Mayor concerned as COVID cases in New York City continue to go up

Mayor Bill de Blasio holds a media availability. City Hall. Thursday, May 28, 2020.
Credit: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office

By Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech 

Officials are keeping an eye on a “worrisome” uptick in city coronavirus cases.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Wednesday he is concerned over an increasing COVID positivity rate among New York City residents suspected of having the virus and subsequently admitted to hospitals. City Hall reported on Monday, Nov. 2, 114 New York City residents were admitted to a hospital with suspected COVID-19 with 25.8 % testing positive for the virus.

“That’s cause for concern,” said de Blasio. “The silver lining of that is of those 114 patients only a quarter actually have COVID-19 and that is a level we can manage. But the fact that that has gone up worries me.”

De Blasio said he is also concerned over the overall rising number of reported COVID cases in the five boroughs which has surpassed the city’s threshold of 550 since Oct. 29. Officials on Wednesday said that the total number of cases in the city based on City Hall’s seven-day average reached 628 on Monday while the state reported 802 new cases of the virus in the city on Tuesday.

Since the pandemic reached New York City last spring, City Hall has reported three daily coronavirus indicators with a two-day lag. City officials keep track of reported COVID cases based on a seven-day average, the number of New Yorkers admitted to hospitals testing positive for the virus as well as daily and weekly positivity rates. De Blasio has warned that passing thresholds within these indicators will result in new restrictions in the city.

De Blasio rationalized the uptick in positive COVID cases to clusters of the virus that popped up last month in some Brooklyn and Queens neighborhoods and expanded testing efforts, taking a moment to remind reporters that the city is now able to conduct over 75,000 coronavirus tests in a day.

The city’s daily COVID positivity rate remains at an acceptable level with 1.54% of New York City residents testing positive for the virus. The number of New Yorkers testing positive for COVID based on a seven-day average is slightly higher at 1.74%.

“That’s not where we want to be for the long term so we are going to have to really buckle down and push that number down,” de Blasio said.

This story first appeared on amny.com.

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