NY governor says social distancing slowing coronavirus

Nellie Chapman
March 26, 2020

He said right now, every hospital in the state should have enough PPE, or personal protective equipment, as the state has purchased masks, gloves and gowns, and entered contracts with vendors to buy more.

The rate of hospitalisations in NY state, the epicentre of the USA outbreak, has slowed in recent days, said Governor Andrew Cuomo, with numbers that he called "almost too good to be true". Kirsten Gillibrand on Wednesday, Schumer said almost every New Yorker will likely be touched by the aid package. Nearly 18,000 of those are in New York City, which reported nearly 3,000 new cases, he added.

"It's hard when you live alone to be even more alone, but I think we're lucky to live at a time when friends are within reach on Whatsapp, said Rosa Jimenez-Cano, a 39-year-old Spaniard that has lived in Miami for two years". "We're not looking at a freight train, we're looking at a bullet train". The tone was a considerable change from Tuesday, when Cuomo had fiercely criticized the federal government's response to the pandemic and balked at Trump's suggestion that restarting the economy superseded public health concerns. Additional beds are coming from an array of efforts: hospitals in the state boosting existing capacity; opening new facilities with the help of FEMA and other federal agencies; converting college dormitories to makeshift hospitals; and a U.S. Navy Ship, Comfort, which is en route to the state. It's not just NY.

"The inescapable conclusion is that the rate of infection is going up", Cuomo said at a press conference a day earlier, on Tuesday.

"They have to be following the presidential guidelines", said Birx. "Well, then, act like it's a war". Cuomo made the statement during his daily briefing with reporters on the coronavirus pandemic. "And have more of a rolling deployment across the country than a static deployment".

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When private labs conduct the testing, they are notifying the patient and the county health department, he added. The health department said it could not provide any additional information because of federal privacy laws.

Trump had voiced hope on Tuesday that the country could begin to reopen by Easter but his top infectious disease advisor, Anthony Fauci, said the timetable would need to remain "very flexible". "I would love to have the country opened up and just raring to go by Easter".

After New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said the Big Apple would run out of medical supplies by the end of the week, Cuomo assured residents there were enough to last more than a fortnight. But he suggested the Trump administration was still reluctant to use the Defence Production Act because it believed the private sector could provide ventilators without federal intervention. "Everyone is anxious about their jobs", said Evans, 32, whose restaurant Blue Oak BBQ is a few steps from the renowned Bourbon Street. The companies would be paid for the goods.

"People will say that some of (the restrictions) in place are a burden, and ye, they are burdensome", Cuomo said. Asked if the USA might become the pandemic's new epicentre, World Health Organization spokeswoman Margaret Harris said in Geneva: "We are now seeing a very large acceleration in cases in the USA, so it does have that potential".

As of Wednesday, March 25, there have been 445,753 confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide, which resulted to 19,767 deaths. The state confirmed 30,811 cases and 285 deaths as of Wednesday morning; 12% of cases have required hospitalization.

According to the 2015 report, hospitals would rely on "triage committees", or teams of doctors, to choose which patients would receive ventilator treatment during a shortage, weighing which patients were most at risk and which were most likely to survive treatment.

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