In a press conference on Wednesday, NYC mayor Bill de Blasio confirmed that the recently identified NYC variant (since christened B-1526) is outpacing the original strain in spreading speed, and his senior advisor for Public Health, Dr. Jay Varma, said that these two variants combined account for 51% of all cases in the city. This is coming from a preliminary analysis, and so far, they have not found that B-1526 is more deadly or that it may evade vaccine efficacy. However, it’s still worrying.
It’s probably contributing to the relatively slower pace of decline in cases in NY versus the rest of the country:
And this comes when NYC is increasing indoor dining capacity to 50%, and when NY is going to scrap its rule on people from out of state having to quarantine on April 1. De Blasio has told New Yorkers to stay the course, but the people in charge (Andrew Cuomo) don’t seem to want to follow that advice.