Ten counties in New York state are classified as having "high" COVID-19 community levels, according to new data released Friday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
As of Friday, the nine counties are all in the Capital Region and the state's North Country.
A good number of other counties across the state are classified as having "medium" levels.
Nationwide, there are 46 total counties the CDC said have “high” levels, meaning New York state accounts for more than 20% of all "high" counties across the country.
The CDC uses a "high," "medium" and "low" classification, which is determined by the number of new cases in the county per 100,000 people in the past seven days; the number of new hospital admissions with COVID-19 in the past seven days per 100,000 people; and the percentage of staffed inpatient beds in use by patients with COVID-19 within a seven-day average.
Parts of the Southern Tier and New York City are the areas of the state classified as "low."
With a "high" level, the CDC recommends wearing masks in indoor public areas and on public transportation. There are currently no local mask requirements in the affected areas, outside of the statewide requirement for them in state-regulated care settings. Gov. Kathy Hochul lifted a mask requirement for public transportation, correctional facilities and shelters in September.
State data shows the seven-day average of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people stands at 20.44. In recent months, New York health officials and those in other states have started using cases per 100,000 residents, and not the more traditional percentage of positive results of those who have been tested, as a more accurate way of measuring infection rates.
There are currently 2,819 people in the hospital.