Cortland County reports14 new cases of virus
Cortland County reported 14 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, raising the number of confirmed cases to 3,636.
In all, 29 new cases were confirmed in Cortland, Tompkins and Cayuga counties, bringing them to 12,362 cases since the pandemic began. No new deaths were reported, the number of people who have died from the virus remaining at 194.
- The Cortland County Health Department was monitoring 382 patients, 96 of them confirmed positive. Eight people are hospitalized, bringing to 173 the number hospitalized since the pandemic began. The Cortland County Health Department has received 81,625 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 six new cases Wednesday. The number of confirmed cases rose to 3,414, reports the state Health Department. A total of 1,311,233 people have been tested. Forty-two 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 nine new cases Wednesday. Confirmed cases rose to 5,312. The state reports 133,822 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.
- The State University of New York’s coronavirus dashboard was unavailable Wednesday night. SUNY Cortland reported 14 new cases on campus Tuesday. Seventy-three people were in isolation and 100 in quarantine. It has reported 241 cases since Jan. 16, but that includes positive cases of all SUNY Cortland students anywhere, not necessarily those in Cortland. Campus testing has shown 155 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 four cases Tuesday, bringing it to 695 confirmed cases since Aug. 15. It was at 26 cases of its 100-case limit between Feb. 13 and Feb. 26 before it would go to remote-only learning.
- Tompkins Cortland Community College reported one case Thursday, the first reported case since Dec. 19. The total was 22 cases since Aug. 1. The college has tested 2,519 people. Two students were quarantined; one was isolated.
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.
Cortland County planning clinics
The Cortland County Health Department and Guthrie Cortland Medical Center plan a COVID-19 vaccination clinic from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the SUNY Cortland ice arena, following a similar clinic that was planned for Wednesday night.
The Saturday clinic includes appointments from last Saturday’s clinic, which was canceled because the county did not receive its allotment of vaccine, the county reports. The health department expects to administer almost 400 doses Saturday.
The county will continue to vaccinate those individuals who are eligible in New York State’s 1b category as well as those with co-morbid conditions. Among those eligible for the vaccine in the 1b category are grocery store employees. The county is working with businesses to identify eligible employees.
“We anticipate that offering clinics on Saturdays will provide increased opportunity for eligible individuals to attend,” said interim Public Health Director Lisa Perfetti.
SUNY revises remote-only learning trigger
The state Department of Health has revised its standards for requiring university campuses to go to remote-only learning, meaning SUNY Cortland does not automatically go online if it confirms 100 cases in a two-week span.
Instead, the college announced Tuesday night, the threshold would be 209 cases in a rolling 14-day period before triggering remote-only learning, based on the on-campus population of 4,185 students, faculty and staff.
Over the past 14 days, SUNY Cortland reported 110 positive tests. Because the metric is always based on the previous 14 days, the number of positive tests will rise or fall daily.
“We are excited that the state has made this change, which is endorsed by our own health officials and experts,” SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum said. “It will provide a more accurate picture of the university’s infection rate and our progress in containing the virus.”
The new protocol was favored by epidemiologists and medical professionals as a better measure of COVID-19 infection on college campuses, the college states in a release.