COVID-19 Outbreak - New York City, February 29-June 1, 2020

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2020 Nov 20;69(46):1725-1729. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6946a2.


New York City (NYC) was an epicenter of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak in the United States during spring 2020 (1). During March-May 2020, approximately 203,000 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases were reported to the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). To obtain more complete data, DOHMH used supplementary information sources and relied on direct data importation and matching of patient identifiers for data on hospitalization status, the occurrence of death, race/ethnicity, and presence of underlying medical conditions. The highest rates of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths were concentrated in communities of color, high-poverty areas, and among persons aged ≥75 years or with underlying conditions. The crude fatality rate was 9.2% overall and 32.1% among hospitalized patients. Using these data to prevent additional infections among NYC residents during subsequent waves of the pandemic, particularly among those at highest risk for hospitalization and death, is critical. Mitigating COVID-19 transmission among vulnerable groups at high risk for hospitalization and death is an urgent priority. Similar to NYC, other jurisdictions might find the use of supplementary information sources valuable in their efforts to prevent COVID-19 infections.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Betacoronavirus / isolation & purification
  • COVID-19
  • COVID-19 Testing
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques
  • Coronavirus Infections / diagnosis
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Coronavirus Infections / mortality
  • Coronavirus Infections / therapy
  • Disease Outbreaks*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • New York City / epidemiology
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / diagnosis
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / mortality
  • Pneumonia, Viral / therapy
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Young Adult