Chart of the Day: The estimated rate of transmission has dropped below one in New York.
Here's what else you need to know tonight:
1. Total hospitalizations are at 8,730. Of the 219,538 tests reported yesterday, 12,003, or 5.47 percent were positive. There were 1,522 patients in ICU yesterday, down five from the previous day. Of them, 1,005 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 167 New Yorkers to the virus.
2. As of 1:00pm today, New York's health care distribution sites have administered 91 percent of first dose vaccinations. 1,180,468 first doses have been administered out of a total allocation of 1,304,050 first doses (this data excludes the federally run Long Term Care Facility program). These sites have administered 71 percent of first and second doses.
3. So far, 72 percent of New York State hospital workers received the COVID vaccine. We will continue encouraging our health care heroes to get the vaccine—which helps ensure the integrity of our entire hospital system.
4. New York is expanding its deployment of community vaccination kits to further strengthen fairness and equity in the vaccine distribution process. Last week, New York successfully piloted the deployment kits to five NYCHA senior housing developments and eight churches and cultural centers where nearly 4,200 seniors and eligible New Yorkers received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Kits are now being redeployed to four additional NYCHA sites and eight other churches to further build on that progress. In total, this initiative is expected to provide first doses of the vaccine to an additional 3,000 seniors and eligible New Yorkers by Tuesday. The sites will be stood up again in three weeks to administer second doses.
5. Beware of COVID vaccine fraud. To help root out vaccination fraud or scams across the State, New York established a hotline that New Yorkers can call to report suspected fraud. It is a red flag if anyone is promising you the vaccine in exchange for payment. To make a report, call 1-833-VAX-SCAM (1-833-829-7226) or email STOPVAXFRAUD@health.ny.gov
6. Following the region's positivity rate decline, elective surgeries can resume in Erie County. The county's positivity has steadily declined for nearly three weeks, from 8.6 percent in early January to 5.2 percent yesterday (on a 7-day rolling average). Hospitalizations have declined from 427 on December 31 to 323 yesterday. The county's hospital capacity is at 48 percent.
Tonight's "Deep Breath Moment": The Animal Medical Center in New York City honored two remarkable dogs for their work supporting health care heroes. At their virtual gala, the AMC, the world's largest non-profit animal hospital, recognized Hunter, a registered therapy dog affiliated with Hudson Valley Paws for a Cause, and Dogtor Loki, as "Top Dog Honorees." Hunter, a 10-year-old Standard Poodle, has worked with recruits at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point since 2013 and at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Montrose, NY. Dogtor Loki, a 3-year-old Rottweiler, works at the University of Maryland Medical Center, providing much-needed comfort to the hospital's patients and staff during a challenging year. Thank you to these remarkable animals!
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo