NYC makes vaccination mandatory for city health and hospital workers as Delta fuels spike in cases – NBC New York

What there is to know

  • All workers in healthcare facilities and hospitals run by New York will need to be vaccinated or have weekly COVID tests starting in August
  • City Health + Hospitals officials said only 58% of staff in their facilities were vaccinated, and said the new measure would protect unvaccinated patients and staff from the contagious delta variant.
  • Despite rising COVID rates, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has said he is not reinstating an indoor mask warrant; hospitalizations and deaths remain low and he says vaccination is the answer

New York City will impose COVID vaccinations or weekly testing for all workers at health facilities and city-run hospitals as the highly contagious delta variant fuels an alarming increase in daily cases, Mayor Bill of Blasio.

City Health + Hospitals officials say only 58% of staff in their facilities are vaccinated and the new requirement will protect unimmunized patients and staff from the ongoing delta surge, which is once again raising concerns across government agencies. United States.

In New York City, the moving average of cases rose almost 66% last week from the previous four-week average – and is rising daily.

De Blasio told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Wednesday that it was time to take a new approach.

“We are monitoring the Delta variant and the impact it has, and it’s time for a change. It’s time for a new approach. I’m proud of the fact that New York City 9.7 million vaccines have been administered. . It’s about 58% of our population that has received at least one dose. It’s really good, “said de Blasio.” And there are still people, 10 to 20,000 every day who come and get vaccinated. . So, the vaccination efforts went on deeply, but the difference is the Delta variant. It’s virulent. It’s strong. It has an impact. So, it’s time to do something different. “

“The people who work in our public hospitals and clinics have to be safe, the people they serve have to be safe. So we say, get vaccinated or get tested once a week. right choice, ”he added. adds the mayor. “A lot of people who have been, yes, hesitant, but still ready, and now that will be that time, or after being tested for a while, they might say, ‘You know what? It might just be easier to get the shot. ‘”

More details are expected to be released by the mayor’s office later Wednesday, but a spokesperson said the new term would begin in August.

At that point, all staff at the city’s 11 public hospitals – such as Harlem Hospital, Bellevue Hospital, and Elmhurst Hospital – must either provide a single proof that they have been vaccinated or submit. to a mandatory weekly COVID test to make sure it is negative before reporting work. The policy will also apply to workers who see patients in health service clinics.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday he does not plan to reinstate a city-wide mask warrant even as COVID-19 cases increase. NBC New York’s Adam Harding reports.

De Blasio has repeatedly stated that he will not consider reinstating an indoor mask mandate for fully vaccinated people, even though other major cities like Los Angeles are doing so in a bid to curb the rapid spread of the delta variant, which ravages under-vaccinated neighborhoods and sending case averages to multi-month highs.

For more than a month in a row, New York has reported a sustained decline in new COVID infections as well as fewer hospitalizations and deaths, but lately the number of new daily cases has surpassed 1,000, a significant increase from to the roughly 300 to 400 new cases a day that Governor Andrew Cuomo reported just a month ago.

Hospitalization and death rates remain low, indicating, officials said, the power of vaccination to counteract more severe outcomes, even as the number of daily cases increases.

De Blasio says vaccinations, not renewed mask warrants, are the answer to the delta.

“A mask does not stop the progression of the variant,” the mayor said this week. “The vaccination does it. We’re going to go where the real impact is, at the end of the day.”

To date, 65.1% of adults in New York City are fully immunized, while 71% have received at least one dose. Statewide, those numbers are 67.5% and 74%, respectively, although vaccination rates decline dramatically with age.

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“We continue to be comfortable where we are,” said Murphy. “We’re looking at this like a hawk. I don’t want to go back, but if we think it’s the right thing to do, we’ll do what public health experts suggest.”

State Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli said the rate of positive test results had recently increased for children up to 13 years old, and more sharply in children 4 and under. She added that overall cases, the hospitalization rate and the percentage of intensive care patients have remained low.

Murphy and Persichilli provided an update on the number of fully vaccinated people in the state who have tested positive for COVID-19, known as “breakthrough” infections. As of June 28, they have found around 3,500 positive cases, 84 requiring hospitalization and 31 deaths among the state’s 4.4 million vaccinated people.

In New York City, a spokesperson for the state Department of Health told NBC New York that they were “aware of 8,718 groundbreaking cases of COVID-19, 0.15% of people fully vaccinated. We continue. to investigate the number of fully vaccinated people who may have been hospitalized or died. “

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