New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio said officials are “ready” to act if the Delta variant becomes a major priority in the metropolis, and that he sees no need to tighten restrictions “at the moment.”
DeBlasio sought to reduce any immediate risk of a major fire in New York City of the Delta variant, a more transmissible strain of Covid-19 that has been responsible for a source of new infections in countries such as the UK, Australia and India, where it was first identified.
The mayor said city officials were watching the new tension “very closely,” but the “bottom line is that now, we’re winning the case against the Delta variant” because of vaccine assumptions across the city.
“We’ll always be ready if we see things start to turn around,” he said. The kind of change that could trigger new restrictions could “take weeks and weeks,” he said, and that officials “would make adjustments when we see really consistent evidence.”
New York City’s coronavirus indicators “were going in the right direction,” DeBlasio said. The state, overall, conducted more tests than anywhere else in the United States over the past week, but it also had among the lowest positivity rates in the country.
Asked by reporters if the spread of the Delta variant in New York City could trigger new closures, DeBlasio said, “We don’t see this probability at the moment.”
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, New York City reported about 2.2 new cases per 100,000 people a day in the week ended June 28, compared to the national average of about 3 , 1.
In the four weeks ending June 5, 3.1 percent of genomically sequenced cases in New York state were of the Delta variant. Anthony Fauci, senior adviser to the White House coronavirus working group, said last week the Delta strain made about 20 percent of new cases in the fortnight ending June 19.
DeBlasio and his public health officials reiterated that vaccination was the city’s best protection against the negative effects of the more communicable Covid-19 strains.