TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—Two more people have reportedly died from COVID-19, according to the Tompkins County Health Department. As a new winter wave of positive cases crests, Tompkins County has now had 41 people die from the illness since the pandemic began.

Active cases continue to rise, as there are now 411 active cases of COVID-19 in Tompkins County amid a week of daily positive test numbers that have been quite high. However, despite that, hospitalizations have remained low: there are 10 people hospitalized currently with COVID-19, the first time that number has reached double digits since early October.

The county did not immediately announce the vaccinated status of the two people who died, though officials have been more explanatory in presentations to the Tompkins County Legislature regarding the vaccination status of individuals who are hospitalized or deceased.

Fueling at least some of the high positive test numbers is Cornell’s student population, which had a surprisingly high 58 positive tests reported yesterday (Clarification: 53 positives were among students, five additional tests were among faculty and staff members). Despite that, the school’s alert level remained at green, while Ithaca College’s raised to yellow yesterday.

There has not been any announcement that the Omicron variant of the coronavirus has been detected in any of the recent positive tests.

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Managing Editor at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at