New York reached another COVID-19 positivity milestone Saturday when the state's seven-day average dropped to the lowest in the entire county, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.
The news comes as New York hits its 68 consecutive day of declining virus rates and more than two weeks of record lows since the start of the pandemic, according to the state.
"We're beating back COVID-19 across the state and New York has the nation's lowest 7-day average positivity rate, but it's going to take more vaccinations to get us across the finish line," Cuomo said in a statement Saturday.
New York's seven-day average positivity has dropped down to 0.44 percent. Cuomo said that figure is the lowest in the U.S., according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.
"The more shots we get in arms, the healthier our state becomes, and that's why we're offering exciting incentives for vaccinations. If New Yorkers who haven't yet gotten the shot do so promptly, we can defeat COVID-19 for good and rebuild our state for a brighter future," his statement concluded.
The rise in inoculations moves the state that much closer to dropping virtually all existing restrictions. The governor announced on Monday that when New York administers at least one vaccine dose to 70% of its adult population, all remaining COVID restrictions will be lifted across commercial and social settings.
That figure has ticked up by nearly a full percentage point since Monday's announcement when the state had given at least one dose to 68.6 percent of adults. As of Saturday, the state was up to 69.5 percent.
Once it reaches that magic number, New York's industry-specific guidelines -- including capacity restrictions, social distancing, cleaning and disinfection, health screening and contact information for tracing -- will be optional for retail, food services, offices, gyms, amusement centers and personal care services, among other businesses.