ALBANY — There were just six new positive cases of COVID-19 reported from Wednesday to Thursday bringing the total to 2,328 since the pandemic began taking over the world in March.
There are 557 people under mandatory quarantine with 42 active cases in Albany County. Since mid-March, there have been 2,286 county residents who tested positive for the virus and recovered.
Of the new cases, one is a health care worker, four came into close contact with a positive case and the county Health Department is still tracking the origins of one case.
The county saw the infection rate plummet in June, then experienced a slight spike last month and now numbers are on the way down again. The reason, said Dr. Elizabeth Whalen, is that people are following the established protocols.
“The future is in your hands. I respectfully will argue that wearing masks is appropriate. It is one of the cornerstones of the strategy going forward of keeping the infection rate low,” she said. “It will help you, it will help your family until such time we get a safe and widely available vaccine for COVID this is one of the strategies we need to utilize on a daily basis. Wearing masks, social distancing, avoiding large scale gatherings and frequent attention to hand hygiene. What happens next is entirely dependent on your behavior.”
Statewide the infection rate is about .9 percent. In the eight-county Capital District it is .8 percent. The highest rate of infection on Thursday was the Mohawk Valley at 1.5 percent.
Most segments of the economy are open but gyms, casinos, bowling allies and movie theaters remain closed. Athletic events, like the Saratoga Race Track, is open but without fans.
“I commend the governor for keeping the infection rate down. I believe we are the lowest in the country but there has to come a time when we need to re-open things at a slow pace,” said Albany County Executive Dan McCoy. “I don’t know what to say to gym owners anymore. At some point in time we have to give it a try and if it doesn’t work shut it down. But we have to give it a try. Something is going right based on our infection rate and our hospitalization rate so it may be time to open the faucet a little more and let gyms open.”