Overdue data released on Sunday by the de Blasio administration made the retroactive revelation that the B.1.617 variant, which was first detected in India, has been sequenced from COVID-19 samples in New York City as long back as the first week of April. NYC Mayor's Office (YouTube/Fair Use)

Following an unexplained delay, the de Blasio administration released Coronavirus sequencing data, showing the B.1.617 variant was first detected in New York City in April

The de Blasio administration updated online records about Coronavirus variants on Sunday, but the newly-released trend and cumulative data for various strains don’t add up.

By Progress New York Staff

Updated 17 May 2021 08:50 The Municipal Agency tasked with ensuring public health, NYC Health, released on Sunday a long-awaited update to Coronavirus variants sequencing that revealed, for the first time, the presence in New York City of the B.1.617 strain that appeared to originate in India and that has been ravaging that Asian nation. Not only did the update report, for data pulled from the GISAID database as of May 11, disclose the first cases of the B.1.617 variant in New York City, but the report also made retroactive disclosures, showing that the strain was first detected in COVID-19 cases from sequencing of specimens collected from April 5 – 11.

Notwithstanding the disclosures, the trend data and the cumulative data don’t add up. In the cumulative table, the B.1.617.2 strain showed 12 cases, whereas the trend table showed 16 cases for the most current week. Furthermore, the sample size was the second-lowest and less than half of recent peaks in March, according to the report’s figures. The press office supporting Mayor Bill de Blasio (WFP-New York City) did not immediately answer a media request to offer explanations.

As reported by Progress New York, the de Blasio administration has for several days refused to account for the missing data.

The delayed release of New York City variants also showed that the P.1 strain was detected in 5,9 per cent. of COVID-19 cases.

For the week of April 26-May 2, the P.1 variant, first detected in Brasil in 2020, was observed in 5,9 per cent. of COVID-19 cases, as noted in a social media post. The rate of detection has been steadily increasing since early March. The upward trend in that strain has been happening as New York City residents have increasingly received vaccinations against the Coronavirus.

Separately, the number of cases of the B.1.526 strain subclassified as S:E484K+ plunged from 229 in the May 4 report to 34 in the May 11 report for the week of April 19-25 without explanation. The change was first observed on social media.

As reported by Progress New York, it not known why Mayor de Blasio hasn’t faced a Federal inquiry over apparent violations of open records laws, even when they may be detrimental to public health. The press office supporting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss, whose office would have jurisdiction, have again refused to answer questions submitted in advance for this report.

Audrey Strauss is hanging on — but for what ?

By Progress New York Staff

U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss has stayed on in her post as the top Federal prosecutor in Manhattan, despite President Joseph Biden (D) making a request last February that Trump-era U.S. Attorneys step down, according to a report published by the Washington Post. In March, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) nominated her successor, Damian Williams, but U.S. Attorney Strauss has ignored the steady drum beat of her replacement.

U.S. Attorney Strauss’ Trump-era counterpart in Brooklyn, Seth DuCharme, stepped down in March, despite his office reportedly handling the inquiry into allegations that Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) had obstructed justice by refusing to release Government data about Coronavirus deaths traced to New York State nursing homes. Former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said during an interview granted last week to Slate that actions by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office signaled a serious investigation against former President Donald Trump (R), leaving out any mention of the Manhattan Federal prosecutors’ office. Approximately two weeks ago, the Manhattan Federal prosecutors’ office refused to admit to Progress New York that U.S. Attorney Strauss was remaining in office under the pretexte that she was overseeing important cases against significant Defendants.

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