The good news is New York’s numbers continue to show progress as the holiday surge recedes. Our positivity rate has been steadily declining, and that success is a reflection of New Yorkers’ commitment to defeating this beast of a virus. We know the weapon to win the war is the vaccine and more and more shots are getting into arms every day, but the federal supply is still not enough. This has been a long road, but I commend New Yorkers for their determination through it all. As we enter Super Bowl weekend, we cannot get cocky with COVID—we must remain vigilant: Be smart, wear a mask, socially distance and stay New York Tough.
Video of the Day: How mRNA COVID Vaccines Work. Click here to watch.
Here’s what else you need to know tonight:
1. COVID hospitalizations dropped to 7,967. Of the 169,186 tests reported yesterday, 7,414, or 4.38 percent, were positive. This is the lowest daily statewide positivity rate since November 28. The 7-day average positivity rate in all NYS regions is below 6 percent. There were 1,506 patients in the ICU yesterday, down 16 from the previous day. Of them, 986 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 135 New Yorkers to the virus.
2. As of 11am this morning, 95 percent of first doses received by the State have been administered. This represents 1,475,122 first doses administered of the 1,554,450 first dose allocations received from the federal government. So far, 369,186 second doses have been administered out of 725,050 second doses received. See data by region on the State’s Vaccine Tracker.
3. More than 27 million Americans have received a first dose of the COVID vaccine. In total, over six million Americans nationally have been fully vaccinated, the New York Times reported.
4. You’ve heard of mRNA vaccines—but do you know how they work?Both the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are mRNA vaccines. New York State released a video explaining how mRNA vaccines work to safely protect individuals from COVID-19. Three key things to know: They do not affect your own genetic material or DNA in any way; they do not contain the actual COVID-19 virus; and they cannot give you COVID. Watch the video.
5. New York State is encouraging eligible New Yorkers to train to become vaccinators. If you are a licensed practical nurse, a dentist, an EMT, a medical or nursing student with at least a year of clinical experience, and more — then you may be eligible to take training to become a vaccinator and help New York administer COVID vaccines over the coming months. See how you can get involved here.
Tonight’s “Deep Breath Moment”: A 20-year-old Cornell student who made $30,000 from GameStop stock during the frenzy of trading last month is using some of his earnings to donate new gaming consoles to the Children’s Minnesota hospital. The student, Hunter Kahn, wrote in an Instagram post that he felt it was “important that myself and others pay forward our good fortune.” The Nintendo Switch consoles he bought for the hospital are already being used by young patients at the hospital.
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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo