State Watch

New York City urges adults over 65 to stay at home amid surge in COVID-19 cases

New York City's Health Department recommended in a Tuesday advisory that residents 65 and over avoid public spaces and gatherings and limit nonessential activities amid the ongoing coronavirus surge.

"To protect yourself, your household members and your communities against the spread of COVID-19, you are hereby advised to limit activities outside your home, except leaving home to travel to work or school, or for essential purposes including medical care, grocery shopping or pharmacy necessities," the department said.

"I know that some people face a much greater risk for more serious illness from COVID-19," City Health Commissioner David Chokshi said in a statement. "This includes people who are older, who have a underlying health conditions. That's why today I'm issuing a Commissioners Notice that warns at-risk New Yorkers about the growth of COVID and urges appropriate precautions."

The advisory comes in the midst of what the city called a "rapid increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations," necessitating "additional actions."

The city was an early epicenter of the virus in the U.S., but rates flattened over the summer and into the fall. In recent weeks, cases both in New York and nationwide have begun to climb again.

Test results from after Thanksgiving weekend showed a spike in the city's daily positivity rate, which was at 5.72 percent as of Tuesday. City officials have said New York hospitals are not yet overwhelmed, with intensive care units about two-thirds full.

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