Erie County is worried about the hospital space across Buffalo and the county as a whole. There has been a heavy spike in COVID-19 the last several weeks, as the Western New York region is above 10 percent daily positivity rate.

Erie County hospitals had 363 COVID-19 patients on Monday, November 29th, according to information provided by Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz on Wednesday.

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66 of those patients were in the Intensive Care Unit, while 46 had airway assist. 53 percent of those total patients were 64 years of age or under.

Poloncarz also announced that three Buffalo hospitals were at 100 percent capacity, per the hospitalization report that was provided by New York State to the Erie County Department of Health.

Those hospitals at 100 percent capacity are ECMC, Mercy Hospital in South Buffalo, and Sisters of Charity Hospital.

This is due to the recent spike in COVID-19 that has swept through Erie County and much of the state as well.

This past Tuesday, Poloncarz issued a county-wide mask mandate. All individuals over the age of 2 must wear a mask inside all indoor public buildings, except those businesses and establishments that have strict vaccine requirements.

This is part of a four-phase plan put in place by Poloncarz and Erie County. Phase two would require vaccine mandates for building entry. Phase three would be reduced capacity. Phase four would see more shutdowns.

Poloncarz says they will re-asses the situation on December 13th and whether or not to move forward to phase two, or remove mask mandates. Hospitalizations would be the deciding factor in that.

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