NY COVID-19 infection rate down to below 1%: Cuomo

New York state, once the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic in the US, currently has one of the country’s lowest infection rates, Governor Andrew Cuomo said.

At his daily briefing on Wednesday, Cuomo said that 59,341 people across the state were tested on Tuesday, and only 0.96 per cent of them were positive, which is a “record low”, reports Xinhua news agency.

“This is one of the best days for New Yorkers since we started this long journey in a dark night,” said Cuomo.

“We once again have demonstrated that we’ve gone from the worst infection rate in the country to the best infection rate in the country.”

Another 567 cases were confirmed on Tuesday, bringing the state total to 385,142, according to the state data.

Meanwhile, the state’s daily COVID-19 deaths hit a new low at 17 and total hospitalizations further dropped to 1,479, said Cuomo.

The Governor said that New York City was on track to enter phase two of reopening on June 22, two weeks after it entered phase one.

However, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio didn’t give a date of the transition at his briefing on Wednesday, saying it might take another week for that to happen.

He said the city still has to monitor the potential impact of mass protests during the past three weeks as the coronavirus has a two-week incubation period.

“We are all mindful that we had a very unusual situation with the protests, and we’re going to see the fuller impact, if any, of the protests around this weekend, maybe into the first few days next week,” said the Mayor.

At least 20,000 New Yorkers have participated in protests against racial injustice, during which the social distancing guideline was largely ignored.

Earlier this month, de Blasio said he expected New York City could enter phase two as early as in July.