ALBANY, N.Y. – The majority of New York’s more than 4,700 deaths due to coronavirus were among men, and 86% of all deaths were among people who had underlying illnesses, such as hypertension and diabetes, new state data shows.
The statistics released late Monday offered the latest glimpse into how the rapidly spreading virus has impacted New York and made it the epicenter for COVID-19 in the nation.
Of the 4,758 deaths in New York since the first on March 14, 61% were men and 39% were women, the state Department of Health reportedon its new data portal.
In addition, 63% of the deaths were among those age 70 and older, while 7% of the cases were those 49 and younger.
And 4,089 of those who died had at least one other chronic disease, the records showed:
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New York started to release more details about coronavirus cases just hours after a USA TODAY Network article on Friday sourced experts who said the state should release as many details as possible to help the public understand the virus and their risks.
The goal, state officials said, is to continue to add more data to the portal, including the race of those who died amid reports that people of color are being hit the hardest by the virus.
Health experts and government officials have long warned that the virus preys on the elderly and those with preexisting health conditions.
"The undeniable truth here is that this virus is a deadly enemy, and we will lose and we are losing people who are vulnerable to the virus," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday.
"That can't be controlled, that can't be fixed. Why? That's Mother Nature, that's a question God can only answer. But, control what you can. Do what you can."
Cuomo said the state has tried to limit deaths by ensuring the sick have access to ventilators and medical equipment, even as the state runs perilously low of its inventory.
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On Monday, New York had more than130,000 positive COVID-19 cases, with about 93% of those in New York City and its suburbs — in part due to the rapid spread of the illness there and aggressive testing.
Overall, the state has tested about 321,000 people, so about 59% have tested negative.
About 300 of the deaths occurred outside the city, Long Island and Westchester and Rockland counties, the statistics showed.
The death toll statewide jumped by 600 between Sunday and Monday, giving New York 46% of the roughly 10,250 fatalities in the nation.
But Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio indicated Monday that while the deaths are still rising, they may have begun to plateau as the rate has stayed consistent recent days and the number of hospitalizations have fallen.
"For the first time, I would say the city's seeing this, the state is seeing this, the beginning of some evidence that something's changing," de Blasio said Monday on NY1.
Follow Joseph Spector on Twitter: @GannettAlbany