Coronavirus Information: NYC headed towards extra restrictions, Governor Cuomo warns

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NEW YORK (WABC) – If New York City’s COVID-19 positivity rate exceeds three percent, the city will become an orange zone under the state’s COVID-19 microcluster strategy, Governor Cuomo said on Wednesday.

That would mean that the city’s schools would be closed to personal learning.

If so, schools would have to close for at least four days, and Cuomo said officials would have to come up with a “different formula” for the city’s schools to “test” and reopen as the number of students required getting tested.

What you should know about coronavirus:
Where to be tested in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut
Coronavirus by zip code – New York City
How the coronavirus changed the New York area
Do you have coronavirus symptoms?
NYC COVID-19 Positivity Rate Tracker

Here are more headlines from today:

Member Lamont’s security detail is positive
A member of Governor Ned Lamont’s security team has tested positive for COVID-19, according to test results that came back on Wednesday. The member of the security detail entered self-isolation immediately.

Lamont remains in self-quarantine in his private apartment after being exposed to an executive last week.

Regional governors encourage college students to get tested
The Governor of New York, Andrew M. Cuomo, the Governor of New Jersey, Phil Murphy, the Governor of Connecticut, Ned Lamont, the Governor of Delaware, John Carney, the Governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, the Governor of Rhode Island, Gina Raimondo, and Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, announced today that they will be encouraging residential colleges and universities in their respective states to offer tests for all students traveling home for Thanksgiving break as much as possible, before they leave campus. Any student who tests positive will be asked to isolate themselves on campus before traveling with the local health department or making arrangements to travel home safely.

The United States exceeds 250,000 confirmed COVID-19 deaths
The United States exceeded 250,000 confirmed COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday night, according to a count from Johns Hopkins University.

Cuomo’s Thanksgiving warning
Governor Andrew Cuomo gives New Yorkers some personal advice on Thanksgiving Day: Don’t be a turkey. On Wednesday, Cuomo warned that his personal theory is that there will be a “huge spike” in COVID-19 cases after Thanksgiving. He said this was not based on scientific data but was his personal theory. He urged families to show love by not seeing each other this holiday season.

NYC schools close Thursday
New York Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza released a letter announcing that schools will close on Thursday. “As of Thursday, November 19, all school buildings will be closed and all remote learning for all students will continue until further notice,” the letter said. “You will shortly hear from your school principal about the next steps for you and your student. Please note that this is a temporary closure and that school buildings will reopen as soon as it is safe.” New York City hit the 7-day average threshold of 3%.

The pandemic will not stop NORAD from tracking down Santa Claus
Children of the world can just rest. The global pandemic won’t stop them from tracking Santa’s progress as he delivers gifts around the globe on Christmas Eve. The North American Aerospace Defense Command has announced that NORAD will be chasing Santa on December 24th, just as it has done for 65 years. But there will be some changes: not every child will be able to reach a volunteer in the NORAD call center to check Santa’s whereabouts, as in previous years.

Delta Air Lines continues to block the middle seats until March 2021
Delta Air Lines announced Wednesday that the center seats on their flights will remain empty through March, an extension of the social distancing policy introduced at the start of the pandemic. Delta claims it is the only U.S. airline that continues to block center seats on its flights. The move comes as other airlines end similar policies and prepare for a possible influx of air travelers during their busy vacation.

The demand for tests increases before Thanksgiving
Hospitals across the country are overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients as many people in test centers also want to be tested before the holidays. Dr. Anthony Fauci says while it’s important to be tested, he urges Americans to skip Thanksgiving this year to stop the spread. More than 2 million Americans tested positive this month, making November the worst month of the pandemic yet. More and more states are imposing restrictions. Los Angeles introduced a 10 p.m. curfew, while Montana and Iowa now have mask mandates. It’s a move that at least a dozen states are resisting.

US hospitals lack beds or equipment to treat COVID-19 patients
Currently, more Americans are being hospitalized with COVID-19 than ever before. With more than 73,000 people being hospitalized across the country for the virus, health professionals say they are on the verge of action and have run out of beds or equipment to handle the overwhelming influx of patients.

The US has its highest daily COVID-19 count in 6 months
At least 1,707 new COVID-19 deaths were reported Tuesday, according to the Johns Hopkins University. This is the highest daily death toll since May 14th.

Europe has half of the world’s 4 million new COVID cases but sees hope
Europe accounted for nearly half of the world’s 4 million new coronavirus cases last week, but saw infections decrease by nearly 10% compared to the previous week, partly due to tough government lockdown measures that sparked some dissatisfaction the World Health Organization reported on Wednesday.

Pfizer publishes new results on the effectiveness of COVID-19
Pfizer is taking the next step forward with its vaccine as it is filing for FDA emergency clearance. The final results of their Phase 3 analysis showed the Pfizer vaccine to be 95% effective. The pharmaceutical company has completed its safety review of the highly anticipated COVID-19 vaccine. Last week Pfizer announced that its vaccine appears to be more than 90% effective. The FDA advisory panel is expected to meet for three days next month and could approve the vaccine as early as December 10th.

The FDA approves the first rapid COVID test at home
The FDA has granted emergency approval for the first rapid home test for COVID-19. The Lucira COVID-19 All-In-One Test Kit is approved for use at home or at the point of treatment in a doctor’s office, but only with a doctor’s prescription. According to the FDA, the molecular test “works by swirling the self-collected sample swab in a vial, which is then placed in the test unit. Within 30 minutes or less, results can be read directly from the test unit’s indicator light, which indicates whether a Person is positive or negative for the SARS-CoV-2 virus. “

Know your NYC COVID Zone
You can find your COVID zone at NYC.gov/covidzone.

MORE CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 COVERAGE

CDC has updated the Thanksgiving Policy
Information about travelers outside of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut
New CDC guidelines for masks
New York City Positivity Tracker
How the coronavirus changed the New York area
Do you have coronavirus symptoms?

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