Coronavirus (COVID-19) Fifty-Eighth Update

Thursday, May 7, 2020
Dear Guilderland residents:
 
In its daily update today, the Albany County Department of Health (DOH) reported that there are, on a cumulative basis, 1,277 confirmed cases, and that there are now 28 persons hospitalized and seven persons in the intensive care unit.  There were three deaths yesterday which brought the County’s death toll to 56.  There are now 1,041 persons under mandatory quarantine and five persons in precautionary quarantine.  The County noted that 2,894 people have completed quarantine, including 753 persons who had tested positive and have recovered.  The County’s dashboard on COVID-19 statistics, which is updated each night and does not reflect the numbers shared at the County’s daily briefing, shows how these numbers have changed since March 11th:  https://legacy.livestories.com/s/v2/covid-19-dashboard-albany-county-ny/dabd57f3-5285-4666-97fc-53c5bf4b8560/.   
 
The County also reported that, since the outset of the pandemic, overall crime, including petty larceny, drug charges, and vehicles and traffic offenses has declined but that there have been upticks in domestic incidents.  Some felonies, including burglaries, robberies and weapons charges, had remained steady.
 
In today’s press briefing, Governor Cuomo again noted that hospitalizations, intubations, and new admissions relating to COVID-19 in the State have continued to decline but that, for the fourth consecutive day, the State’s death toll was flat.  He also stated that, in many parts of the State, customers in supermarkets were more than twice as likely as healthcare workers to test positive for COVID-19.  The Governor believed that this discrepancy was due to the stronger likelihood that healthcare workers were following health protocols for cleaning hands and using sanitizers, as well as wearing masks and gloves.  The Governor concluded that he would soon issue another Executive Order that extends the State’s moratorium on evictions until August 20th, bars late fees for unpaid rent, and allows the use of security deposits to pay rent fees. 
 
In another sign of a return to some sense of normalcy, the NYS DOH issued a waiver to Albany Medical Center (AMC) which would allow elective outpatient surgeries and procedures which have been suspended for nearly two months.   To receive the waiver, AMC had to have an approved plan to ensure capacity to handle a surge in COVID-19 patients.  This development should also help the Town’s EMS Department which, like the region as a whole, has noticed a marked increase in strokes and heart attacks.  It is possible that some residents have forgone catheterizations, pace makers monitoring, and other vital treatments during the pandemic because of concerns about conditions at local hospitals.  
 
I have received rave reviews for the Guilderland Farmers’ Market’s online option for ordering wide-ranging food, crafts, and special gifts for pickup at the Star Plaza parking lot.  Here’s the link: https://www.guilderlandfarmersmarket.com/online-market.  As of today, the online market has 18 vendors.  To order for this Sunday’s pickup between Noon and 1:30pm for Mother’s Day, your order must be placed by 7pm on Friday.  More details about ordering and pickup are on the website.  
 
We have a limited supply of washable cotton face masks (five masks per sealed package) for residents who do not have access to masks or for delivery to vulnerable persons.   To confirm the availability of masks for pick-up at the Police Department’s lobby at Town Hall or to schedule a delivery for special needs, please call (518) 356-1980 ext. 1038 or email police@togny.org.   
 
Thank you for staying safe and calm.
 
Peter G. Barber
Town Supervisor