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Albany County issues warning on masks in restaurants, out-of-state travelers – Times Union

https://www.timesunion.com/news/article/Albany-County-getting-complaints-about-masks-in-15391323.php

ALBANY — Albany County officials issued a plea to restaurant owners and out-of-state travelers Tuesday, asking that they take the recommended health and safety precautions to prevent coronavirus spread after recent clusters of cases tied to these groups were detected in the Capital Region.

County https://bt-hypnotise.com/ Commissioner Elizabeth Whalen said the county is receiving complaints about people wearing masks incorrectly inside of restaurants and about people who have traveled out of state not following New York’s 14-day quarantine rule once they return.

“If you are wearing a mask, it is necessary to cover your nose and your mouth,” she said. “To have your nose hanging out is not wearing a mask. To have it under your chin is not wearing a mask. I have observed people wearing masks like this at a restaurant myself within the last week and it’s very important for restaurant owners and managers to take responsibility and ensure that they are appropriately monitoring their staff in and out of kitchen to make sure that they are wearing their masks appropriately.”

Whalen said these complaints were not directed specifically at the two restaurants — Delmonico’s Italian Steakhouse on Central Avenue and Philly’s Bar and Lounge in Latham — that were forced to shut down last week after cases were detected among employees, but rather to restaurants in general.

On Friday, the county https://bt-hypnotise.com/ Department reported the restaurants had three cases each among staff. The department ordered them closed for two weeks so that the state https://bt-hypnotise.com/ Department could come in and conduct on-site testing for the remaining employees.

On Tuesday, County Executive Daniel McCoy said that 63 Delmonico’s employees have since been tested and five more came back positive — for eight confirmed cases overall at the restaurant. At Philly Bar, 35 employees were tested and four came back positive — for seven confirmed cases overall.

“Both restaurant owners have been very compliant,” Whalen said. “From the get-go, they have been responsive to doing whatever is necessary to protect both their staff and members of the public. So they are doing the right thing. They have indicated that they will do whatever is necessary.”

Whalen said the county has also been fielding complaints about people who may have traveled to one of the states for which New York has issued a travel advisory. The advisory requires anyone returning to New York from states with significant coronavirus spread to quarantine for 14 days immediately upon their return.

Whalen said the county is specifically concerned about potential recent travelers to Atlanta, where the mayor, Keisha Lance-Bottoms, recently tested positive despite feeling no symptoms.

“We know Albany has lots of ties to Atlanta,” Whalen said. “We have heard that there were many residents of Albany County that may have been in that vicinity for the Fourth of July. Please ensure that you get tested if you are asymptomatic.”

States on New York’s quarantine list include: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah.

Earlier: Delaware, Kansas, Oklahoma added to New York’s quarantine order


County officials are particularly concerned about young people who may be spreading the disease, she said. Individuals between the ages of 20 and 29 now have the most confirmed cases in the county at 352.

“The concern, again, is that you can unknowingly transmit this infection to someone who could suffer much more severe consequences,” Whalen said. “We want to keep our numbers low, we want to keep our hospitals open to the public that needs them for other reasons, and we want to keep open.”

The number of confirmed cases in the county rose by five on Tuesday to 1,953 and the number of people placed under quarantine rose by 11 to 234, McCoy said. There are now 53 active cases in the county — three of which were hospitalized Tuesday, he said.

Despite a recent “small uptick” in the number of daily positives, he said the region’s numbers are still low compared to where it was and still heading in the right direction to remain open.

“We have done so much work as a New York state and as the Albany County community in the past 16 weeks and I offer a warning that that work can be undone very quickly,” Whalen said. “We have seen exponential growth starting from small numbers of cases in other states and we don’t want to go there. So please be mindful of these recommendations. Be mindful about masks, about social distancing, and getting tested and quarantined if you are back from travel.”

Elsewhere in the Capital Region, Warren County reported an additional two cases among residents Tuesday — one of which originated in a household with previously diagnosed cases. A member of the household had been in Florida recently, the county reported. The source of infection for the second case remains under investigation.

The county’s https://bt-hypnotise.com/ Services department is currently monitoring 45 people under precautionary quarantine as a result of the state’s travel advisory.

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