As COVID-19 rates increase, feds extends transit mask mandate

As COVID-19 rates increase, feds extends transit mask mandate

East Farmingdale, NY- The COVID-19 infection rate in New York State is up 50% from last week.  The statewide hospitalization rate has also increased 29%.  From New York State data released on Wednesday, 6,546 people tested positive statewide and 1,164 New Yorkers are currently hospitalized with COVID-19.

Governor Kathy Hochul said Wednesday, “Those who are traveling should get tested before they leave home, and those who test positive should stay home and discuss possible treatment options with their doctor. Vaccination remains the key to preventing serious illness from COVID and keeping people out of the hospital. We continue to encourage all New Yorkers to get vaccinated, and for those 55 and up to get their second booster shot.”

The seven day positivity rate for Long Island is now at 4.95% – but due to an increase in at home rapid testing, health officials now advise that the best metric to monitor community spread of COVID-19 is the cases per 100,000 rate. On Wednesday the cases per 100K rate for Long Island was at 26.33. During the height of Omicron, the cases per 100K rate on Long Island had risen over 150.

On Wednesday the Centers for Disease Control extended the nationwide mask mandate for mass transit. The masking rule for trains, subways, busses and airplanes has been extended through May 3rd. The CDC said it will take the time to “asses the impact the rise of cases has on severe disease, including hospitalizations and deaths, and health care system capacity.” 

-With the Associated Press

Photo: FILE – Travelers queue up in long lines to pass through the south security checkpoint in Denver International Airport, Wednesday morning, June 16, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)