ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — On Thanksgiving, Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy reported that there has been one new death in the county: a man in his 80s who did not live in a nursing home. This brings the Albany County death toll to 151.
“It’s here, people. The second wave’s here,” McCoy said.
With 100 new cases identified since Wednesday, there have been 5,367 total confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Albany County. There are 949 active cases in the county, and 90.6 is the five-day average for new daily positives. Among the new cases, three had traveled out of state, two live or work in a health care setting, 11 reported close contact with other positives, and 84 reported no clear source of infection.
Since November 1, 1,849 new positives have been reported. By McCoy’s count, that’s nearly 34% of all positive cases since the outbreak began, or more than a third in a little over three weeks. He said the problem is not just local in Albany County, but in Schenectady, Rensselaer, Erie, and Westchester Counties.
In Albany County, the current daily average of new positives is 90.6. On Wednesday, it was 93. Thursday marks the fourth day in a row with a rolling average above 3%. Ten days is the state’s benchmark for being considered a yellow zone cluster.
There are currently 2,714 people quarantined. Of the 21,785 who’ve gone through the quarantine process, 4,418 had tested positive and recovered. Since Wednesday, 57 new recoveries were reported.
Around Albany County, 41 individuals remain hospitalized from the coronavirus, with 10 in the ICU. The hospitalization rate is 0.76%.
“Do the right thing for the next couple weeks. Do the right thing today, and we’ll get through this,” McCoy said. He said that there have been record numbers seeking tests. He said a negative COVID test does not mean you can ignore social distancing guidelines or limits on gatherings. He also sent a reminder on behalf of health care workers: “People, remember: these doctors and nurses are doing the best they can, and we’ve gotta work with them.”
Albany County Sheriff Craig T. Apple was also present to address the controversial 10-person gathering limit mandated by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. He said:
If you see me come to your house today, you have bigger problems than having ten people there. We don’t have time or the resources to be out doing that. What this comes down to is personal accountability, and we’re just asking everybody: Just follow the guidelines and do the right thing. If you have a house full, if you have 15, 18, 20 people, then you’re going to have to deal with the consequences if somebody gets sick, right? Because that person’s probably a family member.”Albany County Sheriff Apple
Apple opined that in the midst haggling over 10 people, we’ve lost sight of other ongoing problems, like mental health, suicides, sky high overdoses, unemployment, violence, and businesses closing at an exponential rate just in the Capital District. Millions of families are scrambling for something to eat on Thanksgiving, Apple said, “and here we are worried about whether we’re going to have ten or eleven people at our house.”
McCoy recommends video calling to keep numbers down among family members. “For all the people that love their mother in laws, it’s the best thing, you get to facetime them,” he said. “Hopefully, she’s not watching this.”
McCoy ended the coronavirus update with a request to shop local during the upcoming holiday. “You’re putting local people to work, and you’re supporting people that aren’t a fortune 500 company,” he said.
Even small mom and pop stores in the area have done their best to migrate online. “You might spend a little bit more, but they’re the ones paying the taxes in the county,” McCoy said. “And they’re the ones paying all the state taxes.”
Both McCoy and Apple repeated the same ideas, along with handwashing and coughing or sneezing into the crook of your arm:
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