Grim milestone as NY coronavirus cases climb past 500,000

FILE - A medical personnel member takes samples on a woman at a "drive-thru" coronavirus testing lab.

The number of coronavirus cases throughout the State of New York has climbed past the half-million mark, announced Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

With 2,031 new cases reported Tuesday, the total number of people infected with the potentially deadly virus since the outbreak stood at 500,677.

Speaking during a teleconference with reporters on Wednesday, Cuomo said there were 1,085 people hospitalized with COVID-19 and 15 new deaths had been reported.

The state is trying to contain the spread of the virus as cases tick upward in certain hot spots. Cuomo instated new restrictions in parts of Brooklyn, Queens, Rockland, Orange and Broome counties. Last week, some of those restrictions were eased for Brooklyn and Queens.

The state's Southern Tier region — which borders Pennsylvania and is home to over 800,00 residents — is seeing its largest outbreak of the pandemic, though one that is still modest compared to the crisis in the New York City metro area in the spring.

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