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Cuomo says New York's COVID-19 hospitalization rate is dropping

Gov. Andrew Cuomo holds a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine. (FILE)
Gov. Andrew Cuomo holds a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine. (FILE)
Gov. Andrew Cuomo holds a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine. (FILE)
Credit WMHT/File Photo
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Gov. Andrew Cuomo holds a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine. (FILE)

The hospitalization rate in New York due to COVID-19 has steadily dropped in recent weeks, according to state data, with two consecutive days of significant declines Wednesday and Thursday.

Hospitalizations in New York declined by more than 200 on Thursday, bringing the number of people hospitalized down to 8,846 — less than half of the pandemic’s peak in April.

Between the ups and downs, hospitalizations in New York only increased by a net 38 people over the past week, according to state data. That factors in the number of people admitted, those who were discharged, and those who died.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that the trend is something to be optimistic about, but that people should still be cautious as the state continues to grapple with the latest surge of the virus.

“We just need to keep the arrows pointed down,” Cuomo said. “But, never get cocky with COVID.”

According to the data, there was an average daily increase of five hospitalizations in New York over the past week. That’s a significant change compared to early December, when 152 people were being hospitalized on average each day.

By region, Long Island and the Finger Lakes currently have the highest rate of hospitalizations, with both areas reporting 0.06% percent of their population as hospitalized. That’s followed by the Capital Region, Mid-Hudson, and Mohawk Valley.

Cuomo is hoping to keep those numbers at bay as the state continues its rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, which has now been administered to more than 1.1 million people in New York. About 170,000 people have received the second, and final, dose.

But, as of Friday, Cuomo said that New York had allocated its entire supply of the vaccine, and is now seeking to have the federal government send nearly triple as many doses per week to the state as it does now.

Cuomo said New York has the capacity to vaccinate up to 100,000 people each day, but isn’t being sent enough doses to meet that goal.

“We will, by the end of today, fully utilize all of the dosages that have been delivered,” Cuomo said Friday afternoon.

More doses are arriving at vaccination sites and health care providers around the state, Cuomo said, but not enough to keep up with demand. The state has estimated that more than 7 million people are currently eligible to be vaccinated.

President Joe Biden has committed to using the federal Defense Production Act to ramp up supply of the vaccine, but it’s unclear when that will mean an increase in doses for New York.

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