BUFFALO, N.Y. — Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz confirmed Monday that eight residents in the county have died from coronavirus (COVID-19).
As of Monday night, the county has 463 positive cases of COVID-19, with 402 people in isolation and 53 people who have recovered. Poloncarz says 1,094 people are in quarantine, adding that 302 people have completed quarantine.
Being "recovered" is being defined as at least seven days since the onset of illness, with the last three days of the illness is feeling better, and being fever free without taking fever reducers. Any essential employee returning to work after being deemed recovered will have to wear a mask for a week while at work.
Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein emphasized that while the three most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough, and shortness of breath, people with the illness have also experienced fatigue or loss of smell/taste. They also may not present all three of the most common symptoms.
Burstein also advised people that are self-isolating to stay in one room of the house, and if you need to go to a hospital or doctor, you should call ahead.
Poloncarz says he does not expect the county to hit its peak of cases until the end of April, although he hopes it is sooner.
There are currently no FDA approved over-the-counter or prescription medications to treat COVID-19, and there is currently no vaccine for the virus.
The FDA did approve emergency use of two anti-malarial drugs on COVID-19 patients
All major pharmacy chains in New York State are going to offer free home delivery of medication to reduce lines and visitors to the pharmacy.
Erie County has received masks, face shields, gowns, and gloves from the New York State Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. Hospitals will receive 50% of the shipment, senior homes/nursing facilities will receive 25%, first responders will receive 15%, and 10% will go to "other" organizations.
The Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, which provides nutrition to pregnant women, new mothers, and children. Newly unemployed people may now be eligible for this program and can apply for it through Catholic Charities.
Burstein again addressed face masks, explaining that surgical masks are not fully protective, but can reduce the risk of illness.
The number of confirmed cases in Erie County communities include:
- 183 cases in Buffalo
- 83 in Amherst/Williamsville
- 28 in Cheektowaga/Sloan
- 27 in Hamburg/Blasdell
- 23 in West Seneca
- 19 in Clarence
- 18 in Tonawanda/Kenmore
- 16 in Orchard Park/Village
- 12 in Lancaster/Village
- 11 in Aurora/East Aurora
- 8 in Grand Island
- 7 in Alden/Village
- 7 in Elma
- 4 in Evans/Angola
- 4 in North Collins/Village
- 4 in Lackawanna
- 3 in City of Tonawanda
- 1 in Marilla
- 1 in Colden
- 1 in Holland
- 1 in Eden
- 1 in Concord/Springville
- 1 in Newstead/Akron