Uptick in COVID-19 cases sparks concern about return of restrictions

The Island's seven-day positivity rate is at 1.23% and the single-day rate is now nearly 1.6%.

News 12 Staff

Jul 16, 2021, 7:38 PM

Updated 1,001 days ago

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Long Island's seven-day positivity rate is on the rise, causing some concern that COVID-19 restrictions could be reinstated.
The Island's seven-day positivity rate is at 1.23% and the single-day rate is now nearly 1.6%. Also, 174 more cases have been reported Islandwide. That's the highest number of new cases in a single day in nearly two months.
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John Zartler, of Smithtown, says with the rise in cases he is keeping his mask on even though he's fully vaccinated.
"I'm not the healthiest person in the world. I wish I was," says Zartler. "So, I will still wear a mask when I come inside of stores. Outside I try not to and still try to social distance and keep as safe as I can."
Some parts of the country are reinstating mask mandates indoors even for fully vaccinated people. Officials from Nassau and Suffolk tell News 12 they have no plans to require masks indoors for vaccinated people.
"There's been a slight uptick in cases, that's not unexpected," says Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. "To me it's a reminder that if you haven't been vaccinated yet and you're eligible, seriously consider it.
Curran says the county has the highest percentage of people vaccinated among large counties in the state. According to the county, 96% of senior citizens have receieved at least one vaccine dose compared to 86% statewide and 89% nationwide.
"Nassau County has one of the highest rates of vaccination across demographic groups, including among younger people who have relatively lower rates of vaccination compared to other age groups," says Curran. "Sixty-two percent of COVID-19 cases last week were in people 30 years old and younger. This virus is a real risk for the unvaccinated, and getting your shot is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from getting sick or dying from COVID."
Doctors say with the delta variant here in the area it's a reminder that the pandemic is not over.
"I think everyone is changing with this new variant," says Dr. Mangala Narasimhan, of Northwell Health. "I think it's making everybody nervous. I do think if you are vaccinated, we have not seen severe cases, but you can still get COVID. You can also give it to other people, and you can make people in your home sick. I think the data is changing with this COVID variant. I think we all have to be on our guard. I'm not saying we need to go back to masking, but I think you need to take a look at your own household and see what the risk is that you are living with."


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