New York’s new COVID-19 strategy involves attacking clusters while causing the least amount of disruption

Coronavirus

ALBANY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Thanks to the robust testing by the New York State Health Department, New York can now specifically target hot spots that are most affected by COVID-19, without affecting the surrounding area.

At a press briefing Saturday, Governor Cuomo announced a new COVID-19 mitigation plan for New York State. 

The new “micro-cluster” strategy involves attacking the virus by placing restrictions on specific zip codes, neighborhoods and blocks based on their density of COVID-19 cases. 

Governor Cuomo says this will allow the state to effectively stop the spread of COVID-19 in the hot spots, without disrupting the economy in other parts of the state. This strategy would not be possible without the robust testing the state continues to do, according to the governor. 

At the beginning and at the height of the pandemic, restrictions were attached to the state as a whole or by a specific region. With this new strategy, only small hot spots or clusters will be impacted by increased restrictions. 

The governor says the clusters can be ever changing, as the positive rate rises or drops in an area. 

As of Saturday, Governor Cuomo said micro-clusters existed in Brooklyn, Queens, Rockland and Orange counties. 

The governor said if a micro-cluster is identified, there will be red, orange and yellow zones within the cluster that will carry a varying set of restrictions. 

Governor Cuomo did want to point out that the hot spots are only a relative problem to New York. According to Cuomo, the overall COVID-19 positive rate for just the hot spots in New York is still lower than the positive rate of 34 states. 

For more local COVID-19 data, click here.

You can watch the entire press conference from Saturday in the video below:


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