November 28, 2021

Coronavirus briefs 2/17

coronavirus particles

Cortland County reports 32 new COVID cases

Cortland County reported 32 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, raising the number of confirmed cases to 3,521.

In all, 43 new cases were confirmed in Cortland, Tompkins and Cayuga counties, bringing them to 12,043 cases since the pandemic began. No new deaths were reported, the number of people who have died from the virus remaining at 193.

  • The Cortland County Health Department was monitoring 534 patients, 139 of them confirmed positive. Eight people are hospitalized, bringing to 169 the number hospitalized since the pandemic began. The Cortland County Health Department has received 78,561 negative test results. The county has reported 22 deaths in addition to 39 who died at nursing homes 20 at Cortland Park Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 15 at Crown Park Rehabilitation and Nursing Center and four at Guthrie Cortland Medical Center’s nursing and rehabilitation facility.
  • Tompkins County reported five new cases Tuesday. The number of confirmed cases rose to 3,340, reports the state Health Department. A total of 1,196,423 people have been tested. Forty-one Tompkins residents have died, including 10 at Oak Hill Rehabilitation and Nursing Care Center, state data show, six at Beechtree Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing, three at Groton Community Health Care Center and two at Cayuga Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.
  • In Cayuga County, the state Health Department reported six new cases Tuesday. Confirmed cases rose to 5,182. The state reports 128,997 people have been tested. Eighty-seven people have died, the state reports, including 48 at The Commons on St. Anthony and two at Auburn Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.


  • SUNY Cortland reported 21 new cases on campus Tuesday. Seventy-six people were in isolation and 43 in quarantine. It has reported 168 cases since Jan. 16, but that includes positive cases of all SUNY Cortland students anywhere, not necessarily those in Cortland. Campus testing has shown 106 cases this semester. It reported 781 cases between Aug. 26 and Jan. 9, college and State University of New York data show.
  • Cornell University reported three new cases Friday, two Saturday and three Sunday, bringing it to 672 confirmed cases since Aug. 15. It was at five cases of its 100-case limit between Feb. 13 and Feb. 26 before it would be required to go to remote-only learning.
  • Tompkins Cortland Community College last reported a new case Dec. 19. The total was 21 cases since Aug. 1. The college has tested 2,235 people. No people were quarantined or isolated.

Public schools

Since the school year began, here are how many cases of COVID-19 have been reported at schools, according to the New York State Health Department.

Guthrie eases COVID policies on visitation

Guthrie hospitals, including Guthrie Cortland Medical Center in Cortland, will ease coronavirus-related visitation policies starting today:

  • Visitors must wear a mask and be screened for temperature and COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Inpatients may have one visitor at a time from 10 a.m. to noon and 4 to 6 p.m. daily. Visitors should leave the hospital when not visiting a patient.
  • An obstetrics patient may be accompanied by one support person and a doula.
  • Pediatric patients may have one visitor.
  • Surgical outpatients may have one visitor during intake and discharge.
  • Emergency department patients may have one visitor.
  • Patients at end of life may have two visitors.
  • Visits remain restricted at Cortland Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Do not visit if you have a fever above 100 degrees, of if you have COVID-19 symptoms or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days. Children are not permitted.

SUNY students must get tested twice weekly

All SUNY Cortland students must be tested for COVID-19 twice weekly instead of once, SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras announced Monday, in light of a rising number of cases at the college and a weekend party that drew more than 70 unmasked partiers.

“This action is unfortunate, but critically necessary to contain a COVID-19 outbreak that threatens not only SUNY Cortland’s ability to continue modified in-person experiences but the health and safety of our community,” college President Erik J. Bitterbaum said in a release. “None of us can singlehandedly reverse the upward trend of the virus among our students, but all of us working together can bring it back down.”

The college has reported 85 cases on campus in the past month.

Over the weekend, four students were suspended when Cortland police found them hosting a large party where partiers were not masked. Bitterbaum said the event very likely spread the virus.

“Increased testing and quick isolation and quarantine will play a pivotal role in reversing the trend, but it won’t work without near-universal adherence to social distancing, avoiding large groups and wearing face coverings,” Bitterbaum said. “And make no mistake, potential super-spreader events like the off-campus parties of this weekend will not be tolerated.”

Tompkins County gets 800 doses

The Tompkins County will get 800 first doses of COVID-19 vaccine this week, setting aside 200 of those doses for people older than 65 with underlying medical conditions.

The remaining doses will be offered to grocery store workers and pre-kindergarten to high school workers.

The department, with Cayuga Health System, Ithaca City School District and the Grater Ithaca Activities Center, will have a pop-up vaccination clinic Friday using 300 doses — 100 for seniors with medical conditions and the rest for the phase 1a and 1b populations.

The state has directed pharmacies to vaccinate people over 65, with or without medical conditions, and for hospitals to vaccinate healthcare workers.

For this week, Tompkins County announced it will work with Titus Towers and McGraw House, which serve older adults with limited income, to register their residents with medical conditions.

The Health Department will contact eligible people directly, said Public Health Director Frank Kruppa.