This is our daily update of breaking COVID-19 news for Saturday, December 12th, 2020. Previous daily updates can be found here, and up-to-date statistics are here.

New York City is in Phase 4 of reopening now, which includes zoos, botanical gardens, museums, and gyms, as well as 25% indoor dining. After being shut down for several weeks, NYC public schools began to partially reopen on December 7th for 3K-5th grade students, with students with special needs returning on December 10th. Certain parts of Staten Island remain under a zoned shutdown.

Get answers to questions you may have with our "Ask An Epidemiologist" series, or learn more about NYC COVID-19 testing options with our explainer. Here are some local and state hotlines for more information: NYC: 311; NY State Hotline: 888-364-3065; NJ State Hotline: 800-222-1222.

Here's the latest:

Warning COVID-19 resurgence "could get worse because it gets better," Governor Andrew Cuomo implored the federal government to dispatch the necessary resources to the state in hopes of administering the long-awaited vaccine.

Cuomo's warning comes as the state is seeing a continued rise in the number of COVID-19 deaths, with 95 people having died from the virus on Friday, according to a press release from Cuomo's office on Saturday.

New York State hasn't seen the daily number of deaths in the triple digits since May 24th, the last time the state reported more than 100 COVID-19 deaths in one day.

"COVID cases are continuing to climb nationwide and with the holiday season in full swing, it could get worse before it gets better," Cuomo said. 

The state reported the highest number of COVID-19 tests performed to date, with 242,927 tests administered since testing for the virus began during the pandemic. The daily positivity rate for COVID-19 was 4.58%, according to the state Health Department. Across the hospital system, 5,359 people have now been admitted to the hospital for COVID-19, with 1,029 patients in the ICU, and 563 patients on ventilators.

The vaccine to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is now in reach after the Food and Drug Administration approved emergency use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine on Friday, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also approving its use on Saturday.

New York State is expected to receive 170,000 vaccines. New York City hospitals are poised to get shipments of the two-dose shots sometime Monday morning, according to the NY Post.

Getting the vaccine into the arms of millions of people is the next step, and Cuomo said it's incumbent upon the federal government to provide assistance.

"The federal government must do its job and provide resources to state and local governments to equitably administer the vaccine and provide badly needed support for businesses and the unemployed," he said.

A handout photo from Pfizer showing vials of the coronavirus vaccine

FDA Says Vaccine Centers Prepared To Handle Allergic Reactions To COVID-19 Shot

12:20 p.m.: Officials with the Food and Drug Administration said health workers administering the COVID-19 vaccine will have treatment options available at vaccination centers in case there are allergic reactions.

At a news conference on Saturday, FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn and Dr. Stephen Marks, the FDA's director Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said anyone with allergic reactions from the vaccine can be treated with a variety of medications, including epinephrine, Benadryl, or a cortisone shot. The treatment comes after two healthcare workers in England experienced allergic reactions after taking the vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is helping to administer the shots.

"They will make sure those are available at sites giving the vaccine. They're basic equipment to have. And the idea that'll be able to be present at all the sites in order to take care of potential issues. Hopefully, it will just be there as a safety precaution," Dr. Marks told reporters at the virtual news conference.

The FDA approved emergency use authorization for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine late Friday night, clearing the way for 2.9 million doses to be delivered to states and cities across the country. The U.S. is now the sixth country, after the United Kingdom, Bahrain, Canada, Saudi Arabia, and Mexico, to have a vaccine rolled out for distribution. The shot will be available to anyone age 16 and up. Marks said the shot is safe for teens.

New York state is expected to receive a total of 170,000 doses—which will provide the first shots of the two-dose vaccine—as soon as this weekend, kickstarting the logistical distribution of the vaccine. New York City has already prepared to receive the vaccine, with Mayor Bill de Blasio announcing the creation of a vaccine command center that's expected to be activated on Monday.

Health workers deemed high risk and nursing home residents and staffers will be the first to receive the shots, followed by essential workers in the next phase. CVS and Walgreens are among the pharmacy chains that will administer shots in nursing homes as part of a federal program to get the vaccine into the arms of vulnerable New Yorkers, beginning December 21st, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The approval came as reports surfaced that Hahn was under pressure by the White House to expedite the approval for Pfizer's vaccine. During the news conference on Saturday, Hahn denied the reports, calling them inaccurate.