It is recommended to hide enclosed spaces again in Northeastern provinces

Although rates of COVID-19 infection and hospitalizations have been steadily rising across the United States, nowhere have the increases been more significant than in the Northeast.

Across the New England, New York and New Jersey areas, infection rates are approaching three-month highs. Hospitals related to COVID-19 are also on the rise – daily income levels have more than doubled in the past month.

Overnight, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated community risk levels, and pushed many counties across the Northeast, particularly in New York and Massachusetts, to a “high” alert level. A “high” societal level indicates a “high potential for healthcare system stress” and a “high level of severe illness,” and thus, the CDC recommends that people wear a mask in enclosed public spaces, including schools.

“If we were still using the original CDC COVID-19 risk classification, the Northeast would be bright red, indicating uncontrolled community spread. This part of the country has some of the highest vaccination and booster rates, yet infections are still increasing,” Dr. . Maureen Miller, professor of epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, told ABC News.

Although Manhattan and the rest of New York City is still considered an “intermediate” risk, transmission rates have increased by about 33% in the past 10 days. Much of upstate New York is now painted orange for “high” risk.

Suffolk County, home to the city of Boston, as well as six other surrounding counties in Massachusetts are now also considered “high” risk communities. Across the Greater Boston area, sewage levels are at their highest since early February, with residents aged 20 to 29 reporting the highest number of infections.

The data shows that in many areas of Vermont and Maine, community levels have also reached the high or medium risk threshold. Across the region, six northeastern states — Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey — have the most new cases, per capita, over the past week, of all 50 states.

“I think the wave we’re seeing is a real one, and probably a lot bigger than we appreciate. Since most cases of COVID-19 have not been reported – because people get tested at home or don’t get tested at all – I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that the number of daily infections now is higher than during Delta, and perhaps even the winter of 2020-21, David Doody, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told ABC News.

Health experts say the increases are driven by a combination of factors, including easing of masking requirements and other COVID-19 restrictions, as well as highly contagious omicron variants, most notably BA.1.12.1. The subvariable is expected to account for about 36.5% of cases nationwide and 62% of infections in the New York and New Jersey area. BA.1.12.1 is estimated to be 30%-80% more transmissible than the original omicron strain.

“It has become clear that the latest omicron BA.2 and its descendant BA2.12.1 can evade immunity developed as a result of an original infection from omicron. Vaccination is still highly recommended for those who have been infected – even with omicron – to prevent the severe consequences it suffers from. Primarily unvaccinated.” “The big change in the way this wave is affected is human behavior. There is now a huge body of evidence proving that mask-wearing helps slow the spread of COVID-19… I wear a mask every time I walk into an indoor public space, from the supermarket to The plane. Life can go on, but you have to be smart about it.”

Amid looming questions about the potential return of mask and vaccines, New York City Mayor Adams said Friday that officials are closely monitoring the increases, stressing that the city will be ready to “turn on and turn” if a reinstatement of mitigation measures is deemed necessary.

“We can’t control what this virus does,” Adams said Friday during a press conference in front of the camera. “But we can control our response as we do it.” “Yes, we are worried [about the numbers]. Yes we are. But prepare, do not panic, prepare, do not panic. We are ready as the city and we will not panic.”

When asked if the city would consider reauthorizing the mask for K-12 schools and establishing vaccination requirements, Adams replied that the city “isn’t there yet.”

“We will pivot and shift like COVID pivots and shifts. Every morning we meet, and depending on the outcome of our meetings, we’ll announce where we’re going, if it stays at that level, repeat Adams repeat what Adams said, we may do shift and shift and still do mandates, see An increase in hospitalizations and deaths, and that’s concerning, and we might turn in. “No matter what happens, we’ll make a decision after we have our morning meetings.”

Adams praised the city’s high vaccination and booster rates, as well as access to home testing, which he said helps prevent a significant increase in hospitalizations and deaths.

Earlier this week, New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan told CNBC that if infections and hospitalizations continue to rise, then surely the requirements for masking and vaccination could return.

“Obviously if we move into a high-risk, high-alert environment, we will seriously consider bringing back those mandates,” Vasan said on Tuesday.

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