NEW YORK (PIX11) — A major New York state mandate could soon be lifted. With COVID-19 infection rates dropping, Gov. Kathy Hochul is signaling that the state’s mask mandate — which is set to expire Feb. 10 — could be done away with entirely.
The governor said she plans on making the decision very soon, pointing toward a “post-pandemic phase.” It’s a decision New Yorkers have been looking forward to.
“New Yorkers, I have to tell you, and all the business owners who’ve been following what we’ve been asking them to do, you are the reason we’re seeing these numbers and I don’t take that for granted,” Hochul said. “So, to everyone who had to enforce these rules … you did the right thing.”
The latest numbers show that more than 5,800 people are still in hospitals across the state being treated for serious illness related to COVID-19. As for 4.8 million New Yorkers who have already been infected with COVID-19 according the state, there is something else emerging: “long COVID.”
Some of the challenges associated with long COVID include fatigue, headaches and shortness of breath. As the usage of masks dies down, medical experts said the condition is something to be aware of.
Hochul said she plans to reveal more about the mask mandates this coming week. She also wanted to stress that, with the Super Bowl coming up, people gathering still need to be conscious.