Coronavirus News: COVID-19 patients on rise at 3 hospitals in Brooklyn, Queens

COVID-19 News and Information
NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- New data shows that New York City is starting to see an uptick in the number of COVID-19 patients in two hospitals in Brooklyn and at least one in Queens, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said.

The increase corresponds with the continued growth of cases at an alarming rate in eight neighborhoods.

The Department of Health says they are outpacing the citywide average by 3.3 times over the past 14 days.

These areas account for over 23%ofnewcases citywide over the past two weeks despite representing just under 7% of the city's overall population.

Gravesend/Homecrest (6.75%)
Midwood (5.34%)
Kew Gardens (3.82%)
Edgemere/Far Rockaway (3.9%)
Borough Park (4.63%)
Bensonhurst/Mapleton (4.41%)
Gerritsen Beach/Homecrest/Sheepshead Bay (3.91%)
Flatlands/Midwood (3.85%)

In addition to these 8 ZIP codes, the City has identified 4 additional ZIP codes that are showing increased growth of cases and test positivity between 2% and 3%, which are:

Rego Park (2.34%)
Kew Gardens Hills/Pomonok (2.71%)
Kensington/Windsor Terrace (2.45%)
Brighton Beach/Manhattan Beach/Sheepshead Bay (2.74%)

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Three out of the four areas above have also increased in the percent of positive tests since the day before, according to preliminary data.

Williamsburg remains an area where the City is observing a faster increase in cases compared to other parts of the city, even though the test positivity rate is below 3% (1.78%).

Health officials continue to monitor emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and intensive care unit admissions.

On Saturday, The New York City Health Department issued a Commissioner's Order to eight non-public schools in the above areas.

Any school in these areas found to be out of compliance will be issued a violation and face possible closure.

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city is targeting six neighborhoods that have seen recent upticks in coronavirus cases, with an emphasis on expanded testing and contact tracing.



The fine for violating a Commissioner's Order is $1,000.

"This may be the most precarious position with COVID-19 we have experienced in months, and we must immediately take action to protect our communities," said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave A. Chokshi. "Protecting against COVID-19 requires a group response. It is critical for us to follow public health guidance, most importantly the Core 4: Wear face coverings, keep physical distance, keep your hands clean, and stay home if you are sick."

The COVID-19 risk reduction measures for non-public schools include:

*All individuals on the school premises should remain at least 6 feet apart at all times, except in emergencies or when doing so would create a safety hazard;

*Face coverings are required in school buildings at all times, except for individuals who cannot wear a face-covering because of developmental, medical, or age reasons;

*Coordinating with the Health Department and the Test + Trace Corps to identify, isolate and prevent the spread of COVID-19; and
*Following established protocols for opening and closing schools if a student or staff is confirmed with COVID-19, and excluding students and staff who have symptoms of or are confirmed with COVID-19 or have been identified as a close contact to someone with COVID-19.


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New York City warns that activities could be shut down in several neighborhoods with COVID clusters.



The ZIP codes under the Commissioner's Order are:
11204 (Bensonhurst/Mapleton)
11223 (Gravesend/Homecrest)
11230 (Midwood)
11691 (Edgemere/Far Rockaway)
11415 (Kew Gardens)
11219 (Borough Park)
11229 (Gerritsen Beach/Homecrest/Sheepshead Bay)
11210 (Flatlands/Midwood)

The order went into effect Friday.

Inspectors will be visiting the non-public schools in the covered ZIP codes to check for compliance.

The Health Department said it will be sharing additional documents over the weekend and posting online to further help schools understand these requirements. Failure to comply could result in a violation subject to a $1,000 fine.

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Suddenly, the brutal death of George Floyd while in the custody of police officers in Minneapolis filled the streets of a nation with rage and sorrow. New York was no different. Protesters put the fear of the virus aside and took to the streets by the thousands. Abandoning the safety and comfort of social distance, to demand social change.




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