COVID-19 cases continue gradual decline as vaccine eligibility is expanded

File

File

The state is expanding the number of people eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, but the lack of vaccine supply could mean many people wind up frustrated despite their efforts. 

Sunday marked the first day that New Yorkers under age 65 with certain underlying health conditions were eligible to sign up for a COVID-19 vaccination. With a massive new slice of the state population qualifying for the vaccine overnight, a surge of attempted sign-ups appeared to slow the state vaccine website in the morning and stories and reports of struggles and delays signing up again circulated widely. 

State officials reported that by 11 a.m. on Sunday, 89 percent of the state’s allotted vaccine first doses had been administered –or over 1.9 million out of nearly 2.2 million doses. Another 842,000 second doses have also been administered, according to the state’s vaccination update Sunday. 

As of today, 3 million state residents over 16 with so-called “comorbidities” — such as obesity, diabetes and liver disease — can get a COVID-19 vaccine. Seven million state residents —  including health care workers and people over 65 — were already eligible under state rules.

However, the lack of vaccination doses has been a major problem. Residents have struggled to get appointments, as demand for the vaccine has far outstripped supply. 

LOCAL NUMBERS

The number of new COVID-19 cases counties are reporting continues to decline across the Capital Region, but the test positivity rates in Fulton County remain elevated compared to other counties.

While the seven-day positivity rates in Schenectady, Saratoga and Schoharie counties have stayed below 2 percent in recent days, the seven-day average in Fulton County still sat above 7 percent on Sunday, according to the latest infection data reported by the state. 

The county reported a total of 542 test results on Saturday, with 60 new cases identified, or over 11 percent of those tested. Only Hamilton County, the least populous county in the state, registered a higher test positivity rate than Fulton County this weekend, according to the state data. 

Schenectady and Saratoga counties both reported fewer total new cases on Saturday than Fulton — even as those counties tested three or four times the number of people. Schenectady found 47 new cases out of over 1,600 tests, and Saratoga found 45 new cases out of over 2,000 tests. Statewide infection data has also gradually and steadily declined over the past month. 

Information from The Associated Press was used in this story.

Categories: Fulton Montgomery Schoharie, News, Saratoga County, Schenectady County

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