Red flags suggest possible COVID-19 resurgence in NYC, doctor says

Monday, July 31, 2023
Red flags suggest possible COVID-19 resurgence, doctor says
COVID-19 cases in New York City are on a slight increase and Dr. Horovitz from Lenox Hospital says coronavirus may be on a comeback. N.J. Burkett has the story.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Medical experts are speaking out about the possibility of a COVID-19 resurgence across New York City and what we can do to keep it at bay.

The CDC no longer tracks COVID cases, but they do track those who test positive for the virus during hospital visits -- and that number is up.

"I'm not seeing any of these guys with masks and you know, they're not hacking up so I feel pretty safe," said Rhonette Clay, a Manhattan resident.

Clay says she's not worried and, apparently, she's not alone.

The fact is, there are very few people wearing masks either on the streets or in the transit system. However, there are indications that COVID-19 is slowly making a comeback.

"I would say at the latter part of the winter and early spring, I barely saw a case. And now I'm seeing two cases a week," said Dr. Len Horovitz, a pulmonologist at Lenox Hill Hospital

In June, New York City saw an average of 277 cases of COVID-19 every day.

For July, that's up more than 5% already, which is nothing close to the human catastrophe of 2020, when hundreds were dying every day in New York and the city was practically locked down.

"We can expect that as the cases track up over the summer, as the weather cools, when people come indoors, we will see a rise in cases, a surge of cases and maybe hospitalizations," Dr. Horovitz said.

Nine out of 10 New Yorkers have had at least one dose of the vaccine, but just 16% have had the updated vaccine, known as the bivalent, which was first made widely available last fall.

Those who haven't had it are urged to get it.

Vaccines are still widely available and an additional bivalent dose is recommended for those 65 and older and for people with chronic illnesses or are immunocompromised.

The virus continues to mutate, and the CDC says updated vaccines will be offered to all Americans in the coming months.

Testing is still available and recommended for anyone who may have been exposed to someone who's contracted COVID-19.

"People still have COVID, I came into contact with someone that has COVID, so it's still a thing," said a woman being tested for the virus.

The increases in ER visits and positive test results are small but they are no longer declining. This is not a reason to be alarmed, but to be cautious, along with a reminder that COVID-19 is still a fact of life in New York.

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