Because of a significant decline in demand for Covid-19 testing, East Hampton Town’s test site at the former Child Development Center of the Hamptons on Stephen Hand’s Path, operated by CareONE Concierge, has reduced its hours of operation.
Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc announced during the town board’s work session on Tuesday that the test site would be open on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The site had been operating Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The new schedule took effect yesterday, and testing will continue until further notice, Mr. Van Scoyoc said.
The decline in demand for testing tracks with the sharp drop in Covid-19 transmission as the latest surge, driven by the Omicron variant of the virus, falls as rapidly as it rose. Mr. Van Scoyoc recited data to illustrate this decline, but noted that the rate of positive infections has since stabilized.
The positive infection rate reached a staggering 33.17 percent here between Jan. 3 and Jan. 9. It fell to barely half that during the following week, to 17.87 percent, and fell again, this time by more than half, between Jan. 17 and Jan. 23, when the rate was 7 percent.
“Unfortunately, it has plateaued there at 7 percent” in the period from Jan. 24 to Jan. 30, Mr. Van Scoyoc said.
The infection rate has also fallen sharply across Long Island and statewide. Gov. Kathy Hochul’s daily update noted on Tuesday a 92-percent drop in Covid-19 cases in the state since the Jan. 7 peak and a 43-percent drop in Covid-19 hospitalizations since Jan. 12. The positive test rate announced on Tuesday was 5.92 percent statewide, down from 23.17 percent on Jan. 2, and the seven-day average stood at 6.27 percent.
On Long Island, the seven-day average of cases per 100,000 people had fallen to 52.09 on Monday, from a high of 423.4 on Jan. 5. Long Island’s seven-day average of positive cases was 7.58 percent on Monday.
The positive infection rate in Suffolk County was 8.3 percent that day based on 8,221 tested, with a seven-day average of 8.0 percent. As of Tuesday, 4,480 residents of the town had tested positive for Covid-19 infection.
There were 19 Covid-19 patients at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital on Jan. 26, Councilwoman Sylvia Overby said on Tuesday, down from 33 on Jan. 19. Five were in an intensive care unit. At Stony Brook University Hospital, there were 270 Covid-19 patients on Jan. 19, a number that had fallen to 150 on Jan. 26. Forty-nine were in an intensive care unit. There are at present three Covid-19 patients at Eastern Long Island Hospital in Greenport, Ms. Overby said.
East Hampton is continuing to offer vaccination clinics at Town Hall, with sign-up at the town’s website, ehamptonny.gov. Clinics will be held on Monday, next Thursday, Feb. 16, and Feb. 22. Those attending can receive a first, second, or booster dose, and have been asked to have identification, an insurance card, and a vaccination card, if applicable.