yorkers died of COVID-19 in New York state, bringing the total to 35,920. The geographical breakdown by country of residence is as follows: