Special Report

Shutdown: The Coronavirus

Cuomo demands more federal support as coronavirus cases rise in New York

Governor Andrew Cuomo at today’s press conference.

As the coronavirus continues to raise havoc in New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo demanded federal support during a press conference today.

He said the curve is not flattening despite the virtual lock down of the state, with cases doubling every three days, he said. The state has more than 25,000 coronavirus cases, about ten times more than any other state. About 15,000 of those cases are in New York City.  The rate of hospitalization is 23 percent.

Cuomo said the state needs 30,000 more ventilators. Federal Emergency Management Agency announced today that New York was getting 400 ventilators.  But Cuomo needs FEMA to  do more.

“If more ventilators aren’t sent within weeks, you pick the 26,000 people who are going to die,” he said.

He  wants President Donald Trump to  act with more urgency,  as his state is the epicenter of the virus in the United States.

“The President said it’s a war. It is a war. Well then act like it’s a war,” Cuomo said.

 Trump said that the federal government is doing a “tremendous job”  and blames Cuomo for not ordering ventilators years ago. He has said that the country is ready to transition away from social distancing and get back to work despite more Americans getting sick and dying of the virus.  He wants Americans back to work by Easter.

Speaking from the Javits Center, which will convert its showroom floor into New York’s first overflow hospital for COVID-19 patients this week, Cuomo thanked the Army Corps of Engineers and the staff members at the convention center for their quick work in setting up the makeshift hospital before  announcing the news of the dramatic increase.

“The discussion all along has been, ‘How fast does the rate of increase spread and ‘Can we slow the rate of increase? We are not slowing it and it is accelerating on its own,” he said.

Forecasters, who once described the spread of the virus a freight train, are now calling it a bullet train, Cuomo said. 

Now the concern at hand, he said,  is where the number of cases of infections will apex, or be at their highest. 

The projected apex for the number of hospital beds needed has risen from 110,000 to 140,000. There are only 53,000 regular beds and 3,000 ICU beds currently. There will be 40,000 ICU beds needed.

“We are exercising all options as aggressively as we can because they project the apex to approximately be 14-21 days away,” Cuomo said. “We are doing everything we can on every level. We have increased testing to the highest level in the United States and highest per capita level on the globe. No one is testing more than we are testing.”

Hydroxychloroquine and zithromax have emerged as potential lifesavers for coronavirus patients as the two medications used together can fight against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronaviruses, according to  CNN . Cuomo also wants to implement DOH Plasma Injections, which will involve taking plasma from people that are infected and have the antibodies, and putting the plasma into the people who are still severely struggling with the disease. This will also help with antibody testing, a detailed part of his plan for increased testing. It will allow people to have their blood tested to see if they have antibodies for the coronavirus, which means they might have been infected but never knew it.

“If you had the coronavirus and resolved, you now have immunity to the virus. For some period of time, most experts suggest it’s a significant amount of time,” Cuomo said. “These would be very important things for us to know because we have health care workers that could return to work.”

Cuomo said this biggest concern in making sure that hospitals are equipped and have staff.  He said he is prepared to do, and use whatever resources are available to him.

“Beds without staff are virtually useless,” Cuomo said. “Hospitals must now increase the number of beds by 50%, with the goal of trying to increase it by 100%. I have no problem using the dormitories all across our state campuses. I’m speaking to hotel owners about taking over their hotels to put patients in. I will turn this state upside down to get the number of beds we need.”



Other Stories in Special Report: Shutdown: The Coronavirus

Boston springs slowly back to life

Thomas Hengge May 28, 2020

A dictatorship called COVID-19

Alpha Kamara May 28, 2020

During pandemic, Rio de Janeiro residents fear police

Marina Guimaraes May 27, 2020

Recovering from drugs during a pandemic

Kyla Milberger May 26, 2020

  Covid-19 takes away the communal joy at Eid-al-Fitr celebration

Narkwor Kwablaa May 25, 2020

Beloved old school game sees boom in numbers during coronavirus quarantine

Michael Yang May 15, 2020

Coronavirus leaves the fate of some beloved New York events uncertain

Emily Glass May 15, 2020

South Africa’s lockdown exposes inequalities

Kathleen Taylor May 14, 2020

Churchgoers find spiritual growth through virtual services 

Harrison Tsui May 14, 2020

” I’m working with COVID patients tonight”

