New York with highest COVID-19 risk in US
New York with highest COVID-19 risk in US

New York with highest COVID-19 risk in US

New York is the only state in the United States with several counties at high risk for COVID-19 impacts, according to the latest data provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There are now 10 counties in the state at high risk for coronavirus disease, all in the Finger Lakes, Central New York, North Country and Southern Tier regions.

This comes as the state has identified two highly contagious omicron subspecies that are on their way through central New York and the surrounding regions where coronavirus spread is most prevalent.

The CDC calculates “high” risk based on confirmed COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people, as well as new hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients and percentage of staffed hospital beds occupied by those confirmed to have the disease.

By comparison, there is only one other county on the continental United States with a high risk of COVID-19 – and that is in Kansas.

Almost the entire country has a “low” risk of COVID-19. However, there are signs of increasing risk throughout New England, where large parts of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont are also now in the “medium” risk category for coronavirus.

Albany and Rensselaer counties, in addition to Rensselaer neighbors Berkshire County, Massachusetts and Bennington County, Vermont, were also at “medium” risk from Sunday.

While New York faces the greatest risk of coronavirus spread in the United States right now, there has been no indication that there will be a return to certain government mandates for pandemics, such as wearing a mask.

New York ended its mandate for the indoor mask in February; schools outside of New York City followed on March 2nd.

On Friday, ahead of the Easter and Easter holidays, the state health commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett “counseled” people “gather in indoor public spaces to consider wearing masks.”

The CDC designation recommends that people in “high” risk areas wear a mask indoors, be tested if symptoms occur, and that those who are medically vulnerable should take additional precautions to avoid infection.

But even if New York leads the nation in counties with “high” risk of COVID-19, will it then lead to more people becoming seriously ill from these new sub-variants?

Hospital admissions throughout the country, while moving up a bit, are still very low compared to the omicron rise in January. For example, COVID-19 admissions on Thursday were more than five people per. 100,000. While going back to March levels, COVID-19 admissions at the height of the winter rise were more than 62 people per year. 100,000 January 15th.

Also, as perhaps an indication that the focus should also be on disease treatment, the state noted Friday that in central New York, where the spread of coronavirus is greatest, “the use of therapeutic agents is significantly increasing.” The state noted the increased use of a drug called Paxlovid and the doubling of the use of Molnupiravir.

The state no longer wants people to look at the percentage of tests that return positive as a measure of the spread of COVID-19 because it said it no longer requires test centers to submit all of their data.

But judging by the number of new cases per. 100,000, the case frequency has more than doubled in the last two weeks in Finger Lakes, Mohawk Valley and Western New York and has almost doubled in the metropolitan area.

The New York counties with the highest risk of COVID-19 from the CDC’s Thursday data are: Broome, Cayuga, Jefferson, Lewis, Onondaga, Oswego, Seneca, St. Lawrence, Tioga and Wayne.

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