ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) -New York’s Department of Health reports COVID-19 cases are growing and hospitalization rates are increasing as well. Officials are encouraging New Yorkers to be cautious during this time.

According to the Department of Health, COVID hospital admissions increased 22% as of August 2. They say the numbers add up to more than 100 admissions per day, lower than the height of the pandemic, but higher than the week before.

As a pediatrician, Dr. James Saperstone has served the Guilderland area before, during, and after the pandemic. Even with the main outbreak over, Saperstone says covid is making a seasonal comeback.

“We should be okay, but we still have to worry about people my age, over 70, and the very young and the people with underlying health conditions. We still haven’t got our hands around it. We saw a surge last summer, but here is a different ball game,” stated Saperstone.

Reported cases are up 55%, averaging 824 people with COVID a day statewide. Compared to years past, Saperstone says New Yorkers have an advantage. “We have so many people who are naturally exposed to COVID and have natural immunity and we have more and more people who at least have one and hopefully two or three boosters of COVID.”

The Department of Health recommends washing hands often, cleaning frequently touched surfaces, wearing masks, and getting vaccinated or boosted when eligible to prevent illness. “This vaccine uses a variant from the spring and so hopefully this one will cover a little more people,” described Saperstone.

If you have any symptoms of COVID, including a fever, aches, and chills, the state says you should get tested with at-home tests from local pharmacies. Prescriptions can also be received through doctors and health care clinics to begin treatment. “It’s going to be with us for a long time, if not forever, and we need to respect it. It’s going to be a major illness,” said Saperstone.