New York State continues to aggressively track clusters with a particular focus on the 20 ZIP codes with the highest infection rates. Within these 20 "hotspot" ZIP codes, the average infection rate is 5.5 percent. The rate of infection for the rest of New York State, excluding those 20 ZIP codes, is 0.82 percent. While these 20 ZIP codes accounted for almost a quarter of yesterday's positive cases, they represent only 6 percent of the state's population.
Areas with high positivity rates now have access to rapid testing machines that the State has made available. If you live or work in one of the following ZIP codes please get a test:
Rockland County (10952, 10977), Brooklyn (11230, 11204, 11219, 11223, 11229, 11210, 11234), the Bronx (10465, 10462), Manhattan (10040), Queens (11374), Staten Island (10306, 10304), Suffolk County (11717, 11746) and Nassau County (11580).
If you live or work in one of these ZIP codes please get a test.
Here's what else you need to know:
1. New York's COVID positive test rate is hovering at just over one percent. Yesterday, there were 605 total hospitalizations. Of the 97,960 tests reported yesterday, 1,000, or 1.02 percent, were positive. Sadly, we lost nine New Yorkers to the virus.
2. Cost should not be a barrier for essential workers to access mental health services. The State Department of Financial Services is extending its emergency regulation requiring NY health insurers to waive out-of-pocket costs, including cost-sharing, deductibles, copays and coinsurance, for in-network mental health services for New York's frontline essential workers until November 27.
3. The state is working with Orthodox Jewish community leaders to develop an action plan encouraging community members to follow Coronavirus guidelines. I had a productive meeting with leaders of the community today to discuss how we can all work together to contain the spread of COVID that we're starting to see in some religious communities across the state. We will develop an action plan to protect the health and safety of these New Yorkers.
4. The State has issued updated guidance for taxis, for-hire vehicles and other transportation services. Drivers are encouraged to transport passengers with the windows down to increase ventilation, and to implement physical barriers between rider and driver, in addition to the mandatory mask wearing requirement for both drivers and passengers. See the updated guidance here.
5. National Governors Association Vice Chair Asa Hutchinson and I called on Congress to prioritize state and local aid. The pandemic is a national problem, affecting all states, and it demands a bipartisan and national solution. Read our joint statement.