SECOND WAVE: Cases surge on tip of Rockaways, five NYC areas above 5% COVID-19 positivity

The global outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in New York City
People wait in line for City MD, as the global outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in New York City on Nov. 14, 2020.
REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs

Breezy Point, Queens — the summer oasis on the western tip of the Rockaway Peninsula — has the highest number of COVID-19 positivity in the latest data provided by the New York City Health Department.

The community’s 7-day positivity average between Nov. 6-12 is tops in the city at 6.55%, with 11 new cases detected in the 11697 ZIP code. Four other communities across the city have 7-day positivity rates above 5%: Washington Heights, Manhattan (10040 ZIP, 5.23%, 55 new positive cases); Midland Beach/New Dorp, Staten Island (10306, 5.19%, 92 new cases); Graniteville/Mariners Harbor, Staten Island (10303, 5.07%, 38 new cases); and Midland Beach/South Beach, Staten Island (10305, 5.03%, 63 new cases). 

Richmond Hill, Queens (11418), which two days ago had the highest rate in the city, dipped below the 5% positivity rate on Monday, coming in with 4.95% and 48 new cases. But COVID-19 cases appear to be surging in Elmhurst, Queens, which had been the tragic epicenter of the first wave of the outbreak during March and April. 

The 11373 ZIP code for Elmhurst has a 7-day positivity rate of 4.88%, with 114 new cases detected, according to the latest Health Department figures.

In all, 21 neighborhoods across the city now have a COVID-19 positivity rate of 4% or higher.

The city is using the 7-day COVID-19 positivity rate to assess the progression and spread of COVID-19 across the five boroughs. The figure is used, in particular, to determine whether public schools should remain open.

Overall, the citywide 7-day COVID-19 positivity rate reported on Nov. 16 was 2.77%, still below the 3% threshold that would trigger the closure of public schools and a shift to online learning.

During an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday morning, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that public schools would be open Tuesday.

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