Hochul hopeful omicron may be cresting in NY state

Gov. Hochul says New York state might be cresting over its omicron peak.

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Hochul reported 48,686 positive cases and 160 new deaths in her Tuesday briefing. That’s an 18.6% statewide positivity rate, which while still high, is still significantly lower than the more than 23% that the state had about a week ago.

"We are not at the end, but I want to say that this is, to me, a glimmer of hope. A glimmer of hope in a time when we desperately need that," said Hochul.

Hochul noted while the state average is going down, some individual areas – including the Capital Region, are still seeing increases in cases. However, New York City is starting to plateau.

There are currently 12,540 people in the hospital. The numbers continue to rise, but Hochul says the rate of increase is slowing.

She also noted a significant chunk of those patients were admitted for something else, and then just happened to test positive for COVID while there.

Hochul once again reiterated that people should not go to the emergency room to simply to get a COVID test.

In addition, Hochul also announced a new push to get kids ages 5 to 11 vaccinated with many new #VaxForKids pop-up sites coming soon, and an increased advertising campaign.

As of Jan. 10, 32.2% of kids 5-11 and 73.4% of adolescents 12-17 have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose In addition, 21.6% of kids 5-11 and 65.4% of adolescents 12-17 have completed their initial vaccine series.

Even with the turnaround in positive rates, Hochul said it’s still too many to try and conduct full contact tracing, so you may not get a call from anyone after testing positive. That will now be up to the discretion of county governments.

Hochul said 7.6 million testing kits have already been delivered to schools, and a million have been sent to nursing homes.

The governor was asked if we might see the mask mandate lifted soon if the downward trend in positive cases continues.

Hear her response by watching the video of Jerry Gretzinger’s story.

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MORE: New York State Coronavirus Dashboard | Vaccine Tracker