ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo is “cautiously optimistic” that New York is slowing the rate of new coronavirus infections.
Between Thursday and Friday, 777 more New Yorkers died, bringing the total death toll to 7,844.
A quick, non-invasive antibody test is being developed in a state lab, something Cuomo would like to see brought to scale, as he says it could lead New York into the “new normal.”
The Governor acknowledges that there has not been enough testing in the state, and he says he would like to see the federal government take more action that could bring more, faster COVID-19 testing to scale.
New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are offering to partner with the federal government on this. Cuomo says he wants to see a “fair, non-political” stimulus bill.
“What we do will literally affect life and death for hundreds of people,” Cuomo says.
The hospitalization rate appears to be reaching a plateau, and Gov. Cuomo believes social distancing is the reason for it. For the first time since the pandemic started, there are less people in intensive care than there were Thursday morning.
If the new hospitalization rate continues to decrease, with the help of social distancing, Gov. Cuomo believes the “curve” will continue to flatten, putting less strain on hospitals. Right now, there are about 90,000 beds in hospitals across the state.
Previously, hospitals were told to increase their capacity by 50 percent, with a goal of 100 percent.
Recently, Cuomo signed an executive order that allows New York State to move ventilators, masks and gowns from hospitals and other care facilities that don’t need them, and deploy them in places where they’re needed.
To additionally help those fighting the virus on the front lines, Gov. Cuomo announced that AirBnb is spending $2 million to house workers in rooms at union hotels, at no cost to the workers.
Also, similar to the fund established for those impacted by the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Cuomo says he would like to see a “heroes compensation fund” established.
For weeks, the Governor has been making changes to how everyday life operates. On Wednesday, after noting that more people have died due to coronavirus than 9/11, he ordered flags to fly at half-mast in honor of the lives lost to COVID-19.
Schools and non-essential businesses are closed through April 29 due to Cuomo’s New York State on PAUSE order.
Right now, millions of people across the state, and the country in general, are unemployed due to the business closures. The negative financial effect this has had on state residents led the Governor to increase the time period allowed for unemployment to 39 weeks.
In addition, those who filed for unemployment will receive an extra $600 payment from the Federal CARES Act stimulus package to help them through this period. Cuomo expects New York to be reimbursed by the federal government.
For anyone enrolled in SNAP, New York is providing $200 million in emergency food assistance to more than 700,000 low-income households.
Anyone with personal protective equipment or other supplies they would be willing to donate during this pandemic can either call (212) 803-3100 or email email@example.com.
If you wish to utilize the state’s emotional support hotline at this time, call 1-844-863-9314.