On Sunday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo sounded a grim warning to all Big Apple residents, saying New York had just hit its highest rate of positive COVID-19 tests since May.
Just as New Yorkers began feeling some respite in the virus uptick since the colossal and extremely devastating first wave in the city, the din warning of another wave has been sounded, as the nation gets closer to a possible vaccine approval.
On Sunday, Cuomo said that the positive-test-rate figure is the most accurate in terms of predicting worrisome potential spikes, which, according to the latest data, showed that the state’s percentage Saturday was 4.27, up from 3.9 the day before. The state last hit 4.2 percent on May 20, according to its Web site. It went over 4.2 percent on May 18.
“This is a new phase for COVID. You want to call it the winter phase. You want to call it the holiday phase. You want to call it the surge upon surge phase,” Cuomo told reporters on a conference call. “That’s where we are.” He said the recent uptick in cases is still part of the virus’s “first wave. “If you look at New York versus other states, New York is doing very, very well,” the governor said. “If you look at New York relative to only New York, you see the numbers going up. Not as fast as in other states, but the numbers are going up.”
Reporting the number of hospitalizations on Sunday, Cuomo said 55 people were reported to have died from COVID-19 on Saturday, while hospitalizations and ICU patients rose slightly. He said the state would be revealing its “winter plan,” or “next-phase plan,” to keep the virus in check starting Monday.
Looking at the broader spectrum of things, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert said on Sunday that the US may see “surge upon a surge” of the coronavirus over the coming weeks, and he does not expect current recommendations around social distancing to be relaxed before Christmas.
Speaking to ABC, Fauci said, “When you have the kind of inflection that we have, it doesn’t all of a sudden turn around like that. So clearly in the next few weeks, we’re going to have the same sort of thing. And perhaps even two or three weeks down the line … we may see a surge upon a surge.”
The number of new Covid-19 cases reported in the United States topped 200,000 for the first time Saturday. The highest previous daily count was 196,000 on November 21, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.