Cuomo: New York in ‘Footrace’ Amid Rising Coronavirus Cases

NEW YORK (AP) -
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. (Mike Groll/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

Gov. Andrew Cuomo urged New Yorkers to remain vigilant in the fight against the coronavirus, saying in a statement Friday that the state finds itself in a “footrace” to distribute the vaccine amid rising cases.

The latest statistics showed the state’s positivity rate falling slightly even as hospitalizations continued to rise.

The state on Friday announced 122 new deaths caused by COVID-19, bringing the state’s official count to 29,270. But the governor sounded a note of cautious optimism on the 300th day of the pandemic.

“While the vaccine is now here, we are still months away from widespread vaccination and finally reaching that light at the end of the tunnel,” the governor said

Cuomo also applauded the announcement by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention late Thursday that the United States will require airline passengers from Britain to get a negative COVID-19 test before their flight.

Several other countries have implemented similar travel restrictions because of a new variant of the coronavirus spreading in Britain and elsewhere.

“I called for the federal government to reverse its policy and am glad to see that it has now done so,” Cuomo said. “Testing people for COVID-19 before they get on planes is common sense.”