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COVID-19: County Assessing Possible 'Major Steps We May Need To Take' On Omicron, Latimer Says

The Westchester County COVID-19 map on Monday, Nov. 29.
The Westchester County COVID-19 map on Monday, Nov. 29. Photo Credit: Westchester County

County Executive George Latimer is ready to take “major steps” in Westchester if the Omicron COVID-19 strain poses as large a threat as many fear.

During a COVID-19 update on Monday, Nov. 29, Latimer addressed the new variant, which was just confirmed in neighboring Canada and could lead to a spike similar to when the Delta variant first began rapidly spreading earlier this year.

The World Health Organization identified the Omicron variant as one “of concern” at an emergency meeting over the holiday weekend.

With the new variant looming, local, county, and state officials have been taking measures to get ahead of it, as it is expected to make its way to the US in the coming weeks.

Westchester County Health Commissioner Sherlita Amler said that the Omicron variant has been reported in several countries, including neighboring Canada, though the Delta variant remains the dominant strain in the area and in the US.

In Westchester, Latimer said that they are “looking and assessing what are the major steps we may need to take,” Latimer said, including “reaching out to neighboring counties and local businesses.”

There are currently 52 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Westchester facilities, down from 244 at the same time last year, which Latimer attributed to the county’s 92.2 percent vaccination rate.

Of the COVID-19 patients hospitalized, approximately 67 percent are either unvaccinated or it is unclear if they are vaccinated, according to Latimer.

Since the pandemic began in March 2020, Latimer said that a total of 2,356 people in Westchester have died as a result of the virus, including three in the past three weeks.

According to the Westchester County Department of Health, there are more than 2,000 active cases as of Sunday, Nov. 28:

  • Yonkers: 419;
  • New Rochelle: 141;
  • Yorktown: 131;
  • Mount Vernon: 113;
  • White Plains: 104;
  • Eastchester: 101;
  • Mount Pleasant: 94;
  • Greenburgh: 93;
  • Cortlandt: 81;
  • Peekskill: 59;
  • Rye City: 58;
  • Mamaroneck Village: 56;
  • Tarrytown: 53;
  • North Castle: 52;
  • Somers: 50;
  • Ossining Village: 43;
  • Harrison: 42;
  • New Castle: 42;
  • Scarsdale: 40;
  • Bedford: 38;
  • Port Chester: 32;
  • Tuckahoe: 29;
  • Bronxville: 25;
  • Mamaroneck Town: 24;
  • Croton-on-Hudson: 23;
  • Dobbs Ferry: 23;
  • Lewisboro: 22;
  • Larchmont: 21;
  • Rye Brook: 21;
  • Pelham Manor: 20;
  • Hastings-on-Hudson: 19;
  • Pleasantville: 18;
  • Mount Kisco: 17;
  • Pelham: 16;
  • Pound Ridge: 15;
  • Irvington: 13;
  • North Salem: 13;
  • Ardsley: 11;
  • Sleepy Hollow: 10;
  • Briarcliff Manor: 8;
  • Buchanan: 7;
  • Elmsford: 4;
  • Ossining Town: 4.

“This battle is almost two years in the making and we don’t know how long it’s going to last,” Latimer said. “We want to prevent fatalities … We want to prevent people from dying.

“We will get through this,” Latimer concluded. “And we will get through this together.” 

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