THE number of coronavirus cases in New York State continues to double almost daily that it is now reaching a critical point, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo who said the outbreak spread is “accelerating like a bullet train.”
The state has registered the highest and the greatest rate of infection and death toll is now 210, with 25,665 positive cases confirmed. New York City continues to have the bulk of the cases with 14,904 confirmed cases.
“We’re not slowing it, and it is accelerating on its own,” Cuomo said, citing the rate of infection in New York which is now doubling every three days.
The governor has called on the federal government to release ventilators needed for people in respiratory distress and to procure more using special powers to order them from private industry.
“What happens to New York is going to wind up happening to California and Washington state and Illinois; it’s just a matter of time. Deploy the resources here for our apex and later deploy the ventilators to other parts of the country where they are needed,” he said.
The apex, he said, could get here in as soon as 14 to 21 days.
NYS on Pause
Over the weekend, Cuomo put “New York State on PAUSE” with an executive order, a 10-point policy to assure uniform safety for everyone.
He also announced an initial delivery of hospital supplies to the Jacob K. Javits Center where FEMA has started to build a 1,000-bed temporary hospital that will help increase New York’s hospital capacity to combat COVID-19 and open next week.
The “NYS on Pause” executive order states that effective at 8:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 22, all non-essential businesses statewide will be closed.
Non-essential gatherings like parties, celebrations and other social events are also canceled or postponed at this time.
Social distancing must be practiced where there is any concentration of individuals outside their home and these are limited to workers providing essential services. The same holds true for public individuals who must be at least six feet away from others.
Businesses and entities that provide other essential services must implement rules that help facilitate social distancing. Individuals should limit outdoor recreational activities to non-contact and avoid activities where they come in close contact with other people.
The public should also limit use of public transportation to when absolutely necessary and should limit potential exposure by spacing out at least six feet from other riders.
Sick individuals should not leave their home unless to receive medical care and only after a telehealth visit to determine if leaving the home is in the best interest of their health.
Young people should also practice social distancing and avoid contact with vulnerable populations. Use precautionary sanitizer practices such as using isopropyl alcohol wipes.
Additionally, Cuomo announced that the state is opening a drive-thru COVID-19 mobile testing facility in the Bronx, following the success of the mobile testing centers in New Rochelle, Rockland County, Staten Island and Long Island. Drive-through mobile testing facilities help keep people who are sick or at risk of having contracted coronavirus out of healthcare facilities where they could infect other people.
New York is currently testing more than 16,000 people per day, more than any other state and more than China and South Korea on a per capital basis.