NEW YORK (WKBW) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul announced that three additional cases of the COVID-19 Omicron variant have been identified in New York State, bringing the total to eight.
"We knew the Omicron variant was coming and we expect to see more cases. But let me be clear: We are not defenseless," Governor Hochul said. "We have the tools to help prevent the spread of this deadly virus: Get your vaccine, get your booster, and wear your mask. Let's use these tools to protect ourselves and our loved ones as we approach the holidays."
Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said, "The Omicron variant is here, and as anticipated we are seeing the beginning of community spread. We continue to work closely with our partners at the national, state, and local levels. At this time, we do not know how quickly Omicron will spread or how severe the symptoms of Omicron will be. What we are seeing is that the rise of cases across New York State continues to be traced to the Delta variant. We encourage all New Yorkers to use the best preventative tools we have: get vaccinated, get boosted and wear a mask."
The three additional cases were identified at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City.
Western New York had the highest COVID-19 infection rate in the state as of Thursday at 11.32 percent.