For the first time in nearly a week, the Hudson Valley saw a downtick - however small - in its positive COVID-19 infection rate as the region reported more than 1,000 new cases for the second straight day.
According to the state Department of Health, the average seven-day COVID-19 infection rate is down to 4.66 percent on Wednesday, March 17, from 4.67 percent the day before, still the highest rate in the state, ahead of Long Island (4.49 percent), and New York City (4.15 percent).
A total of 1,090 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the Hudson Valley out of thousands of tests administered in the area on Wednesday, officials announced.
Statewide, the average seven-day positive infection rate also rose from 3.22 percent on Sunday, March 14 to 3.28 percent on March 17, the same as the previous day.
As of Thursday, March 18, there were 499 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in the Hudson Valley, representing 0.02 percent of the region's population and leaving 44 percent of the region's hospital beds still available.
The state was also reporting 397 of the region's 679 ICU beds as occupied by COVID-19 patients, leaving 42 percent available in case of another surge of the virus.
A breakdown of new cases in each of the Hudson Valley's seven counties is as follows:
- Westchester: 403 new (114,402 total);
- Rockland: 187 (41,359);
- Orange County: 235 (41,546);
- Dutchess: 126 (24,282);
- Ulster County: 80 (10,973);
- Putnam: 37 (8,928);
- Sullivan: 22 (5,114);
- Total: 1,090 (245,510).
New deaths were also reported in:
- Westchester: 4 (2,159 total);
- Rockland: 1 (702);
- Orange: 0 (661);
- Dutchess: 0 (418);
- Ulster: 0 (233);
- Putnam: 0 (88);
- Sullivan: 0 (62).
- Total: 5 (4,323).
There were 271,463 COVID-19 tests administered in New York on March 1 7 according to Cuomo, resulting in 7,796 new cases for a 2.87 percent positive infection rate, down from the previous day.
Eighty-eight more COVID-19 patients were discharged from New York hospitals, leaving 4,536 still being treated statewide. There are 934 in ICU and 590 intubated.
There were 57 new COVID-19-related deaths reported in the past 24 hours.
"Every day more and more New Yorkers are getting vaccinated, bringing us that much closer to the light at the end of the tunnel," Cuomo said. "As we ramp up vaccine distribution and more New Yorkers become eligible, we are able to start getting our economy back on track and adjust to life in a post-pandemic world.
"We are headed in the right direction, but it is still crucial that we continue to practice the guidelines that stop the spread of COVID: wear a mask, social distance and wash your hands," the governor continued. "This war can and will be won, but we must collectively work together to see that day."
Statewide, a total of 1,757,493 positive COVID-19 cases have been confirmed out of more than 42 million tests that have been administered. There have been a total of 39,748 virus-related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.
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