As has been clear during this pandemic, people with comorbidities and underlying conditions are more likely to succumb to COVID-19.
With that in mind, adult New Yorkers of any age with qualifying conditions will be eligible for the COVID vaccine beginning February 15. Eligible conditions include cancer, chronic kidney disease, pulmonary disease, diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2), heart conditions, pregnancy, obesity, sickle cell disease, liver disease and more.
We're committed to vaccinating vulnerable populations that have suffered the most as we distribute a vaccine that is still in extremely limited supply. We are asking local governments to begin getting ready now to vaccinate New Yorkers with these conditions.
The full list of comorbidities and underlying conditions is available here.
Photo of the Day: The vaccination site at Yankee Stadium opened its doors this morning (by appointment only) to eligible Bronx residents. (Photo by Don Pollard)
Here's what else you need to know tonight:
1. Yankee Stadium opened today as the first mass vaccination site reserved for Bronx residents. I thank our partners SOMOS, the City of New York, the New York National Guard, and especially the Yankees for stepping up to the plate. If you're an eligible Bronx resident, call 1-833-SOMOSNY or visit somosvaccinations.com to schedule an appointment. Appointments are required.
2. COVID hospitalizations dropped to 7,937. Of the 203,627 tests reported yesterday, 8,777, or 4.31 percent, were positive. This is the lowest daily positivity rate since November 28, 2020. There were 1,516 patients in the ICU yesterday, up 10 from the previous day. Of them, 1,000 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 153 New Yorkers to the virus.
3. As of 11am this morning, 93 percent of first doses received by the State have been administered. This represents 1,539,355 first doses administered of the 1,661,290 first dose allocations received from the federal government. So far, 413,512 second doses have been administered out of 794,650 second doses received. See data by region on the State's Vaccine Tracker.
4. An update on the UK virus variant. Fifteen additional cases of the UK variant of the COVID-19 virus were identified in New York State. To date, there are 59 known cases of the variant in New York State in the following counties: Jefferson, Niagara, Allegany, Tompkins, New York City (multiple boroughs), Westchester, Nassau, Suffolk, Saratoga, Ulster, Onondaga, Warren and Essex Counties.
5. Watching the Super Bowl? Celebrate smart. I've said before that we can't ever be cocky with COVID. I encourage New Yorkers who are planning to watch the Big Game on Sunday to take precautions and to not attend or host large Super Bowl parties. As a reminder, private gatherings in residences remain limited to no more than 10 people. The safest way to watch the Super Bowl is with your immediate household only.
Tonight's "Deep Breath Moment": After a pelican got lost and ended up in the cold waters of Connecticut, a local flying club helped the bird find its way south. Pelicans are seldom seen north of Virginia, so it was a surprise when a pelican was found, half-frozen and injured, in a Connecticut marina—perhaps having been blown too far north in a storm. Fortunately, the pelican, named Arvay, was rescued and given care that saved its life. A pilot at a Connecticut flying club then flew the bird to Florida in her small plane.
"I just love animals and do anything I can to help animals, so when I saw this and saw he needed to get to his new home, I figured why not help out,"
said the pilot, Arianna Strand. Arvay is now recovering at the Busch Wildlife Sanctuary in Jupiter, Florida.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo