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Gov Cuomo announces closure of indoor dining in NYC

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Moses Kuwema

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced the closure of indoor dining in New York City, effective from Monday December 14. 

The announcement was made on Saturday as the city's rising hospitalization rate fails to stabilize over the last five days.

During a press conference Friday, Governor Cuomo said Outdoor dining and takeout would be permitted to continue.

The Governor also outlined the new criteria for the State's cluster zone system saying if a region is projected to hit 90 percent hospital capacity within three weeks, it will be designated a Red Zone, closing non-essential sectors.

"The Orange Zone will be triggered if a region hits 4 percent positivity over 10 days and data shows they are three weeks from 85 percent capacity, or if the department of health determines an unacceptably high rate of hospital admissions. 

"A region will enter the Yellow Zone if they reach a positivity rate of 3 percent over 10 days and are in the top 10 percent for hospital admission per capita and hospitalizations growth by week," Governor Cuomo said.

He said new zones based on the above changes will be announced on Monday with data from the last week and weekend.

"If you are a yellow zone or if you are an orange zone-this is all determined on the facts, and what it is saying is 'in your community, you have a problem. It means you have to take it seriously," he said.

Governor Cuomo announced that gyms and salons will now be allowed to operate in Orange Zones, with limited capacity and weekly testing.
The Governor also announced changes to the statewide hospital rules. 

"On top of the initial 25 percent capacity increase that was previously ordered, hospitals must remain under 85 percent by either adding an additional 25 percent capacity, reducing elective surgeries or both. If over 85 percent, that hospital is now in a critical situation," he said.

On the COVID-19 vaccines, Governor Cuomo said the state will be implementing a public education campaign to deal with the skepticism in addition to an outreach effort to poor and communities of color.

Governor Cuomo announced that 346,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine are expected to be delivered to New York State the week of December 21, on top of the 170,000 Pfizer doses coming this weekend.

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