Updated Zone Metrics and Other COVID-19 Briefs for December 14, 2020

Last week, Governor Cuomo announced new metrics by which micro-cluster focus zones will be determined to help control COVID-19 spread and protect hospital capacity.

Under these updated metrics, micro-cluster zones will now be determined as follows:

  • A red zone will be implemented in a region where hospital capacity is within 21 days of reaching 90 percent, even after the cancellation of elective procedures and a 50 percent increase in bed capacity in hospitals in the region.
  • A geographic area will enter an Orange Zone if it has a 4 percent positivity rate (7-day average) over the last 10 days and it is located in a region that has reached 85 percent hospital capacity. Alternatively, a geographic area may also become an Orange Zone if the state Department of Health (DOH) determines the area or region’s rate of hospital admissions is unacceptably high and a zone designation is appropriate to control the rate of growth.
  • A geographic area will be eligible to be classified as a Yellow Zone if it has a 3 percent positivity rate (7-day average) over the past 10 days and is in the top 10 percent in the state for hospital admissions per capita over the past week and is experiencing week-to-week growth in daily admissions.

Earlier last week, the Governor directed DOH to begin implementing the state’s “surge and flex” protocol under which all hospitals were mandated to begin expanding their bed capacity by 25 percent to further prepare hospitals for a future COVID-19 surge.  

The Governor also issued updated rules for indoor dining, gyms and salons. More information is here. 

CDC Vaccine Informational Materials  

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has posted “COVID-19 Vaccination Training Programs and Reference Materials for Healthcare Professionals.”

It includes: vaccine storage and handling; vaccine administration; communicating with patients about vaccines; and COVID-19 vaccine training and clinical materials.

Additional information is here.

CDC: COVID-19 Symptoms May Overlap with Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

The CDC has also released information about the similarities in symptoms of SARS-COV-2 infection and carbon monoxide poisoning. 

The CDC advises that the symptoms of COVID-19 may overlap with symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, including headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and altered mental status with no alternative explanation.

CDC reminds professionals who are assessing patients for SARS-CoV-2 infection to consider the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Specific information on carbon monoxide poisoning is here.

New York City (NYC) PPE Support Center Webinars

The NYC Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Support Center is holding webinars to help agencies with accessing PPE through this Center.

Sessions will be held on December 14, 15 and 16 from 11 a.m. to noon and 1 to 2 p.m. Registration is here.

As communicated multiple times to members, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (NYC DOHMH) is making PPE available through Medline for agencies that have an emergency need and who need PPE to protect staff and patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

HCA advises agencies that NYC may seek to recover costs from providers for provision of this PPE if the city is unable to get reimbursed under applicable Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) emergency reimbursement policies. At this time, FEMA policies do not enable reimbursement of supplies provided to private for-profit entities, and, therefore, the city may seek cost recovery from these entities at a later date. 

For general questions about the PPE Service Center, e-mail NYC DOHMH at PPESupport@health.nyc.gov. 

For questions about navigating the Medline site, placing an order, or issues with your shopping cart, contact the Medline NYC Customer Service Desk at 866-478-1490 ext. 222 or NYCcustomersupport@medline.com

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