Blood sample tube positive with COVID-19 or novel coronavirus 2019 found in Wuhan, China

Progress has been made in tamping down a spike in coronavirus cases in the Five Towns area, Nassau County officials said Tuesday while opening a new drive-through COVID-19 rapid test site in the community.

The infection rate in Lawrence and Inwood has dropped from up to seven times to four times higher than the county-wide average of about 1 percent, although there has been a slight uptick in cases in Woodmere, officials said.

“This is a little bit of a troubling spot,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran told reporters during while announcing the debut of the new drive-through test site at the Five Towns Community Center in a partnership with Mount Sinai South Nassau hospital in Oceanside.

Parts of the Five Towns have been included in the New York State Cluster Action Initiative aimed at containing COVID-19 hot spots in Brooklyn, Rockland, and Orange counties, which face the strictest rules and have been marked as red zones by health officials.

Buffer zones around the targeted communities bleed across the New York City line into southwestern Nassau, with less stringent orders in orange zones such as parts of Lawrence and Inwood, and yellow zones like Cedarhurst. The zones are subject to change as the hot spot infection rates are updated.

“We’re heading in the right direction,” said Nassau Health Commissioner Dr. Lawrence Eisenstein, noting that rates have reached a plateau. “We want to get the transmission rate here below what it is now.”

Related Story: NY Limits Activity in Lawrence, Inwood Amid COVID-19 Hot Spot Response

Related Story: COVID-19 Hospitalization Uptick Eyed on Long Island

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Timothy Bolger is the Editor in Chief of the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.