New Yorkers fought through the holiday surge of COVID-19 and we're seeing that reflected in the numbers. For 41 days straight, our 7-day average positivity rate has declined and is now at 3.61 percent. We have the lowest single-day positivity rate since November 23rd. But despite the promising news, we're not at the end of the tunnel yet. We need everyone to double down on the behaviors that make such a difference in combatting this pandemic. Wash your hands, wear a mask, stay socially distanced, be safe and be New York Tough.
Here's what else you need to know tonight:
1. COVID hospitalizations dropped to 6,434. Of the 215,731 tests reported yesterday, 6,794, or 3.15 percent, were positive. There were 1,258 patients in ICU yesterday, down 15 from the previous day. Of them, 863 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 114 New Yorkers to the virus.
2. As of 11am this morning, 90 percent of first doses allocated to the state have been administered. This represents 2,109,690 first doses administered of the 2,335,250 first dose allocations received from the federal government. So far, 984,100 second doses have been administered out of the 1,284,300 second doses received. See data by region on the State's Vaccine Tracker: ny.gov/vaccinetracker.
3. New York's health insurance Open Enrollment Period will be further extended to May 15, 2021, aligning with states across the country. With this extension, New York joins the federal Marketplace and other state-based Marketplaces giving consumers even more time to enroll for 2021. New Yorkers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health, New York's health insurance Marketplace, or directly through insurers.
4. Get your Moderna COVID vaccine questions answered. Tomorrow, February 19, at 6:30pm, the NYS COVID-19 Vaccine Equity Task Force is hosting a Fireside Chat with clinicians and community members on the topic of the Moderna vaccine, featuring a representative from Moderna. You can watch the event live tomorrow evening at ny.gov/VETF. You can also register for this event (not required) as a means of adding the event to your calendar and for reminders.
Tonight's "Deep Breath Moment": Spreading kindness and appreciation is as easy as leaving a note. At our State-run vaccination site at the Javits Center in Manhattan, one New Yorker left a thank you note for the staff at the site after getting their vaccine shot. Almost instantly, others followed suit. Now, bulletin boards at the Javits are covered in notes expressing much-deserved thanks to our hard-working vaccinators and staff. As I've said before, New Yorkers are tough but they're also loving and this is just more proof of that.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo