COVID positivity rates, hospitalizations are lowest since November, theaters expanding capacity

Photo provided by the Governor’s Office.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is celebrating the lowest COVID-19 positivity rate and the lowest number of hospitalizations since before the start of the holiday season last year.

During several appearances access the state this week, Cuomo celebrated the decline of COVID-19 positivity rate and hospitalizations, which have been the lowest since the pre-holiday season last year. 

“New Yorkers should be encouraged by the incredible progress they have made in reducing the infection rate and getting vaccinated,” Cuomo said on Monday, during a press conference in New York City.

The good news got better as the week progressed. As of Thursday, the statewide COVID-19 positivity rate was 2.76 percent, the lowest seven-day average since November 10, 2020. Data trends over a period of time such as seven-day averages are the preferred metric for tracking the spread of COVID. 

Patient hospitalization rates have also declined statewide with 3,567 patients being admitted within the same timeframe, being the lowest hospitalization rate since November 29 of last year, permitting increased capacity at indoor and outdoor entertainment such as movie theatres, arenas, museums, aquariums and zoos. 

The governor announced this week that movie theater capacity will increase to 33 percent starting April 26. 

And “low-risk,” indoor and outdoor arts and entertainment — including museums, aquariums, zoos and botanical gardens — will increase to 50 percent capacity also beginning April 26.

Beginning May 19, spectator capacity will increase to 25 percent at large-scale arenas, and event venues, including professional and collegiate sports, and major performances.

“While we are not yet out of the woods, thanks to the hard work of New Yorkers, we have been able to safely re-open more facets of our economy.”

Statewide, the availability of ICU beds in hospitals is 28 percent, based on the weekly average. However according to the surge plan that percentage is expected to jump to 35 percent within seven days. 

Some other relevant numbers this week, according to the Governor’s Office:

  • Test Results Reported: 147,583
  • Total Positive: 4,339
  • Net Change in Patient Hospitalization Past Week: -355
  • Patient Hospitalization: 3,783 (+29)
  • Patients Newly Admitted: 388
  • Hospital Counties: 54
  • Number ICU: 836 (-13)
  • Number ICU with Intubation: 521 (+1)
  • Total Discharges: 171,108 (+330)
  • Deaths: 44
  • Total Deaths: 41,530

“The light at the end of the tunnel has never been brighter and we must all remain vigilant and continue to practice the behaviors we know work to stop COVID in its tracks – wear a mask, wash your hands and social distance,” Cuomo said.