BREAKING – EXCLUSIVE: Allegany County COVID-19 cases nearly doubled last week over the prior seven-day period, soaring almost 14 times more than the comparable week a year ago, as nearly 85 percent of the U.S. population now is in a location with a medium or high COVID-19 Community Level.
The Allegany County Department of Health reported weekend numbers today, adding a dozen Friday, four Saturday and five yesterday to those we reported last week, as of Thursday, bringing the weekly total to 69, versus an even three dozen the week before.
As we also reported last week, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) raised the county’s good rating level, understated to begin with, to the medium status on Thursday, as more New York State counties entered the 85 percent higher levels.
The State Health Department is reporting that between July 2 and 9, 78.4 percent of all tests were showing positives from two recent strains, with 14.5 percent being BA.4 and 63.9 percent BA.5.
No cases of those variants have been reported yet for Allegany County, although the last test results are behind by a month or more.
The two strains are said to be the most easily spread strain to date and is able to evade immunity from both COVID infection, or natural immunity, and vaccination.
Individuals who are fully vaccinated and boosted to the extent authorized, however, are said to be in the best position to avoid hospitalization or death.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul is continuing to urge all eligible New Yorkers to be vaccinated and boosted and is recommending mask-wearing in certain settings.
She has declined, however, from announcing any new mandates or suggesting any new ones are under consideration, despite COVID levels being higher than last year and also are admittedly underreported due to many home test positives not being included in state and federal numbers.
Allegany’s COVID positive total as of yesterday is at 12,274, versus only 9,692 being registered by the state and federal governments. Most of the 2,582 difference has occurred since the end of last year as home testing took hold.
At the federal level, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra again has extended for another three months the U.S. public health emergency declaration which has been in effect since January 2020.
Several COVID-19 response policies are tied to the declaration, which also provides regulatory and funding flexibility.
Funding legislation, however, to address the COVID public health crisis, has been tied up in Congress for months.
The county health department has advised that it will update Allegany Hope by Friday as it relates to our daily Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) requests in regard to localized data detailing geographical areas of the county where new cases are located.
The maps accompanying this story show Allegany County in the yellow medium zone, as of Thursday, based on CDC numbers, along with the lower elevated numbers in New York State and region last month.
Click on the graphic and then use the “+” icon for an enlarged version.
The county is continuing to request that those testing positive through self or home tests enter the information at https://bit.ly/3zymEWF to aid in better determination as to the number of cases in the county and their general locations.
Various online COVID-19 Trackers, information from which may not agree with each other due to different reporting time frames, are available at:
– Allegany County Daily Cases – Under COVID-19 Updates: https://bit.ly/3ndrbZJ.
– New York State Department of Health COVID Tracker: https://on.ny.gov/31K0u7f.
– CDC Counties COVID Tracker: https://bit.ly/3GrWqHx.
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