Today, Governor Cuomo released the results of the state’s second-phase COVID antibody test, which randomly surveyed 12,000 people between May 1 and June 13. When the survey commenced, 12.3% of New York residents tested positive, compared with 13.4% on Saturday. The new results are more telling, however, when it comes to disparities in New York City. Though overall there was only a 1.6% increase (19.9% to 21.6%), the Bronx increased by 5% and Brooklyn and Queens by 2.1%. There are also disparities when it comes to race, as the Black and Latino/Hispanic communities have seen increases of 3.4% and 5% respectively.
The coronavirus continues to spread in lower-income communities and communities of color in New York City, according to antibody test results released by the state on Wednesday. New York earlier this month partnered with Northwell Health and city churches to test residents of low-income neighborhoods, with 8,000 antibody tests conducted to date. According to preliminary data from those tests, 27 percent tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies, compared to the city’s overall antibody rate of 19.9 percent.
Photo by Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office on Flickr
The city will offer 140,000 free antibody tests to “everyday New Yorkers” in the coming weeks to help understand the spread of the coronavirus, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Thursday. In partnership with BioReference Laboratories, the city will open initial testing sites in five neighborhoods with the goal of 1,000 tests per site per day. An additional 140,000 tests will also be available for the city’s first responders and health care workers next week.
It was a question of friend or foe leading up to Governor Cuomo’s meeting at the White House yesterday, but it looks like the governor, who has been referred to as the “Trump whisperer,” came out of the chat with some concrete federal commitments when it comes to advancing coronavirus testing in the state. After the meeting, the governor announced a partnership with the federal government that will double the current daily testing capacity from 20,000 to 40,000, which includes both diagnostic and antibody tests. The state will manage the actual tests in its laboratories, but the federal government will be responsible for handling the international supply chain issues associated with testing that are out of the state’s purview.
In his press conference today, Governor Cuomo gave the first concrete information about how the state will begin the process of reopening. A basic phased approach will take into account two factors: 1) How “essential” the business service or product is and 2) What the risk of “infection spread” of the business is. To get to that point, New York will begin state-wide antibody testing and tracing. Last week, the state Department of Health announced that it had developed its own such test and this week will begin 2,000 finger prick antibody tests per day. New York has also asked the FDA to expedite the process of a similar finger prick test that could test up to 100,000 New Yorkers a day.