County Executive McCoy Provides an Update on the COVID-19 Response in Albany County
Joined by State Attorney General James to Discuss Fight Against Price Gouging, Fraud & More During the Pandemic
Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy announced today with County Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Elizabeth Whalen that as of this morning, there are now 1,398 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in Albany County, an increase of 12 over the last 24 hours. The five-day average of daily new positive cases has now dropped to 12.4. Additionally, there are now 889 people under mandatory quarantine and 19 people under precautionary quarantine. To date, 3,551 individuals have completed quarantine, with 896 of them having tested positive and recovered.
Sadly, four county residents passed away overnight – two men and a woman in their 70’s, along with another man in his 20’s. That brings the county’s death toll to 66. With 30 people now hospitalized, the hospitalization rate for Albany County stands at 2.14%, down slightly from 2.23% yesterday. The number of those individuals who are in Intensive Care Units (ICU) is now at four, a decrease of three since yesterday’s briefing. Two of the above reported deaths were residents of Shaker Place Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.
New York Attorney General Letitia James joined the County Executive for the daily briefing via Zoom to discuss some of her efforts to protect residents from price gouging, fraudulent scams and support for small businesses seeking loans through the federal Paycheck Protection Program.
“Weeks ago, I discussed the data showing people in their 20’s had the second highest number of positive cases among any age group in the county. And while most of those in this age group who contract the virus will have mild or no symptoms, today is a tragic example of how dangerous COVID-19 can be for everyone. I want to be clear, we will not reopen the economy unless it’s safe to do so, and when we do, it will be with the proper protocols in place to protect public health and safety,” said County Executive McCoy.
“The fallout of this public health crisis has taken a number of forms, which is why I’m thankful to have a fighter like Attorney General James protecting our seniors and hardworking families from those who seek to exploit this pandemic for their own personal gain. That includes people posing as Albany and Troy police officers attempting to steal identities. Beyond these efforts, she has also been a steadfast partner to Albany County in our fight to hold Big Pharma accountable for the opioid epidemic,” he continued.
During the briefing, Attorney General James discussed what she has seen since the pandemic began, including price gouging of hand sanitizer and masks at the beginning of the crisis, as well as essential items like eggs, meat, medicine and toilet paper more recently. The Attorney General has also exposed the marketing and selling of fake cures for the COVID-19 in the form of lotions, air purifiers, toothpastes and more. She reminded everyone that there is no cure for the disease. Those who see any of these kinds of scams or price gouging should contact the Attorney General’s Office at 1-800-771-7755 or United Way of the Greater Capital Region’s 2-1-1 hotline.
County Executive McCoy highlighted some of his work as a member of the Capital Region Control Room, and clarified some of the specific industries that fall within each phase of the reopening process. Retail that will open for curbside pickup will include florists, jewelry, luggage and shoe stores. Wholesale trade includes clothing, furniture, and household appliances. Finally, Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting will include greenhouses, nurseries and crop production. The complete list can be found at Governor Cuomo’s New York Forward website.
During the briefing, County Executive McCoy also thanked Nanoleaf-Canada in Toronto and company CEO Gimmy Chu, who saw the work being carried out in Albany County and donated 2,000 surgical masks for the County Department of Health to distribute to healthcare workers.
The County Executive also highlighted the success of the walk-up mobile testing site, which made its first stop in Coeymans yesterday and allowed 21 people there to get tested for COVID-19 (photo attached). The remainder of this week’s schedule for testing is below, and a new schedule will be posted to the Albany County website in the coming days. The schedule is based on demand and mobile site locations are updated weekly based on that need. To date, 1,163 people have been tested at the mobile/walk-up sites in Albany County. All testing is by appointment only, after being screened for symptoms over the phone. To be screened, please call (518) 465-4771.
Whitney M. Young, Jr. Health Center - 920 Lark Drive, Albany
- Friday: 1:00 – 4:00pm
Rotating Locations & Dates for the Week of May 11
Each week the mobile sites will rotate morning & afternoon testing. The full updated schedule can be found here.
- Thursday, May 14
- 1:30-4:00pm: Front of Rensselaer City Hall, 62 Washington St, Rensselaer
- Friday, May 15
- 9:00am – 12 noon: Front of the Rensselaer County Administration Building, 1600 7th Ave, Troy
- 1:30-4:00pm: Whitney Young Troy Health Center, 849 2nd Ave, Lansingburgh
County Executive McCoy continues to highlight the latest testing site in Albany County at Priority 1 Urgent Care that is now also providing antibody testing, located in Hamilton Square at 2080 Western Avenue in Guilderland. The partnership was made possible by Albany County supplying the facility with critical personal protective equipment for the staff and supplemental test kits. Testing will be reimbursed by an individual’s health insurance, and will be done by appointments only after patients come in to be screened for expanded CDC symptoms. Priority 1 is also now doing antibody testing. To schedule an appointment, you can call (518) 867-8040.
County Executive McCoy also encouraged those who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms to register for the drive-thru community testing site at Rite Aid, 1863 Central Avenue in Colonie. Over 650 tests have been given there. Testing is free for those who are eligible based on CDC guidelines and are at least 18 years old. It’s available between 9am and 5pm, seven days a week by appointment only. Registration is now available at www.riteaid.com. Tests will be conducted from within an individual’s car with self-swab nasal tests and with the help of a pharmacist.
For those experiencing stress, anxiety or depression while confined to their homes for extended periods of time, the Albany County COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line is available seven days a week from 8am to 8pm at (518) 269-6634. Anyone experiencing a psychiatric emergency should still call the Albany County Mobile Crisis Team at (518) 549–6500. The 24-hour sexual assault hotline number is (518) 447-7716.
The County Executive continues to offer online videos on coping, crafts and reading, AAU karate, exercise, proper use of personal protective equipment and more.