April 12, 2021
Albany, NY

Audio & Rush Transcript: Governor Cuomo Updates New Yorkers on State's Progress During COVID-19 Pandemic

Audio & Rush Transcript: Governor Cuomo Updates New Yorkers on State's Progress During COVID-19 Pandemic

4,118 Patient Hospitalizations Statewide

860 Patients in the ICU - Lowest Since December 5; 571 Intubated

Statewide Positivity Rate is 3.75%

7-Day Positivity for NYC is 3.5% - Lowest Since December 1

7-Day Positivity Statewide is 3.2% - Lowest in a Month

58 COVID-19 Deaths in New York State Yesterday

Governor Cuomo: "The graduation ceremonies we think are important and we hope schools have graduation ceremonies - we just want them safe and we want them smart. Effective May 1 we are going to have guidance on graduation ceremonies. It is dependent on the size of the location. ... For all events, face masks, social distancing, health screening, contact tracing information are required."

Cuomo: "This morning we talked about getting college students vaccinated. This is more of a challenge than you might think. ... Even if they believe in what I call the superhero theory that they can't get hurt by COVID, they can transmit COVID. And they can transmit COVID to someone who can get hurt. What we're trying to do is get the student vaccinated in the schools before the schools are out."

Earlier today, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo updated New Yorkers on the state's progress during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

AUDIO of today's remarks is available here.

A rush transcript of the Governor's remarks is available below:

This is Governor Cuomo. We have Melissa DeRosa, Beth Garvey, Kelly Cummings, Robert Mujica, Howard Zucker.

Let me give you a quick number COVID update and some quick information. Positivity today, 3.75. 58 New Yorkers passed away from COVID yesterday, 4,118 New Yorkers hospitalized. That is the lowest number since [December], so that's good news because that's pretty holiday surge, even though holiday surge is a bit of an oxymoron. 860 patients in ICU, down 17. That's the lowest number since early December. 571 were intubated.

Positivity by region, I keep saying this but some provocative academic will do this study someday - Western New York, back on top, 4.79. Western New York as everybody remembers was very high, public information campaign, and then more publicity about consequences, people dying, more people in hospitals, people know someone who gets sick, the message came home, the compliance goes up, then positivity number goes down. We now have COVID fatigue and some places - some places - the number goes up. COVID fatigue is different in different places. It is the behavior. I was talking to Dr. Zucker about this. It is human behavior. Human behavior.

Western New York, 4.79; Long Island, 3.9; Mid-Hudson, 3.8; New York City, 3.5; Finger Lakes, 3.3; Capital Region, 2.2; North Country, 1.8; Mohawk, 1.7; Central New York, 1.45; Southern Tier, 0.7. Statewide, 3.2. The positivity by borough in New York City, take a guess, Staten Island 4.2 - Rob's home borough. Queens, my home borough, 3.7. Brooklyn, 3.5. Bronx, 3.3. Bronx is lower than it has been. Staten Island was high, went down, is number one again. And Manhattan, 2.14, which has been consistent. New York City seven-day positivity, 3.5, lowest since early December also.

We were in Long Island today. New York State has done 12 million shots in arms. One in four New Yorkers has been fully vaccinated which is great. 38 percent of New Yorkers have gotten at least one dose. We're working on more supply. Supply is the limiting factor right now. But our distribution network is up and robust. Our distribution network is comprised of two types of distribution. One is a mass vaccination site, which is the most efficient, effective way of getting shots in arms. Javits Center is one of the highest performing and best vaccination sites in the country. Then we also have pop-up, community-based, to reach populations that are harder to reach and to make sure we're doing everything we can to have equitable distribution.

This morning we talked about getting college students vaccinated. This is more of a challenge than you might think. College students have been told early on that this doesn't affect young people as seriously. There's a certain amount, they talk vaccine hesitancy, I think with young people it's more complacency. It's not their problem, not their issue. Ironically, we're seeing positivity [share] go up among young people 18 to 24. Even if they believe in what I call the superhero theory that they can't get hurt by COVID, they can transmit COVID. And they can transmit COVID to someone who can get hurt.

What we're trying to do is get the student vaccinated in the schools before the schools are out. We're using SUNY. They have a medical staff, they can administer in the college on the campus. Same with CUNY, Rob is on the CUNY board, they can administer at the school itself. We're asking private colleges to participate. We'll provide them with vaccines and they can administer, but our hope is to get as many students vaccinated as we can before they take off for the summer to places unknown. As you know, all New Yorkers are eligible so there are no excuses, and the phone number is 1-833-NYS-4VAX.

Graduation ceremonies, I'll give you the outlines. If you have any follow-up questions, because this gets a little technical. This has been a long year, people are graduating, people like to enjoy graduations. My daughter graduated last year. She didn't have a graduation. She missed it very much and so did I. The graduation ceremonies we think are important and we hope schools have graduation ceremonies, we just want them safe and we want them smart. Effective May 1 we are going to have guidance on graduation ceremonies. It is dependent on the size of the location. For outdoor events, large-scale ceremonies of 500 people at outdoor venues, they are limited to 20 percent of the venue capacity with proof of a recent negative test or vaccination required. For medium-scale ceremonies, which we call 201 to 500, at outdoor, ceremonies at 33 percent of venue, negative test or vaccination. For small-scale outdoor ceremonies of up to 200 people, ceremonies at 50 percent of venue capacity, proof of negative test or vaccination is optional, that's up to 200.

Indoor events, large ceremonies of over 150 people, 10 percent venue, proof of test. Medium-scale ceremonies of 100 to 150 people, ceremonies at 33 percent of venue capacity with proof of recent test or vaccination. Small-scale indoor ceremonies of up to 100 people, 50 percent of venue, proof of recent test or vaccination is optional. For large events, colleges and schools will need to notify their local health department. For all events, face masks, social distancing, health screening, contact tracing information are required. All that being said, we continue to encourage virtual, drive-in or individual ceremonies. They are still the safest option for students and families. But, we deserve a break and students deserve their day for graduation and families deserve a little good news. It's been a long, long year.

Contact the Governor’s Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474 - 8418
New York City: (212) 681 - 4640