ALBANY — New York state received reports of 145,811 COVID-19 diagnostic test results on Wednesday — a record high, according to the governor’s office.
In the top 20 zip codes in areas that have seen recent outbreaks — Brooklyn, Queens and Rockland and Orange counties — 7,349 tests were conducted, yielding 426 positives or a 5.8% positivity rate.
In the remainder of the state, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office said, 138,462 tests were conducted yielding 1,410 positives, or a 1.01% positivity rate.
“The tests, and the reason we’re increasing tests, is we’re testing two universes — the normal statewide testing, which is what we’ve been doing, and then testing just in the hot spot zip codes,” Cuomo said in a press release. “Some have reported that the state’s infection rate is going up. That is not a fact and that is incorrect.”
The governor said clusters are what state health officials are watching.
“The clusters are 6% of the state population,” he said. “I don’t think there’s any other state that does enough testing to even know what 6% of the population is doing. So don’t confuse 6% of the population and say it’s representative of the state.”
Areas in hot spot communities, predominantly in Brooklyn, Queens and Rockland and Orange Counties, will continue to be subject of focused testing efforts including access to rapid testing machines.
Overall, the statewide positive test rate remained at 1.26%, the same as the previous day.
Nevertheless, the new hot spots have contributed to a 68% rise in hospitalizations since the start of September. An additional six people were hospitalized with the virus Wednesday, bringing the total statewide to 754.
An additional 10 people died across New York due to the virus yesterday, increasing the statewide death toll to 25,555 since the start of the pandemic.
Western New York saw a testing positivity rate of 1.4% on Wednesday, up from 0.9% on Tuesday, when the region was below 1% for the first time in several days.
Wednesday’s positivity rate for Western New York was the second highest of any region in the state — only behind Mid-Hudson, which is at 2.2%.