Crunching the COVID-19 Numbers: Just eight NYC communities above 5% positivity

People interact at Elsewhere, a music venue and nightclub in Brooklyn, New York
Life is stirring across New York City again as COVID-19 infections continue to drop citywide. Just eight NYC areas had 7-day positivity averages above 5% in the latest NYC Health Department data.
REUTERS/Gaia Squarci

The rapid reduction in COVID-19 continues across New York City, as evidenced by the latest city Health Department data which revealed that just eight communities in the five boroughs exceeded a 7-day positivity rate of 5%. 

Citywide, the 7-day positivity rate on April 30 stood at 2.86%. That’s nearly half the rate it was just 13 days prior, when on April 17, the city’s Health Department a citywide average of 5.06%. 

With more than 6.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered thus far, it’s apparent that the inoculation is making a real impact in reducing the spread of the virus even after earlier fears that different, more contagious strains of the illness would propagate another surge in cases.

At this point, no surge appears imminent. Communities which as recently as mid-April had COVID-19 positivity rates exceeding 10% have seen the rate of infection plunge by almost half.

The Flushing/Murray Hill/Queensboro Hill area of Queens (ZIP code 11354) again has the highest 7-day COVID-19 positivity rate — but over the last two weeks, it’s significantly decreased. As of April 12, the rate stood at 10.69%, but for the period between April 23-29, the rate was down to 6.18%. 

Ozone Park (11416) saw an even steeper decline. On April 12, it had the second highest rate at 10.22%; as of April 29, that number had fallen to 4.79% — a 5.43% decrease. The community went from having the second-highest rate to the 10th highest in a span of a fortnight.

Along with Flushing/Murray Hill/Queensboro Hill, seven other areas of the city had registered 5% or higher 7-day positivity rates between April 23-29: Richmond Hill, Queens (11418, 5.69%); Charleston/Prince’s Bay/Woodrow, Staten Island (10309, 5.55%); Cypress Hills/East New York, Brooklyn (11207, 5.43%); Sunset Park, Brooklyn (11220, 5.39%), Gravesend/Homecrest, Brooklyn (11223, 5.26%), South Ozone Park, Queens (11420, 5.24%) and Tottenville, Staten Island (10307, 5.18%).

New York City Health Department

As for the highest raw number of new COVID-19 infections, two areas of Cypress Hills/East New York occupy the top two spots in the city. Between April 23-29, the 11207 ZIP code registered 183 cases, while the 11208 ZIP code logged 150 infections — a combined 333 cases.

Yet that number was still 21.6% fewer than the tally recorded between April 13-19, when the 11208 ZIP code had 257 cases and 11207 ZIP code had 168 infections — a combined 425 cases. 

Brooklyn areas dominated the top 10 list of highest total infections between April 23-29. Along with Cypress Hills/East New York, the other areas of the borough on the list include Sunset Park (11220, 147 cases); Ocean Hill/Brownsville (11212, 123 cases); Gravesend/Homecrest (11223, 117 cases); Flatbush/Prospect Lefferts Gardens (11226, 108 cases); and Canarsie (11236, 104 cases).

New York City Health Department

Manhattan continues to have the fewest new COVID-19 cases in the city, with seven areas logging three or fewer cases total between April 23-29. The Financial District (ZIP codes 10004 and 10006) and Battery Park City (ZIP codes 10280 and 10282) each had a combined three cases.

Two ZIP codes outside of Manhattan — City Island, Bronx (10464) and Douglaston/Little Neck, Queens (11363) each had just one COVID-19 case.

New York City Health Department

The steep reduction in COVID-19 cases indicated in city’s Health Department data seems to be confirmed through state Health Department figures announced on Sunday.

New York’s statewide 7-day positivity rate, as of May 1, was down to 1.49% — with New York City registering a 1.78% rate. Of the 2,849 new positive cases reported on May 1, 1,304 of them (45.7%) emanated from the five boroughs.

The reduced statewide positivity rate, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo, is the lowest figure since October 2020. Hospitalizations, intensive care admissions and intubations are also continuing to drop.

Even with the slowing spread of COVID-19, the virus continues to kill people. Another 33 New York state residents died of the virus on May 1 — including four in the Bronx, six in Brooklyn, one in Manhattan, eight in Queens and two on Staten Island.