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City Spotlight

Posted on: May 26, 2021

[ARCHIVED] COVID-19 Updates & Information

Covid 19 spotlight -Roll up your sleeve vaccines protect everyone

Updates & Resources regarding COVID-19

 Active/Total Westchester County Covid-19 Cases

Westchester County has created an online dashboard to convey the Active/Total Westchester County COVID-19 Cases. The dashboard is updated regularly by the County.

 Westchester County COVID-19 Dashboard

 New York State Dept. of Health COVID -19 Dashboard

 Center for Disease Control COVID-19 Dashboard

White Plains Hospital Coravirus Covid-19 Information

Gov.  Hochul announced two new state websites that allow New Yorkers to track information on breakthrough infections and new variants of the coronavirus. They can be found at and 

What is the new requirement?

On December 10, 2021, Governor Kathy Hochul announced masks will be required to be worn in all indoor public places unless businesses or venues implement a vaccine requirement. This major action to address the winter surge comes as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rise statewide and is in alignment with the CDC's recommendations for communities with substantial and high transmission. The State Health Commissioner issued a determination solidifying the requirement.       

Does this mean vaccines aren’t working?

No! The State Department of Health has produced nation-leading studies, published in the CDC's MMWR and the New England Journal of Medicine, which demonstrate the COVID-19 vaccines' effectiveness - particularly in preventing severe disease. The Department continues to urge eligible New Yorkers of all ages to get fully vaccinated and boosted as soon as possible. 

So why did the State implement the new requirements?

The new measure brings added layers of mitigation during the holidays when more time is spent indoors shopping, gathering, and visiting holiday-themed destinations. Since Thanksgiving, the statewide seven-day average case rate has increased by 43% and hospitalizations have increased by 29%. While the percentage of New Yorkers fully vaccinated continues to increase—gaining 2% from Thanksgiving weekend to now—the uptick is not fast enough to completely curb the spread of the virus, particularly among communities with low vaccination coverage. 

When do the new requirements go into effect?

The new requirements go into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Monday December 13, 2021 through January 15, 2022, at which time the State will re-evaluate next steps.   Effective 12/31/2021 - the New York Mask mandate has been extended to February 1st, 2022.

Do the new requirements (via the December 10 Commissioner’s Determination) supersede the previous requirements (the August 27 Commissioner’s Determination) on Indoor Masking?

Yes. This determination supersedes the August 27, 2021 determination that required face masks in certain settings such as healthcare settings, schools, correctional facilities and while on public transport or in transportation hubs. These settings are all still covered under the current masking determination.

You can read the State Health Commissioner’s December 10, 2021 Determination Letter.

The CDC recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks in public, indoor settings to help prevent the spread of the Delta variants and protect others. All COVID-19 vaccines authorized for emergency use in the United States have proven extremely effective at preventing serious illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. Those who are unvaccinated have the greatest risk of becoming seriously ill, which is why the New York State Department of Health urges all eligible New Yorkers to get vaccinated as soon as they are able. - Unvaccinated individuals are at greater risk of serius illness from COVID-19.

The Westchester County Department of Health has walk-in vaccination clinic located at 134 Court Street, is open Fridays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information visit (914) 995-5800. 

Homebound seniors can make appointments through the Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services by calling (914) 813-6300. 

You can also visit

 The COVID-19 Vaccine Is Here!  Covid Vaccine best way to protect yourself

COVID-19 Vaccine

                                        UPDATE from the Office of New York State Governor Kathy Hochul: 

                                        Gov. Hochul announces new recommendations on the COVID-19 Booster Shots and  

                                        Booster Shots Now Recommended for 12-15 Year-Olds, Along with Previously Authorized 16+ Age Group

UPDATE: The CDC has recommended the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for 5 – 11 year-olds. Vaccine appointments are available at New York State mass vaccination sites for children ages 5-11. Vaccines are also widely available through your child's pediatrician, family physician, local county health department, FQHC, or pharmacy.  

All individuals 5 years of age and older that reside in the United States are eligible to receive the vaccine. New Yorkers should continue to wear a mask where appropriate and follow all other health guidelines.

