ALBANY COUNTY — County Executive Daniel McCoy announced today the total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Albany County is now at 41,330 to date, with 1,003 new positive cases identified since yesterday.
The County Executive was joined by St. Peter’s Health Partners Chief Medical Director of Acute Care Thea Dalfino, M.D. and Albany County Health Commissioner Dr. Elizabeth Whalen to discuss the latest surge of new COVID infections, the Omicron variant and what impact there may be on local hospitals in the coming weeks.
The report came just hours before many anticipated New Year’s Eve celebrations for the evening.
“I realize many people will be celebrating New Year’s tonight, and if you are, we are encouraging everyone to do so safely in smaller groups, ideally with vaccinated individuals,” McCoy said. “We are likely to see an even larger spike in COVID infections after the holiday, and we want to keep that under control to the extent possible.”
As of yesterday, 78.9 percent of all county residents have received at least the first dose of the vaccine, and 71.6 percent have been fully vaccinated. The first dose vaccination rate for the county’s 18-and-over population is now up to 87.9 percent.
“Moving forward, I hope people continue to wear masks, get vaccinated, get the booster and get tested as much as possible,” McCoy said.
The county’s seven-day average of new daily positive cases is now up to 404.8. The County said that the overall case count is expected to fluctuate as CommCare records are transferred.
Albany County’s most recent seven-day average of cases per 100,000 is up to 94.9 and the Capital Region’s average of cases per 100,000 is now up to 90.9.
McCoy also reported 15 new hospitalizations since yesterday, and 66 county residents are currently hospitalized with the Coronavirus. Seven of those hospital patients are in ICU’s, unchanged from yesterday. There are no new COVID deaths to report, and the death toll for Albany County still stands at 470 since the outbreak began.
“With 1,003 new COVID infections identified in the county since yesterday, it’s clear we’ve entered an alarming new phase of the pandemic,” McCoy said. “The last record for daily infections was 471 which we reported just two days ago, and these concerning numbers don’t reflect at-home tests for the most part and are likely much higher. It’s still unclear what kind of impact this unprecedented infection rate will have on our hospitals, but as Dr. Dalfino said, infections among hospital staff [are] creating a strain on an industry that is already short-staffed.”
Residents can receive free Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines (including booster shots) Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each week at the Albany County Department of Health, 175 Green Street.
Albany County continues to deliver vaccines to homebound residents, which includes seniors, disabled individuals, those lacking childcare and those with other accessibility issues. Anyone who would like to schedule a time for a vaccine appointment should call (518) 447-7198.
Residents who want a shot from a state-run facility should use the state’s website or call the state vaccine hotline at 1-833-697-4829. For general information on the vaccine, residents can also dial the United Way of the Greater Capital Region’s 2-1-1 hotline or the Albany County Department of Health at (518) 447-4580.