Hochul wants to raise age to buy guns to 21

Gov. Kathy Hochul, pictured May 17, 2022, in Buffalo, reported raising $10.3 million during the last reporting period that began Jan. 15. Scott Olson/Getty Images/TNS

NEW YORK — After weeks of uber-contagious omicron subvariants rippling across New York, something else is finally spreading: good news.

The state’s weeklong COVID-19 case rate fell for the sixth straight day on Monday, hitting its lowest level since May 7, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office said.

Daily coronavirus death tolls have climbed after slipping into the single digits some days last month, and the state announced 24 more deaths on Monday. But the sustained case decline offered a welcome signal as New Yorkers hope for a summer free of virus anxieties.

“As we continue to monitor the numbers, I encourage New Yorkers to continue using the tools to protect against and treat COVID-19,” Hochul said in a statement.

The state’s test positivity remained quite high, with 9.1% of swabs delivering positive results in the latest daily report from the governor’s office. And metrics remain muddled as many New Yorkers test themselves at home with rapid diagnostics.

Hochul gave a familiar message in her statement, but one that not everyone in the state has heeded: “The best way to stay out of the hospital with COVID-19 is by keeping up to date with your vaccination and booster doses.”

About 95% of adult New Yorkers have completed their initial inoculation series, according to government figures. But only 56% of the eligible population has added an extra layer of protection by receiving a booster jab, according to the state Health Department.

Vaccination rates also lag considerably among younger New Yorkers, who face lower COVID-19 risks but occasionally land in the hospital with the virus. Less than half of New Yorkers between the ages of 5 and 11 have received even a single jab, according to state figures.

Hochul also continued her calls for New Yorkers to keep testing as numbers fall, saying in her statement that the “worst thing we could let happen is let our guard down.”

“Be sure to get tested to ensure you’re not spreading the virus to your loved ones,” Hochul said in the statement. “And, if you test positive, talk to your doctor about treatment.”

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