FDA fact sheets for recipients and caregivers on each vaccine are available: Pfizer-BioNTech/Cominarty; Moderna; Johnson & Johnson.

COVID vaccines are widely available at pharmacies, local health departments, clinics, Federally Qualified Health Centers and other locations across the state. Visit to find appointments near you or contact your local pharmacy or provider.

To schedule an appointment directly at a New York State-run site, go to New York State's vaccine scheduler and follow the instructions. Walk-in appointments are also accepted at New York State mass vaccination sites for all eligible individuals.



Do COVID-19 vaccines work against “variants of concern” of the virus, including the "Delta" variant?
 All COVID-19 vaccines authorized for emergency use in the United States have proven extremely effective at preventing serious illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. The effectiveness of the FDA-approved vaccines remains strong even against newer strains, including against variants of concern such as the Delta variant identified in India, also known as B.1.617.2. Those who are unvaccinated have the greatest risk of becoming seriously ill, which is why the New York State Department of Health urges all eligible New Yorkers to get vaccinated as soon as they are able.

The vaccines are safe, effective and free.  Walk in to get vaccinated at  pharmacies, hospitals, mass vaccination sites operated by New York State, local health departments, and other providers statewide – please contact your provider of choice to schedule your vaccine appointment, walk-ins are also available. Getting vaccinated will help protect us all by prompting an antibody response without our becoming sick with COVID-19.  if you have yet to get your COVID-19 vaccine, take advantage of one of the numerous incentive programs out there and get your shot today." 

July 30, 2021  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidelines Tuesday July 27, 2021  that recommend indoor-mask mandates even for fully vaccinated people in areas experiencing spikes in COVID-19 cases. In areas with substantial and high transmission, CDC recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks in public, indoor settings to help prevent the spread of the Delta variants and protect others.

June 15, 2021 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that COVID-19 restrictions are lifted immediately as 70 percent of New Yorkers aged 18 or older have received the first dose of their COVID-19 vaccination series. The State's health guidance and New York Forward industry specific guidelines—including social gathering limits, capacity restrictions, social distancing, cleaning and disinfection, health screening, and contact information for tracing—are now optional for retail, food services, offices, gyms and fitness centers, amusement and family entertainment, hair salons, barber shops and personal care services, among other commercial settings. 

Unvaccinated individuals continue to be responsible for wearing masks, in accordance with federal CDC guidance. Consistent with the State's implementation of the recent CDC guidance, masks are still required for unvaccinated individuals. Further, the State's health guidelines continue to be in effect for large-scale indoor event venues, pre-K to grade 12 schools, public transit, homeless shelters, correctional facilities, nursing homes, and health care settings per CDC guidelines.

What We Know:

Key Things to Know about COVID-19 Vaccines

Center for Disease Control :  Vaccine Effectiveness

  • All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States are effective at preventing COVID-19 as seen in clinical trial settings.
  • COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death.
  • COVID-19 vaccines reduce the risk of people spreading COVID-19.

How the vaccine works: 

Vaccines help our immune system fight infections in the future. The COVID-19 vaccine will protect us from the virus that causes COVID-19 without having to get the illness. 

The vaccine will help protect you by teaching your body how to recognize and fight the virus. The vaccine can help keep you from getting COVID-19, but even if you do get the virus, it can keep you from getting very sick.

Two approved COVID-19 vaccines, one from Moderna and one from Pfizer – are given in two doses, about three weeks apart. You need both doses to be fully protected. A third vaccine – Johnson & Johnson – requires only a single dose to be protected. 

It takes a few weeks after the second dose to become fully protected. You may have a sore arm, aches, fatigue, or fever for a few days after getting the vaccine. These symptoms are a sign that your immune system is learning how to protect you from the virus.

Ensuring the vaccine is safe

COVID-19 vaccines are made by three companies: Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen. These vaccines were authorized by the Federal Food and Drug Administration only after they were shown to be safe and effective in studies (called clinical trials). 