Margaret Guzman May 14, 2020

Singles connect on Tinder to fight quarantine blues 

Yaroslava Bondar May 14, 2020

Jewish traditions during a pandemic

Sydney Fishman May 13, 2020

The Bible and Coronavirus

Jonathan Sarabia May 13, 2020

Doctor uses social media to give advice and hope

Sope Aluko May 12, 2020

First Sandy, Now COVID: Lower East Side Activists Grapple With Construction for Climate Project

Izzie Ramirez May 12, 2020

Dating during a pandemic

Bessie Liu May 12, 2020

The last reponders

Shiyu Xu May 11, 2020

When the pandemic hits a shelter for abused boys 

Amanda Perez Pintado May 11, 2020

Portugal contains the coronavirus despite Spain’s woes

Catarina Lamelas Moura May 11, 2020

Warm weather brings crowds to Prospect Park

Bessie Liu May 11, 2020

New York coronavirus numbers continue to fall

Jonathan Sarabia May 10, 2020

Living through the pandemic while a loved one is behind bars

Amanda Perez Pintado May 10, 2020

Pandemic ends all high school senior year traditions

Jonathan Sarabia May 10, 2020

Coronavirus might have caused the death of many children who were misdiagnosed 

Ximena Del Cerro May 9, 2020

Farmers destroy staggering amounts of food even as food lines grow

Karen Camela Watson May 9, 2020

Coronavirus pandemic threatens border towns in Mexico

Sydney Fishman and Ximena Del Cerro May 9, 2020

Pence’s press secretary tests positive for Covid-19

Shiyu Xu May 8, 2020

During pandemic NYC tenants in limbo

John DiLillo May 8, 2020

Llamas could be coronavirus heroes

Catarina Lamelas Moura May 8, 2020

Lawmakers, Legal Experts Clash Over Much Needed Business Interruption Insurance Coverage for Small Businesses

James Duffy May 8, 2020

Rent relief in NY, JetBlue’s flyover and Trump’s valet tests positive for coronavirus in today’s news

Amanda Perez Pintado May 7, 2020

Coronavirus tears through the Navajo Nation 

Amanda Perez Pintado May 7, 2020

In Singapore, spaces close, but restaurants open

Yifan Yu May 6, 2020

Press secretary calls Fauci testifying before congress “publicity stunt”

Kathleen Taylor May 6, 2020

Harry Potter and the Magical Malady of the Movies

Ahad Sanwari May 6, 2020

Trump speaks to human loss, Cuomo lashes out at President’s comments

Catarina Lamelas Moura May 5, 2020

PPE in the city

Narkwor Kwabla May 5, 2020

Boring Politics is Good Politics – Especially in a Pandemic

Serafina Smith May 5, 2020

Stuck: Life under quarantine in Rio de Janeiro

Marina Guimaraes May 5, 2020

New York’s Emptiness

Maria Abreu May 5, 2020

In an Airbnb Room During Lockdown in Jamaica, Queens

Dayo Paul May 4, 2020

What Temporary Means: Portraits of family at home

Guillermo Manning May 4, 2020

Stockholm Stays Open

Tatiana Kireeva May 4, 2020

NYC now producing its own coronavirus test kits

Maureen Mullarkey May 3, 2020

Miss you, mom: Spending Ramadan together through a screen

Maznah Shehzad May 3, 2020

Life in front of a screen

Patricio Zenklussen May 3, 2020

Coronavirus and the Shincheonji

Bessie Liu May 3, 2020

It’s The Little Things

Sope Aluko May 3, 2020

Days In, Days Out: A doctor’s life during Covid-19

Elsa Benamouzig May 2, 2020

Contactless: Food Delivery amid COVID-19

Keighton Li May 2, 2020