Feb 22, 2021
- From day one, we have said that our COVID recovery is not a choice between public health and the economyâit has to take into account both and work for all. Thanks to the hard work of all New Yorkers, our infection rate is now the lowest we've seen in three months, and accordingly, we are now in a position to reopen more recreational activities across the state. Movie theaters in New York City, along with any other areas of the state where they have been closed, are permitted to reopen March 5 at 25 percent capacity, with no more than 50 people per screen at a time. Other safety protocols, including assigned seating and social distancing, will be in place. We must continue to collectively work hard to ensure our numbers keep going in the right direction, which will allow us to safely reopen as much as possible as safely as possible.
Photo of the Day: This weekend, the inaugural NY Pops Up performance was held at the Javits Center in New York City in tribute to the National Guard and other staff there
(Photo by Don Pollard)
Here's what else you need to know tonight:
1. COVID hospitalizations rose slightly to 5,804. Of the 142,019 tests reported yesterday, 6,146, or 4.33 percent, were positive. There were 1,148 patients in ICU yesterday, down 14 from the previous day. Of them, 780 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 89 New Yorkers to the virus.
2. As of 11am this morning, 93 percent of first doses allocated to the state have been administered. This represents 2,228,283 first doses administered of the 2,406,535 first dose allocations received from the federal government. So far, 1,155,870 second doses have been administered out of the 1,337,275 second doses received. See data by region and county on the State's Vaccine Tracker: ny.gov/vaccinetracker.
3. There are still hundreds of appointments available at the Medgar Evers College and York College vaccination centers for eligible New Yorkers. Both these sites, established in partnership with FEMA, open Wednesday and will vaccinate 3,000 New Yorkers a day, seven days a week. For the Medgar Evers College vaccination center, eligible New Yorkers who live in the following ZIP codes can book an appointment today: 11207, 11212, 11208, 11206, 11233, 11213, 11221, 11226, 11236, 11225, 11210, 11203, 11238. For the York College vaccination center, eligible residents in these ZIP codes can book today: 11436, 11434, 11433, 11419, 11413, 11412, 11422, 11429, 11420, 11411, 11418, 11435, 11428, 11423, 11432, 11427, 11439, 11691, 11692, 11693. Next week, scheduling opens to any eligible resident of Queens or Brooklyn. If you're eligible, schedule your appointment HERE or by calling 1-833-967-4829.
4. New regulations on nursing home visitations will go into effect Friday, February 26. These full guidelines depend on a county's COVID risk level, and continue to depend on the nursing home facility being free of COVID-19 cases for 14 days. For counties with COVID-19 positivity rates between 5-10 percent (on a 7-day rolling average), visitor testing is required and visitors must have a negative test before entry. For counties with COVID-19 positivity rates below 5 percent, visitor testing is strongly encouraged and rapid tests maybe be utilized. Alternatively, visitors may provide proof of a completed COVID-19 vaccination no less than 14 days from the date of the visit. Visitation was not be permitted if the county's COVID-19 positivity rate is greater than 10 percent. Compassionate care visits are always permitted.
5. Beginning March 15, weddings and catered events can resume statewide. Venues are restricted to 50 percent capacity, with no more than 150 people per event. All attendees and patrons must be tested prior to the event. Mask wearing and other safety protocols will be required.
Tonight's "Deep Breath Moment": When Texas was hit with a historic winter storm that left thousands without power, an Italian restaurant met the crisis with action to help feed the community. Ari and Blinera Isufaj, owners of the Bella Italia Ristorante in Plano, Texas, worked through the freezing temperature and snow to provide hundreds of meals to Texans without electricity. The restaurant first opened in 2019, at the start of the pandemic, and the community supported them during their difficult time. So it was natural that when this same community was in need, the restaurant wasted no time in returning the favor.
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