 The U.S. ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Learn how the federal government is working to ensure the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.

FDA fact sheets on each vaccine are available: 



 Johnson & Johnson

The CDC explains  Evaluating COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness in the Real World




The COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline is open 7AM - 10PM, 7 days week, to help New Yorkers determine if they are eligible and schedule vaccination appointments.

The federal government is providing the vaccine free of charge to all people living in the United States, regardless of their immigration or health insurance status.

COVID-19 vaccination providers CANNOT: 

* Charge you for the vaccine

* Charge you directly for any administration fees, copays, coinsurance, or the balance of the bill after appropriate reimbursement

* Deny vaccination to anyone who does not have health insurance coverage, is underinsured, or is out of network

* Charge an office visit or other fee to the recipient if the only service provided is a COVID-19 vaccination

* Require additional services in order for a person to receive a COVID-19 vaccine; however, additional healthcare services can be provided at the same time and billed as appropriate

Vaccinations for Homebound Residents

 In-Home Vaccination

Vaccinating all New Yorkers is essential to restarting our economy and defeating this virus once and for all. But not everyone is able to travel to one of the many sites that are offering COVID-19 vaccines.

New York State, in partnership with counties, established local points of contact to expand access to vaccines through an in-home vaccination program for those who are homebound due to physical limitations, cognitive impairment, other chronic conditions, a lack of transportation, and/or visual impairments, and who do not have access to supports that may help them physically go to an existing vaccination provider.

The Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services (DSPS) has announced additional availability of the COVID-19 vaccine for those who are homebound. Any homebound individual, of any age, is eligible to receive the vaccine if you live in Westchester. Caregivers for the homebound are also eligible. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, DSPS has vaccinated over 3,000 homebound individuals across the County.

 Westchester County Executive George Latimer said: “Getting the vaccine is the one thing we all can do to protect ourselves and help stop the spread of COVID-19. 

 To make an appointment, reach out to DSPS at 914-813-6300. If all information specialists are on the phone assisting other callers, please leave a message and your call will be returned immediately. The Westchester County Department of Health, in coordination with Empress EMS Services, has been vaccinating the homebound throughout Westchester County.

Westchester County,   (914) 813-6300, 8:30 am – 4:30 pm;

 Westchester County is providing Free ParaTransit Transportation for Seniors and Constituents with Disabilities

Westchester County Executive Latimer is offering senior and disabled constituents, who are not registered with ParaTransit, free transportation to receive their vaccinations. Call ParaTransit reservations at (914) 995-7272 24 hours prior to your vaccination date. For additional questions, send an e-mail to Evan Latainer, Director of the Office for People with Disabilities, at

See how many New Yorkers have been vaccinated 

The COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker: Vaccination Progress To Date dashboard shows all vaccinated individuals according to their county of residence. Residency is self-reported by the individual being vaccinated.

Governor Cuomo's Daily Updates  

What We Know

COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death.

COVID-19 vaccines reduce the risk of people spreading COVID-19.

 What We’re Still Learning

How effective the vaccines are against variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Early data show the vaccines may work against some variants but could be less effective against others.

How well the vaccines protect people with weakened immune systems, including people who take immunosuppressive medications.

How long COVID-19 vaccines can protect people.

As we know more, CDC will continue to update recommendations for both vaccinated and unvaccinated people.

About COVID-19 Vaccine Delivered and Administration Data

Summary of Vaccination Data

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is using both new and existing information technology (IT) systems to rapidly collect reliable data about how many doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered (distribution) and how many people have been vaccinated with those doses (administration).

CDC; other Federal agencies; vaccination providers; state, local, and territorial public health departments; and tribal health facilities across the country use vaccine distribution and administration data to inform decisions about COVID-19 vaccination. The COVID-19 Vaccination IT Overview provides an overarching view of the vaccine IT data systems and how they integrate to track COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration.

CDC publicly reports the number of COVID-19 vaccine doses delivered and administered, as well as vaccine trends and demographic data, through the COVID Data Tracker.

