NYS turns focus to hospitalization rates to determine future shutdowns

Posted at 12:24 PM, Dec 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-07 12:28:15-05

NEW YORK (WKBW) — During a COVID-19 update Monday New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the state is turning its focus to hospitalization rates to determine future shutdowns.

The governor said if after the state's surge and flex plan is implemented a region's 7-day average hospitalization growth rate shows that within three weeks it will hit critical hospital capacity, or 90%, the state will enact a NY PAUSE shutdown in that region.

The surge and flex plan ends elective surgeries, increases the number of hospital beds, creates field hospitals and balances patients within hospitals.

If the NY PAUSE shutdown is enacted in a region it would become a Red Zone. The restrictions for a Red Zone according to the governor's office are:

  • Houses of worship operate at 25% capacity or 10 people maximum.
  • Mass gatherings are prohibited.
  • Only essential business can be open.
  • Restaurants can only offer takeout.
  • Schools are closed and shift to remote learning.

NYSDOH will issue an order Monday calling for all hospitals to increase bed capacity by 25%, according to Cuomo.

The state is also asking retired doctors and nurses who are able to return to service to do so. Officials say the state will renew their registrations without cost.

New guidance was announced in regards to indoor dining Monday. According to the governor, if after five days a region's hospitalization rate doesn't stabilize indoor dining will be closed or reduced if those steps have not already been taken.

You can watch the governor's full update below.