NYS COVID-19 test positivity rates trend up, hospitalizations top 4,000: governor

By Xia Lin

NEW YORK, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- Of the 203,440 COVID-19 tests reported on Wednesday in New York State, 9,855 were positive, or 4.84 percent of the total, up from 4.63 percent one day earlier, tweeted Governor Andrew Cuomo on Thursday.

The rate topped 4 percent on Nov. 28 for the first time since May and has remained above the level ever since.

The COVID-19 test positivity rate in the focus areas under the state's micro-cluster strategy, where the outbreaks are targeted for their severity and potential of spread, was 5.91 percent on Wednesday, up from 5.88 percent on Tuesday, said Cuomo.

The statewide positivity rate excluding these focus areas was 4.49 percent on Wednesday, up from 4.21 percent one day earlier, said the governor.

The total hospitalizations were 4,063 on Wednesday, up from 3,924 on Tuesday, added Cuomo, who had warned that the state's COVID-19 hospitalizations could reach 6,000 in weeks based on the current trends.

"The federal government must pass a COVID stimulus bill. NOW. A proposal is on the table that will help struggling Americans and provide some state aid. Something is better than nothing. I urge Congress to pass it," said the governor in another tweet.

As of Thursday afternoon, the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University reported 34,726 coronavirus deaths in New York State, the worst in the country.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday signaled willingness to embrace a trimmed-down COVID-19 relief bill, urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to join negotiations.

The Democrats-controlled House of Representatives passed a 2.2-trillion-dollar relief bill in early October, but Senate Republicans have recently been pushing for a 500-billion-dollar package. On Tuesday, McConnell quickly rejected the 908-billion-dollar bipartisan plan after its release.

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