Why does New York City have so many coronavirus cases?

  • It’s a hugely populated, tightly packed city
  • About 19% of all coronavirus deaths in the U.S. are from New York City
  • New York City residents should continue practicing social distancing

New York City has a population of about 8.4 million, occupying just over 300 square miles. It is one of the most densely populated cities in the U.S. Every normal weekday, 8 million people use public transportation such as buses and trains. As of June 7, the city had more than 211,700 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with more than 21,300 deaths. That’s 10.9% of the total confirmed cases and 19.3% of the deaths in the entire U.S.

Such close quarters means that it is difficult to avoid spreading the coronavirus, even with social distancing measures in place. Enough people came into contact before these measures were made mandatory that the virus got a head start.

What can I do if I live in New York?

Current residents of New York City should continue to stay home if they can, wash their hands whenever possible, and refrain from traveling outside of the city to decrease the rate of infection. The City of New York has a list of resources available to its citizens, such as stress and mental health assistance via NYC Well. 

Residents of New York City who have already traveled to other locations are being asked by the White House to isolate for 14 days to keep the virus from spreading to new places. 

Sources: U.S. Census, New York Times, New York Mag, NYC.gov

Continue Learning