Brace for flu season on top of pandemic, governor says

Brace for flu season on top of pandemic, governor says
WWNY- COVID-19 Updates (Source: WWNY)

ALBANY, N.Y. (WWNY) - The state’s COVID-19 numbers look good, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo is worried about what might happen when flu season kicks in a couple weeks from now.

The governor said Wednesday that the Department of Health is sending letters out to counties asking about their plans to deal with the coronavirus and the flu simultaneously.

The governor said there’s likely to be a testing backlog because the same labs that are busy with COVID-19 tests now are the same ones that normally take care of flu tests.

So, when both diseases are happening at the same time, testing delays could get worse.

“That all happens in a matter of weeks,” Cuomo said.

He also said schools that will be screening students for COVID-19 systems will have problems because the flu has similar symptoms.

He also advised schools that are about to open to take into consideration what’s happened at other schools and colleges that have had outbreaks shortly after reopening and have had to close again.

It’s “extraordinarily good news,” he said, that the state has gone 12 days in a row with an infection rate lower than 1 percent.

On Tuesday, about .78 percent of the 80,000 people tested were positive. The north country’s rate was .1 percent.

But, he said, people have to stay vigilant.

“Maybe we are at halftime in the game and we ended the first half in good shape after a brutal first half and we’re in the locker room.,” he said.

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