New York State Department of Health Reports Covid-19 Uptick, Encourages New Yorkers to Exercise Caution and Seek Treatment Options If Necessary

Hospital Admissions are Increasing in the State

Department Urges Those Who are Symptomatic to Get Tested and Seek Treatment

ALBANY, N.Y. (August 2, 2023) – The New York State Department of Health is reporting an increase in COVID-19 hospital admissions, although numbers are still low compared to the height of the pandemic.

The latest data, from August 2, shows hospital admissions increased 22% compared with the previous week and are now at 0.6 per 100,000 residents on average, which translates to more than 100 admissions per day. Reported cases are also 55% higher than the previous week, for an average of 824 reported cases per day across the state. However, it's important to note that most cases are not reported, so hospitalizations are a more reliable indicator. There are currently no concerns with hospital bed capacity.

"As we once again see an increase in cases of COVID-19 in the State, I urge all New Yorkers to remember COVID is a treatable disease," State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said. "COVID tests are easy to use as well as highly accurate. If you test positive, speak with a health care provider about treatment, which can prevent hospitalization and death."

As New Yorkers travel and gather for picnics, reunions, a day at the beach, and other summer fun, it's important to be mindful of COVID's ongoing presence, and those in high-risk groups should consider taking precautions to prevent serious illness from the virus.

Those who think they may be ill with COVID-19 should get tested. Symptoms of possible infection include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

At-home tests are available at local pharmacies. If a test is positive, it's important to begin treatment as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms to ensure the utmost effectiveness. COVID-19 medications are widely available by prescription through doctors, pharmacies, and health care clinics. Antivirals such as Paxlovid are most effective when started within five days of the onset of symptoms. Individuals who do not have a regular health care provider can find locations for treatment here.

Those who test positive should also avoid contact with others, including staying home from work, school, and social activities.

The key to preventing serious illness and spread of COVID-19 this summer and into the fall is to take precautions:

  • Get vaccinated and boosted when eligible. Learn more here.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating.
  • Avoid touching the eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and discard it in a closed container.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects.
  • And consider wearing a mask to reduce your chance of exposure.

Individuals who have not yet been vaccinated or are behind on booster doses can find COVID-19 vaccine sites here.