New York found its first case of the most contagious variant strain of the coronavirus initially reported in the UK, Andrew Cuomo, the governor, said Monday.
The discovery raises concerns about threats to hospital capacity should it spread rapidly in the state, especially as efforts to vaccinate the public are delayed in the US, leading some states to threaten redistribute vaccines if hospitals do not receive injections in more arms. Quickly.
Cuomo reported that a man in his 60s who lives in a city north of the Albany state capital has the new strain.
The man, who is recovering, had not traveled recently, suggesting that community expansion is taking place. So far, the variant has been reported in Colorado, then California, and late last week in Florida.
New York state has run 5,000 tests for the new strain, and has only found one case so far.
Cuomo warned it could be a “game changer” if the new strain increases hospitalizations and forces regions to have to adopt new restrictions on business and social movements.
The virus variant is believed to have been in the US since October, although it has only been identified very recently and details of its origin and the match to a variant found in the UK are still being investigated.
Meanwhile, Cuomo, a Democrat, and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Republican, sought to expedite the delayed administration of coronavirus vaccines, warning hospitals Monday that they would reduce future allocations to those who do not administer the vaccines with fast enough.
In New York, hospitals must administer vaccines within a week of receiving them or face a fine and loss of future supplies, Cuomo said.
” I don’t want the vaccine in a refrigerator or freezer, I want it on someone’s arm,” he said. ” If you are not performing this function, it raises questions about the operational efficiency of the hospital.”
The federal government has distributed more than 15 million doses of vaccines to states and territories across the country, but only about 4.5 million have been administered so far, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. US Diseases (CDC) Released Monday.
The Trump administration had pledged to distribute and administer 20 million doses by the end of the year, but fewer than 3 million Americans were vaccinated before January 1.
Public health experts said the outcome was disappointing, calling for urgent funding for states and greater federal coordination, while warning that the chaos surrounding the introduction of coronavirus vaccines in the US was at risk. Hundreds of thousands more deaths.
US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams told CBS News that there are 15 to 20 million doses of vaccine available.
” We have to be hopeful about it and recognize that we have to do better and that we are going to continue to do better,” Adams said. “And I promise you that you will see that in the next two weeks the numbers increase substantially.”
The United States had reported a total of 20.5 million Covid-19 cases and more than 350 million deaths as of Monday, by far the highest figures in the world.
US hospitalizations for Covid-19 hit a record Sunday at 125,544 as hospitals struggled to cope and providers struggled to cope. Plans made ration attention.
Dr. Anthony Face, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, and others warn that a further increase is likely due to festive gatherings and cold weather that keeps people indoors.
” It could and probably will get worse in the next two weeks, or at least it will maintain this terribly high level of infections and deaths that we are seeing,” Face told ABC on Sunday.
In Florida, officials have put seniors ahead of many essential workers to receive the vaccine, although this led to many seniors lining up outside for many hours amid the chaos and official information websites and lines. Overwhelmed phone calls.
DeSantis announced a policy Monday that the state would assign doses to the hospitals that dispense them most Quickly.
” Hospitals that are not doing a good job of getting the vaccine will have their allocations transferred to hospitals that are doing a good job of getting the vaccine,” DeSantis said in a briefing.
” We do not want the vaccine to go inactive in some hospital system,” he added, although he did not say they would face fines.
Florida will also deploy an additional 1,000 nurses to administer vaccines and keep state-run vaccination sites open seven days a week, he said.
New York has dispensed about 175,000 doses of the 896,000 it has received since mid-December, according to CDC data. Florida has dispensed 265,000 of the 1.14 million doses it received.
Meanwhile, some Chicago public school teachers are staying home over coronavirus concerns ahead of an expected gradual return to the student classroom, which will begin next week with preschool-age children.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism