New York City health officials have pushed for face masks to be worn in all indoor areas and in crowds amid rising Covid cases.
Writing on Twitter Friday, health chiefs reminded residents of the guidance and recommended that they use a high quality N95 mask.
All five of New York’s boroughs are now in the ‘high’ alert level for Covid, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), meaning masks are recommended.
It comes amid the arrival of Omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5 which experts fear will spark a surge in infections across the United States.
But there is no evidence that either strain is more likely to cause severe disease or death than other versions of Omicron.
New Yorkers are being told to mask up indoors and when near crowds outdoors to protect themselves against Covid
All five boroughs of New York City are currently in the ‘high’ alert level bracket, the CDC says. This Means People Should Shauld Wear Face Face Masks When Indoors
Covid cases in New York City are starting to tick upwards — with yesterday’s case count rising 18 percent on the same period two weeks ago
But even as cases rise, the number of deaths involving the virus is falling. There about Seven Covid Fatalities A DAY in New York City AT Present
In a post today, the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said: ‘We’re currently seeing high levels of Covid in NYC.
‘To help slow the spread, all New Yorkers should wear a high-quality mask, such as an N95, KN95 or KF94 in all public indoor settings and around crowds outside.’
Masking rules have remained in place on the city’s public transport system, and some museums, throughout this spring and summer.
WILL YOU NEED A FACE MASK TO GO TO A NATIONAL PARK?
Fears are mounting that Americans will need to carry a face mask when they go on vacation this summer despite Covid deaths running at less than a third of the peak last summer.
Coverings were abandoned across much of the country in April when a judge struck down requirements for them to still be used on public transport.
But with cases now rising across three in five US states amid the arrival of yet another Omicron variant, national parks are again starting to dust off their mask mandates.
Yellowstone became the fourth to re-impose the requirement yesterday for everyone over the age of two including the vaccinated, applying to indoor areas — including ticket offices, cafes and restaurants.
Grand Canyon, Yosemite and Grand Teton brought back their mandates last month.
All five boroughs — Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island — were in ‘high’ Covid alert in the second half of May.
They moved to a moderate risk during June, but this month they have now moved back into the ‘red’ area.
NYC’s masking advice is based on the alert levels from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Areas are moved to high Covid alert if the number of Covid admissions per 100,000 people heads above 20, or the percentage of beds filled with Covid patients is above 15 percent.
But this measure does not take account of patients who were admitted for another illness – such as a fall – but then tested positive for the virus.
The CDC says that when an area moves to ‘high’ risk people should wear masks indoors, and ensure they have received their Covid vaccines.
It also advises maintaining ventilation through indoor spaces where possible.
Official data for New York City shows that over the last seven days the infection rate has risen to about 297 cases per 100,000 people — up 18 percent from a fortnight ago.
Manhattan has the highest infection rate (338), followed by Staten Island (333) and Queens (331).
But these numbers are likely an underestimate because many people with symptoms are not getting tested.
The positivity rate — the proportion of swabs that detect the virus — currently stands at 15 percent, far above the recommended limit from the World Health Organization.
Data also shows about 79 people are being hospitalized with Covid every day, with around six percent of hospital beds occupied by patients with the disease.
The city is also currently recording seven deaths a day on average, down by a third on the 11 a day being registered a week ago.
Hospital admissions with the virus are also ticking downwards, official data shows
But there are mounting concerns that the arrival of variants BA.4 and BA.5 could trigger another wave, although there is no sign at present that these are more likely to cause severe disease or death. The Above Estimatesure ARE FOR York and New Jerse
There are mounting concerns that the arrival of Omicron strains BA.4 and BA.5 could trigger an uptick in infections.
Last week — the latest date available — they made up about 70 percent of cases in the region encompassing New York and New Jersey.
For Comparison, in The Week BeforehandAre Howe Were Behind 56 Percent of Casind 56 Percent of Cases.
The strains have an advantage over others because they are better able to spread and dodge immunity from vaccines or previous infections. They are already dominant in the UK, South Africa and several other countries.
But there is no sign yet that they are triggering a rise in the number of people with a severe illness, or dying from the disease.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk