health

ALBANY COUNTY — On Sept. 20, the Biden administration announced it would once again set up a system so that free at-home tests for COVID-19 can be delivered through the United States Postal Service.

They stood together at a press conference on Sept. 20, hosted by Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy who said, “It’s about taking a chance because what we’re doing isn’t working.”

Free naloxone, as well as fentanyl and xylazine test strips, can be ordered through a new ordering portal on the Office of Addiction Services and Supports website. The agency also offers free virtual naloxone training.

An estimated 25 to 30 million adults without health insurance in the United States are to have the cost of the new vaccine covered by a bridge program that runs out in December 2024.

The state will conduct outreach to the State Education Department and BOCES to survey needs for test kits and masks. After the requests have been submitted, the state will deliver the requested tests and N-95 and KN-95 masks to each BOCES for distribution to school districts.

The Wadsworth Center “immediately enhanced” early detection efforts in New York state, looking to identify the new BA.2.86 variant, and is working in conjunction with analysts of wastewater data at Syracuse University. Looking back at the last six months, they found the new strain was not detected in New York.

Children attending daycare and pre-kindergarten through 12th grade in New York state must receive all required doses of vaccines to attend or remain in school.

The level of the virus RNA “can tell us roughly how many cases can be expected in a population,” says the most recent report on Albany County’s wastewater surveillance. For Albany’s North Plant, the detection level suggests a daily case incidence of 10 to 50 cases per 100,000 people. The same is true for the Bethlehem plant. Albany’s South Plant and Guilderland’s facility each had a detection level suggesting more than 50 cases per 100,000 people, the report says.

ALBANY COUNTY — By Friday afternoon the air quality in Albany County had reached the “unhealthy” level with an index number of 158 because of particulate matter in the air caused by the wildfires in Canada.

Wildfire smoke downwind affects not just health but also wealth and mortality, according to new research from Cornell University, Nanjing University, and the University of Houston, published earlier this month.

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