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Daily COVID-19 deaths, hospitalizations hit new lows in NY
New York has witnessed new lows in the number of daily COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths since the pandemic hit the worst-affected US state, Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
Cuomo said at Saturday's briefing that 32 people in the state died due to COVID-19 on Friday, down from a record-high of 800 some nine weeks ago, reports Xinhua news agency.
Meanwhile, the number of total hospitalizations was down to 1,734, the lowest level since March 20 when the state, the epicentre of the pandemic in the US, was about to enter a lockdown.
Over 20 states in the country have seen a spike in COVID-19 cases since reopening, while New York's rates continue to drop "because we continue to remain smart and vigilant in this fight against the COVID virus", said Cuomo.
Out of the 70,840 tests conducted across the state on Friday, 916, or 1.29 per cent, were positive.
New York City's positive rate remains the highest in the state at 1.7 per cent, according to the state government.
Cuomo said the Western New York region is expected to enter phase three of reopening on June 16 and the Capital Region will follow a day later, with nail salons and other personal care services to resume operation and restaurants to offer indoor dining.
Five of the state's 10 regions have already entered phase three, while New York City, which started the reopening process on June 8, is the only one that remains in phase one.
The Governor also signed a new law on Saturday to repeal the criminalization of wearing a mask in public, an outdated provision that is currently in conflict with the governor's executive order requiring all New Yorkers to wear face coverings while in public to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
With the addition of 916 confirmed COVID-19 cases on Friday, the statewide total increased to 382,630.