Vaccine Hesitancy 

Millions of people in the United States have received COVID-19 vaccines under the most intense safety monitoring in U.S. history.

CDC recommends you get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as you can

White Plains Mayor Tom Roach, Isabel Villar of El Centro Hispano and Sunshine Pharmacy, Pharmacist address issues relating to the Covid 19 vaccine .

Ensuring COVID-19 Vaccine Safety in the US. 

The Center for Disease Control Vaccine Safety and Monitoring reports:

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. 

LoHud Some are Hesitant to receive the COVID 19 vaccination

White Plains Hospital Covid 19 Fact vs Fiction

Medical experts are strongly urging everyone to get the vaccine as soon as they are eligible, for the protection of themselves, their loved ones, and their neighbors.

We know there are still a lot of questions about the new Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, and here we dispel some common myths:

White Plains Hopsital COVID 19 Vaccine Facts

FICTION: The vaccines are not effective.

FACT: Clinical studies have shown the vaccines are safe and effective. The Pfizer vaccine, which requires two injections 21 days apart, has an efficacy rate of 95%. The Moderna vaccine, which requires two shots 28 days apart, has been shown to be 94% effective.

FICTION: The COVID-19 vaccines have severe side effects.

FACT: According to the CDC serious side effects are very rare, in fact it is at the same rate as the annual influenza vaccine.

FICTION: The vaccine will give me COVID-19.

FACT: Neither the Pfizer nor Moderna vaccines contain the live viruses that cause COVID-19, so you will not get COVID-19 from getting vaccinated. In fact, the vaccine will initiate a response that will cause your body to start making antibodies that will help you build up an immunity to the virus.

FICTION: I’ve already had COVID-19, so I don’t need the vaccine.

FACT: There’s no guarantee you’ll be protected if you’ve already had COVID-19, and it’s not clear how long any immunity could last. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people who have had COVID-19 get vaccinated because reinfection is possible.

FICTION: I can stop following safety precautions after I get vaccinated.

FACT: No. Health experts want to be sure how long the vaccine’s immunity will last before recommending easing safety precautions. You should still wear a mask, wash your hands, and practice social distancing to protect anyone you come in contact with.

For up-to-date information, please visit White Plains Hospital’s Vaccine Resource page.


 What Can I Do After I Have Been Fully Vaccinated?

When You’ve Been Fully Vaccinated; How to Protect Yourself and Others

If you are fully vaccinated, you can resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic.

Fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

If you’ve been fully vaccinated:

You can resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic.

You can resume activities without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

If you travel in the United States, you do not need to get tested before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel.

You need to pay close attention to the situation at your international destination before traveling outside the United States.

You do NOT need to get tested before leaving the United States unless your destination requires it.

You still need to show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding an international flight to the United States.

You should still get tested 3-5 days after international travel.

You do NOT need to self-quarantine after arriving in the United States.

If you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19, you do not need to stay away from others or get tested unless you have symptoms.


 Have You Been Fully Vaccinated?

In general, people are considered fully vaccinated: 

2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or

2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine

If you don’t meet these requirements, regardless of your age, you are NOT fully vaccinated. Keep taking all precautions until you are fully vaccinated.

If you have a condition or are taking medications that weaken your immune system, you may NOT be fully protected even if you are fully vaccinated. Talk to your healthcare provider. Even after vaccination, you may need to continue taking all precautions.

New York State Excelsior Program ; Be a Part of New York's Safe Reopening

Excelsior Pass provides a free, fast and secure way to present digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results.


Get Back to Your Favorite Businesses and Venues with Digital Proof of Your COVID-19 Vaccination or Negative Test Results.

Attend sporting events, arts performances and more! Excelsior Pass supports a safe reopening of New York by providing a free, fast and secure way to present digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results. Think of it as a mobile airline boarding pass, but for proving you received a COVID-19 vaccination or negative test.

You can store your Pass digitally on your smartphone with the Excelsior Pass Wallet app, available for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. You can also print your Pass from the Excelsior Pass website and bring it with you.

