Governor Andrew M. Cuomo updated New Yorkers yesterday on the state’s progress during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s all about hospitalization rate and hospital capacity. In the broad scope of things, we’re dealing with increases in hospitalizations, but we’re doing dramatically better than essentially every other state in the country. The total number of hospital beds in the state is 53,000 – currently, 35,000 beds are occupied, and about 4,000 of those with COVID patients. At our height, we had about 19,000 people hospitalized with COVID, to put this recent increase in perspective,” Governor Cuomo said. “The next chapter is going to be vaccine distribution and vaccine acceptance. The vaccine is the weapon that is going to win the COVID war, and that is the light at the end of the tunnel. It’s not a short tunnel, but we know the way through this. We just have to get there, and we have to get there with as little as loss of life as possible.”
The Governor also announced he will be signing an executive order expanding eligibility for New York State’s COVID Rent Relief Program and reopening its application window. The Program, which was created by the state legislature when it passed the Emergency Rent Relief Act of 2020, appropriated up to $100 million from the federal CARES Act to provide subsidies for tenants who lost income due to the pandemic. Based on the legislature’s parameters, as much as $40 million is expected to be paid to eligible applicants of approximately 15,000 New York households. This executive order will expand the program’s eligibility so more rent relief can be provided to New Yorkers. Additional details will be available in the coming days.
Additionally, New York State is partnering with Prescryptive Health to provide expanded COVID-19 testing capacity across New York State. The partnership will help expand testing capacity in areas where testing access is limited and will include 150 new rapid testing locations statewide opening in the coming weeks where testing will be offered. Prescryptive’s digital health platform will manage the deployment of rapid test kits provided by New York State, and provide the technology to manage inventory, schedule appointments, and report results in a timely manner. Residents can find participating sites, schedule a test, receive results, and follow-up with licensed clinicians directly from their mobile devices. All testing sites will be searchable on the state’s COVID test site website () and appointments for these sites will be also available at .
Prescryptive Health CEO Chris Blackley said, “Prescryptive Health is proud to partner with the State of New York and community pharmacies to provide rapid COVID-19 testing-particularly to those where testing access is limited. Our technology allows us to deliver testing at scale, with the safety, security, and timeliness people need.”
The Governor noted that the positive testing rate in all focus areas under the state’s Micro-Cluster strategy is 5.91 percent, and outside the focus zone areas is 4.49 percent. Within the focus areas, 50,800 test results were reported yesterday, yielding 3,003 positives. In the remainder of the state, not counting these focus areas, 152,640 test results were reported, yielding 6,852 positives.
Numbers of Covid-19 cases in Herkimer County as of 12pm 12/03/2020: