Five states including Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Maryland and Montana have been removed from New York’s travel quarantine list.
New Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday that travelers arriving to New York from those five states no longer have to quarantine for 14 days.
Guam has been added to the list.
There are 28 states now on the mandatory quarantine list, as well as Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
The quarantine order is part of a joint travel advisory with New Jersey and Connecticut to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in the tri-state area.
The restrictions are placed on a state or region if the seven-day rolling average of positive tests exceeds 10 per cent, or if the number of positive cases exceeds 10 per 100,000 residents.
Cuomo, a Democrat, started the travel ban list back in June as Sunbelt states started to see spikes in coronavirus infections as the pace of the outbreak started to accelerate.
New York, which was the initial epicenter of the US outbreak, has maintained lower infection and deaths rates since hitting its peak in April.
‘New Yorkers made enormous sacrifices to get our numbers as low as they are today, and we don’t want to give up an inch of that hard-earned progress,’ Cuomo said.
‘That’s why these travel advisory precautions are so important – we don’t want people who travel to states with high community spread to bring the virus back here.
‘While it’s good news that five states have been removed from the travel advisory, the list remains far too long as America continues to struggle with COVID-19.
‘New Yorkers should stay vigilant and be careful – wear a mask, socially distance, and be smart. This pandemic is not over.’
Cuomo said that of the 67,255 tests reported on Monday, 629 were positive – meaning New York has a positive test rate 0.94 percent.
Total hospitalizations across the state were at 488 as of Tuesday.
It comes as national coronavirus cases across the US declined for the fifth straight week as the country averaged just over 42,000 new infections a day for the first time since late June.
Meanwhile, national deaths are now also declining having dropped below an average of 1,000 per day for the first time in a month.
The average number of fatalities due to COVID-19 was at 972 as of Monday.
Deaths, which had been plateauing nationally for about three weeks, are a lagging indicator and can potentially rise several weeks after new cases start to decline.
While still high, the current daily death rate in the US remains below levels seen in April when an average of 2,000 people were dying per day from COVID-19.
Coronavirus infections in the US have now topped 5.7 million and more than 177,000 have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic started.
The month-long national decline in cases is due mainly to the significant drop off in the hotspot states of California, Arizona, Florida and Texas after infections peaked there in mid-July.