Businesses and venues can scan and validate your pass to ensure you meet any COVID-19 vaccination or testing requirements for entry. Along with your Pass, you’ll be asked to show a photo ID that shows your name and birth date to verify that the Pass belongs to you. Adults may hold passes for accompanying minors.

Once you and your party enter an establishment, you will still be asked to follow State and CDC guidance regarding social distancing, face coverings and hand hygiene.

Participation in Excelsior Pass is voluntary. New Yorkers can always show alternate proof of vaccination or testing, like another mobile application or paper form, directly at a business or venue.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announces that COVID-19 restrictions are lifted immediately as 70 percent of New Yorkers aged 18 or older have received the first dose of their COVID-19 vaccination series.

NYS Masks Requirements

Governor Cuomo Announces significant easing of pandemic restrictions on businesses, gatherings and venues

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo  statement on lifting the curfew on indoor dining

Social Distance-based Business Capacities

What’s Open in White Plains? 

All City of White Plains Departments are open with COVID rules in effect.

The White Plains Public Library  has opened with COVID rules in effect

White Plains Parks and Playgrounds are open with COVID rules in effect.

The White Plains Farmers Market is open Wednesdays from 8:30 AM – 3:30 PM on Court Street between Main Street and Martine Avenue.

The Westchester Mall, The City Center  and The Galleria Mall  are open with COVID rules in effect.

White Plains restaurants  offer eat-in, outside dining and take-out options 

To view a list of Downtown White Plains Shops and Businesses

The Westchester County Bee-Line bus Westchester County Department of Transportation

 Metro North  has resumed  full service 

New York State Department of Motor Vehicles   White Plains District Office - Currently OPEN for mail-in and drop box processing and for limited in-person transactions by reservation only, You MUST have a reservation to complete in-person transactions at a DMV office.

Westchester County 

 White Plains City Schools

White Plains City Courts

White Plains Performing Arts Center


 City of White Plains Meetings:

White Plains Common Council meetings are held live with Covid -19 protocols in place.

We're all in this together.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has left many New Yorkers feeling anxious and stressed.  The New York State Office of Mental Health offers these resources: COVID-19 Resources

NY Project Hope is New York’s COVID-19 Emotional Support Helpline.

NY Project Hope helps New Yorkers understand their reactions and emotions during COVID-19. Through an emotional support helpline, educational materials, and trusted referrals, NY Project Hope helps people manage and cope with changes brought on by COVID-19.

NY Project Hope Crisis Counselors understand what you are going through. Talking to them is free, confidential, and anonymous. Talk to someone who is trained, knowledgeable and never judges. Sometimes it helps to talk with someone you don’t know.  Emotional Support Helpline: 1 844 863 9314.

White Plains COVID Angels  914 422 1378

White Plains Public Library; Documenting COVID-19

We're living in unprecedented times. Many of us are working from home and adapting to shared living spaces, childcare demands, social isolation. Others have had health challenges or find themselves unemployed.

Meanwhile, we hear examples of adaptation and education, creativity and bravery. Our lives have continued in new ways.

For these reasons, the Library—with your help—is creating a new collection: Documenting COVID-19: White Plains Experiences.

We want to hear about you, what you're doing, how you're doing, what you see outside your window. Contributions can be anything, from a three-line poem to a 200-page diary, from a photograph to an oil painting.

Documenting COVID-19: White Plains Experiences will remain a part of the Library's White Plains Collection and will be available for future students, researchers, and writers who seek to understand life in White Plains during this pandemic.

For more information,  Brian Kenney, Library Director or Kristy Bauman, Programming Librarian,

ArtsWestchester  - Together ApART

COVID-19 has profoundly changed the contours of our daily lives. At this time of great loss and physical distancing, many of us have turned to creative outlets to help us cope, express our anguish, and gain agency when we feel helpless. “Together apART: Creating During COVID” features more than 250 works of painting, photography, sculpture, sewing, crafting, songwriting, poetry and other creative activities by 224 artists and community members from throughout the Hudson Valley. All of the exhibited works were made between March 2020 and March 2021.


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