coronavirus

Policy

The mass vaccination site at Yankee Stadium opened in February for Bronx residents only; Photo: Don Pollard / Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

New York this week will start administering the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine during overnight hours at three state-run mass vaccination sites, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday. Vaccine hubs at the Javits Center, Yankee Stadium, and the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse will distribute the single-dose vaccine, which was granted emergency authorization by the Food and Drug Administration over the weekend, to eligible New Yorkers starting this Friday, March 5. Appointments will open at 11 a.m. on Wednesday for vaccinations at Yankee Stadium and 8 a.m. on Thursday for the Javits Center and the Fairgrounds.

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City Living, Technology

Photo courtesy of Governor Cuomo’s office

Governor Cuomo’s office today announced a pilot program of Excelsior Pass, a new mobile technology that will confirm an individual’s vaccination or recent negative COVID-19 test. The purpose of the platform, which was developed in partnership with IBM, is to help fast-track the reopening of theaters, stadiums, and other businesses as more New Yorkers are vaccinated. The initial phase of the pilot was successful during a February 27th Brooklyn Nets game at the Barclays Center, and it will be tested again during a March 2nd New York Rangers game at Madison Square Garden.

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Bronx, Policy

Photo by David L Roush on Wikimedia

New York City this week will open a mass coronavirus vaccination site at Co-op City, the world’s largest housing cooperative. Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday announced the site will start vaccinations for eligible New Yorkers on March 4 at the Bronx development, which is home to over 15,300 apartments across 72 buildings. “Communities felt deep, deep losses from the coronavirus in the Bronx,” de Blasio said during a press briefing. “The Bronx is too often overlooked. We can’t let that happen.”

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Restaurants, Williamsburg

All photos courtesy of Peter Luger

As New York City restaurants expand their indoor dining capacity to 35 percent on Friday, beloved Brooklyn steakhouse Peter Luger hopes to make the experience a unique one. Celebrity wax figures will fill the empty seats of its Williamsburg dining room, as part of a partnership with Madame Tussauds New York.

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Policy

A screenshot from VaccineFinder on 2/25/21 at 10:31am

Finding a vaccine appointment in New York has not been easy, to say the least. Providers are scheduling through various websites, most of which require you to fill out a pre-screening form every time you want to check availability. So unless you get lucky or are able to sit behind the computer all day, it can feel like a daunting process. That’s why here in New York City, a local software engineer built a website called TurboVax that updates all availabilities in real-time. I personally have used this site to schedule for friends, and it’s a life-saver. What about everywhere else, though? VaccineFinder, a CDC-backed website run by epidemiologists and software developers at Boston Children’s Hospital, is hoping to create a “centralized online portal where the public can search for nearby vaccination locations with doses on hand,” according to the New York Times. But is this really feasible?

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City Living, Policy, Top Stories

COVID-19 testing site sat the Highbridge Recreation Center in Manhattan on Tuesday, May 19, 2020. Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office via Flickr

report released on Monday by the NYC Department of Health shows that 6.2 percent of new COVID cases in NYC are the  B.1.1.7 variant (more commonly known as the UK variant), an increase from 2.7 percent in January. The estimate is based on 45 identified variant cases of the 724 specimens sequenced the week of February 8-14. The week prior, it was actually 7.4 percent. On their website which has been updated to include data on variant cases, the NYC DOH says that the UK strain is “more transmissible than other variants and may cause more severe illness.”

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Crown Heights, Jamaica, More Top Stories, Policy

Photo by Jules Antonio on Wikimedia

Two coronavirus vaccination sites run by the state with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will open in Queens and Brooklyn on Wednesday, with appointments set aside for residents of specific ZIP codes. Appointment slots opened over the weekend for vaccinations at Medgar Evers College in Crown Heights and York College in Jamaica, starting this Wednesday. According to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, there are many appointments still up for grabs.

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Coney Island, Policy

Coney Island amusements can finally reopen in April

By Devin Gannon, Wed, February 17, 2021

Photo by sebastien cordat on Unsplash

Looking ahead to warmer months, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday said outdoor amusement parks, indoor family entertainment centers, and overnight summer camps in New York will be allowed to reopen. If the state’s coronavirus positivity rate continues to trend downward, indoor entertainment centers can reopen starting March 26 at 25 percent capacity, outdoor amusement parks and rides on April 9 at 33 percent capacity, and eventually, overnight summer camps in June.

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Policy

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

In a press conference this morning, Mayor de Blasio announced an overhaul of the city’s COVID vaccine scheduling portal “Vax4NYC.” The site will now be more streamlined and available in 10 languages. The announcement comes after New Yorkers with preexisting conditions became eligible to make vaccine appointments on February 14. Unsurprisingly, the state and city websites became overwhelmed, and once more than 250,000 people made appointments on Sunday alone, Governor Cuomo reported that all but four of the state’s vaccination hubs were booked through mid-April.

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Policy

NYC releases vaccination data by ZIP code

By Devin Gannon, Tue, February 16, 2021

Map shows the percentage of residents who received at least one dose of the vaccine by ZIP code as of Feb. 16, courtesy of NYC Health

New York City neighborhoods that have experienced the highest infection rates of COVID-19 are now seeing the lowest rates of vaccination, according to new data released by the city. For the first time, the city on Tuesday published a map of vaccination rates by ZIP code. According to the data, Staten Island and Manhattan have the highest vaccination rates, while “the South Bronx, parts of Central Queens, and Central Brooklyn lag behind,” Dr. Torian Easterling, the city’s First Deputy Health Commissioner, said.

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