Every county in New York state starting this Thursday you have the freedom to decide whether to continue with your contact tracing plans, which includes calling those who test positive for COVID-19, in order to identify more exposed people. Faced with this new decision of the State, the Health authorities of the Big Apple reported that on the contrary They will continue to optimize the monitoring of new infections.
“New York City operates the largest municipal contact tracing program in the country and will proudly continue to do so. Our mission ends when the pandemic ends, “he specified. Ted Long, director of the ‘NYC Test and Trace’ test and trace program in a statement.
This agency responsible for the massification of coronavirus discard tests and the search for contacts who may have been exposed to the virus, highlighted that “His work breaks the chains of transmission.”
In this sense, they outline new strategies to expand their services in the face of the overflow of new infections marked by the omicron variant, which although they have had a slight stabilization in New York City, continues to be a “picture” for the authorities of the City. to be followed carefully.
Spokespersons for NYC Test and Trace warn that to cope with the massive increase in positive cases, they have made changes such as send text messages, to connect people with available services.
Since this program was launched about 1,700 trackers hired of contacts who coordinate with community organizations, to create resource navigators that help those who are ill and need to isolate themselves through the plan ‘Take Care’.
Much emphasis has been placed on underlining the confidentiality of shared information, especially because of fears that it could arise in undocumented immigrants.
But while the City announced the reinforcement of all its screening plans, the New York State Department of Health will focus on this stage of the battle against the spread of the coronavirus in accentuating the mass testing and vaccination. With more emphasis on school settings.
Governor Kathy Hochul believes that “since we have 12,000 new cases per day, it’s almost impossible to do contact tracing the way we’ve done it in the past. “
Overcoming the peak?
Although the trends shown by the Government this Tuesday generally describe a “stabilization” of new cases specifically in the Big Apple, spokesmen for the City Department of Health (DOHMH) observe that it is still continuing “Squarely” in the wave caused by the fury of omicron that woke up during the past parties.
“There are preliminary signs that the level of cases may be stabilizing, but we must continue to closely monitor the data, in the coming days, to define a clearer trend. It is important to remember that hospitalizations and deaths lag behind cases, so the numbers in these indicators will occur later than the reported peak of new infections ”interpret sources consulted from DOHMH.
The City Health authorities emphasize that at this time of the pandemic scenario, the most important thing is to continue with the efforts of the vaccination, use of masks and discard tests.
“In this sense, the actions of New Yorkers will help flatten the curve and make a difference,” he stressed. Pedro Frisneda, DOHMH spokesperson.
Meanwhile, the Manhattan Borough President Marc Levine felt that The situation of COVID-19 now in the city is “too complicated” to define it simply as “it is stagnant,” he pointed out on his Twitter account.
“The positivity is dropping. Cases have more or less stabilized at a super high level. Hospitalizations and deaths continue to rise. This is still a moment of caution”Levine stressed.
“It depends on our behavior”
In the streets of the Big Apple the test centers look emptier than in previous weeks and some residents like the Puerto Rican Raymond Candelario, 66, considers that in general the authorities have “handled well” this new wave.
“I took the test, because I just came from Puerto Rico. And everything was very efficient in the center. It came out negative. I am triple vaccinated and there is nothing left to do but hope that this situation is controlled. But it is important to note that it also depends on our behavior that we end this. There are people who still do not want the vaccine“Reacted the Manhattan resident.
A similar opinion has the Dominican Beatriz Valentín, 50 years old, who adds that as the days go by, he observes more medical services affected by the number of workers who report sick.
“I had been calling for several days to have my medicines replaced at the pharmacy and they did not treat me. I had to come personally and what happened is that five people are infected. My annual checkup scheduled for next Monday, they changed it for the same reason in the hospital. Everything is getting worse, ”the immigrant reasoned at the gates of Mont Sinai Hospital on 10th Avenue in Manhattan.
Masks will remain mandatory
Throughout New York State, the average number of positive cases out of the total tests administered was 17.37% this Wednesday, in contrast to 18.61% the day before. Which means a slight decrease of almost 1.5%.
Although the expectation is a slowdown in infections, a process described by Hochul as “a ray of hope”, the mandate to use a mask will be maintained throughout the state, for now, until February 2.
“We must buy a little more time. This trend is completely new. Since we still have a couple more weeks. Businesses should continue to enforce this for the stated time. We need time and facts to make decisions, “said the state president.
Students demand hybrid class option
As the war against the pandemic continues from various fronts, the movements of students from several high schools in New York City who coordinated a class strike on Tuesday to demand remote learning and protested learning conditions that they described as “unsafe” , they assure that they will continue with other actions in the coming days.
The campaign organized by students and activists in some educational centers such as Bronx Science, Brooklyn Tech y Stuyvesant, requires the option of hybrid classes given the increase in cases in some neighborhoods and the rise in the number of discard tests in public schools.
“It is a lie about social distancing in classrooms. It is impossible to achieve this with overcrowded classrooms. The tests are not enough. In fact, the majority of classes are canceled because the teachers have gotten sick at least during my hours, “he told The newspaper, Micaela Sánchez, from a high school in the Bronx.
In response to the demand of several student associations, the spokesperson for the City Department of Education (DOE), Katie O’Hanlon, said in a statement that the voice of the school communities “is key and we will continue to listen and work closely with those most affected by our decisions: our students.”
The DOE says they have doubled testing at schools since classes resumed in January.
“It has been realized five million rapid tests to quickly identify cases, stop transmission, and safely keep schools open, “O’Hanlon said.
Students asking for remote options say that in-person learning is currently hampered as dozens of Students, Teachers, and Staff Tested Positive for COVID-19, while the omicron variant spreads “more strongly” through the city.
Figures of COVID-19 in NY:
- 58,770 test with positive results in the last hours in contrast to 48,686 on Tuesday.
- 12,671 people they are hospitalized with severe pictures of viral infection.
- 131 new inmates in health centers this Wednesday, far less than the 518 that required a hospital bed on Tuesday.
- 1,593 patients in intensive care units.
- 830 that had to be installed in mechanical ventilation mechanisms.
- 49,955 deaths had caused COVID-19 in NY until this Wednesday.
- 166 new deaths reported by health centers. This Tuesday 160 had been reported.
- 59 of these fatalities in the last days of the searches were in the Big Apple.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.