A patient arrives in an ambulance at a hospital on Long Island during the coronavirus pandemic. (Long Island Press photo)

Long Island coronavirus cases appear to be on the decline, suggesting that the region may no longer be on the plateau that had been testing the limits of its healthcare system, officials say.

Officials in Nassau and Suffolk counties say they’ve seen the number of patients being hospitalized for COVID-19 decline in the past week.

“For a full week we’ve seen declines in the number of covid patients in our hospitals,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said Wednesday.

Curran said coronavirus hospitalizations in Nassau are down 20 percent over the past seven days to 1,966. Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said COVID-19 hospitalizations in the county are below 1,400 for the first time in four weeks. Both county executives said the number of patients in intensive care units are also down.

“We have seen a downward trend over the last week,” Bellone said Wednesday, noting that the exception to the trend was a one-day increase he reported Monday.

The development comes as coronavirus cases on the Island rose to 60,408, with 31,355 in Nassau and 28,854 in Suffolk. There were 257,216 cases statewide, 830,789 nationwide, and 2.6 million worldwide. COVID-19 fatalities rose to 2,357 on LI — 1,431 in Nassau, 926 in Suffolk — 15,302 statewide, 45,638 nationwide, and 180,784 worldwide.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the downward trend for LI’s coronavirus hospitalizations appears to be a region-wide phenomenon, but cautioned that social-distancing mandates must remain in place for now to keep the virus from rebounding.

“In downstate New York, the curve is on the descent, the question is now how long is that descent?” the governor said Wednesday. “Is it a sudden drop off? Is it one week, two weeks, three weeks, six weeks? We dont know, but better to be going down than to be going up.”

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