Mask up, Brooklyn: City health officials warn of COVID spike

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A new spike in COVID-19 cases registered Friday led city health officials to renew masking advice.

New positive cases are at the highest rates since January — 14 percent of the test results reported —according to New York City’s Department of Health. In Kings County, the community risk level is also notably high.

“To help slow the spread, all New Yorkers should wear a high-quality mask, such as an N95, KN95 or KF94 in all public indoor settings and around crowds outside,” the city’s health department tweeted.

According to the department, 226 new weekly cases are being register in Brooklyn per every 100,000 people. Even with an 87% rate of vaccination in Kings County, over 11 weekly hospitalizations occur per those 100,000.

New York, Queens and Nassau Counties are seeing even larger spikes.

Mayor Eric Adams had resisted reinstating mask mandates even after the Big Apple entered a high alert level for the virus in May. Instead, he focused on antiviral treatments and at-home testing.

Just last week, Hizzoner announced the launch of the country’s first-ever mobile-based “Test to Treat” program.

“New York City may have been at the epicenter of the pandemic at the start, but now we are leading the way in prevention and mitigation,” Adams said in a statement. “By getting lifesaving medications into the hands of New Yorkers minutes after they test positive, we are once again leading the nation to quickly deliver accessible care to those who need it.”

Though cases began to level out since then, they have started to increase again since June 16, when rates were at 7.53%.

As of Thursday, more than 700,000 cases and 9,000 deaths were registered in Kings County since the onset of the pandemic in 2020. A whopping 73% of the borough’s population, almost two million people, have received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. However, that number drops to 29 percent when it comes to boosters.