Today is day 200 of the COVID crisis — it's been 200 days since New York State's first confirmed case of COVID. Since then, we have made tremendous progress, especially on testing. When this started, we had the capacity to conduct about 500 tests per day. Yesterday, we did 75,000 tests. Our reopening plan is striking a balance between opening as much as we can and still keeping the infection rate under control and the public's health front and center.
We're certainly in a new normal. We must continue to manage COVID. The crisis is less severe — but it's less severe because of the continued caution that New Yorkers are exercising and because of the safeguards that remain in place. The infection rate is hovering just below one percent, so we have very little room for error.
Photo of the Day: Art from "The State of Respect," a new campaign by Brooklyn creative agency Conquistadors that will be featured at MTA subway stations.
Here's what else you need to know tonight:
1. The deadline for health insurance special enrollment has been extended through December 31, 2020. New Yorkers without health insurance can apply for coverage through the NY State of Health Marketplace, by phone at 1-855-355-5777, or by connecting with a free enrollment assister.
2. The total number of hospitalizations remains low. Yesterday, there were 483 total hospitalizations. Of the 75,087 tests reported yesterday, 652, or 0.87 percent, were positive. Sadly, we lost four New Yorkers to the virus.
3. There's still time to respond to the Census. While 93.4 percent of New Yorkers have filled out the Census, we need to ensure every New Yorker is counted. There's still time left to respond. You can respond by mail, by phone at 844-330-2020 or online at https://my2020census.gov. Spread the word and let's Get Counted, NY.
4. The Nourish NY program has invested over $13 million connecting New York farms with families in need. The initiative has distributed 17.8 million pounds of dairy products to food banks, along with approximately 4.8 million pounds of produce. Over 610,000 households have received food sourced from 4,135 farms, which is helping keep businesses and families afloat.
5. Due to the pandemic, there is still a severe shortage of blood and blood donations are needed. Giving blood is safe: New York's blood donation centers have implemented precautions to minimize density and ensure the safety of donors and staff, including requiring donors to make an appointment. Learn more here.
Tonight's "Deep Breath Moment": A new red panda has arrived at the Seneca Park Zoo's Cold Asia exhibit. Willie, a five-year-old male named after country star Willie Nelson, came to New York from Zoo Knoxville in Tennessee, to mate with the zoo's female red panda, Starlight. You can visit Willie at the Seneca Park Zoo through timed entry tickets.
(Photo by Amy Burgess)
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Editor: Johnoy Harrison