Gov. Cuomo looks toward “re-opening” New York, but the time frame is uncertain

Around New York State

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — The death toll from COVID-19 in New York has reached 10,056, and so far, more than 195,000 cases have been confirmed in the state.

As these numbers rise, the number of people in hospitals has remained relatively flat, staying in the neighborhood of 18,000 in recent days.

Roughly 2,000 people are entering New York hospitals each day to be treated for the coronavirus, but on a positive note, more people are being discharged.

During his daily briefing on Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo was questioned about whether Buffalo, and Erie County in general, would be considered a “hot spot” for COVID-19 cases right now.

Cuomo would not refer to any specific region as a “hot spot,” due to lack of specifics on what that constitutes, but said clusters of cases have shown up across the state.

“In Buffalo, we have had clusters that pop up,” the Governor said. Buffalo is considered stable right now, in terms of hospitalizations.

As the “curve” continues to flatten, Cuomo is looking toward the future — not just preparing for new cases, but “re-opening” New York.

It’s not going to be quick or sudden, but Cuomo would like to see the state get back to normal over a period of time. The question is “when?”, but no one can truly say for sure when that is, Cuomo stated.

“What’s going to happen is there will be points of resolution over time,” he said during his daily briefing.

Again pushing politics out of the picture, Cuomo encouraged New Yorkers to listen to medical experts, not opinions rooted in political standpoints at this time. In the Governor’s personal opinion, he believes “the worst is over if we continue to be smart.”

Going forward with a plan, Cuomo said the smart thing experts can do right now is study data, and take note of what has happened in other countries that were hit hard with the coronavirus before us, like South Korea, Italy and China. It’s a matter of seeing what worked and what didn’t, and what the United States can learn from it.

Without a specific timeline, the Governor highlighted the steps he wants the state to take going forward with New York’s eventual opening.

They include these, in the following order:

  1. Ease isolation
  2. Increase economic activity
  3. Recalibrate “essential worker” economy
  4. Apply more testing and precautions
  5. Do not increase the infection rate

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.

Anyone who applied for unemployment, and receives a call from a private number is encouraged to answer it at this time, as it may be from the Department of Labor.

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 covid19supplies@esd.ny.gov.

If you wish to utilize the state’s emotional support hotline at this time, call 1-844-863-9314.

Evan Anstey is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here.

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