Governor Andrew Cuomo says New York State is entering a new phase of the coronavirus pandemic.

Cuomo calls it a war against COVID-19.

The governor says we’re starting a 37-day holiday season and there will be a holiday surge on top of the fall surge.

"All the experts spoke about what was going to happen when we reach the fall—there's colder weather, more people are indoors and more people are now traveling. While there has been a change in behavior amongst the majority of people who understand and follow protocols, it's as critical as ever we continue our work and focus on preparing this state, and its residents, for winter," Cuomo said.

He says New Yorkers need to stay vigilant, wash their hands, wear masks, socially distance and follow the rules as we move through the next 37 days and beyond.

Cuomo has introduced his Five-Part “Winter Plan” to fight the virus:

1. Manage hospital capacity

2. Increase & balance testing

3. Keep schools open when safe

4. Stop the spread from small gatherings

5. Operationalize an equitable & safe vaccination program

Cuomo is also releasing the latest COVID-19 numbers for the state.

The statewide positive infection rate is 4.57 percent.

The test positivity rate in the focus areas is 6.2 percent and the statewide positivity rate excluding those areas is just over four-percent.

Hospitalizations have increased to over 3,500 and 54 people died from COVID-19 yesterday.

 

CHECK THEM OUT: 100 years of Christmas toys, gifts and fads