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Cuomo: NY May Be 'Past the Plateau' on COVID-19

Apr 18, 2020

Credit Office of NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York’s COVID-19 crisis may be on the decline, albeit slowly, Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters Saturday, meaning the state may be past the peak of the disease and now approaching more favorable numbers.

That’s largely based on data from New York City and the surrounding counties, where the disease spiked in the last month and a half, but has since begun to slow.

“If you look at the past three days, you could agree that we’re past the plateau and starting to descend which would be very good news,” Cuomo said. “Again, it’s only three days but that’s what the numbers would start to suggest.”

Cuomo said emergency rooms are still struggling, but now have fewer people in them than a few weeks ago, when the disease is projected to have been at its peak statewide.

The net number of hospitalizations in New York was down again Friday, according to data released Saturday. That’s the fifth consecutive day of decline, with a net 349 fewer people admitted to the hospital than the day before.

That number takes into account people who were admitted to the hospital, and subtracts the number of deaths and discharges.

An additional 540 people died from the disease Friday, Cuomo said. That brings the total number of reported deaths to 13,362 statewide.

A total of 1,760 people were discharged from the hospital Friday, according to state data.

The gross number of hospitalizations, meaning the number of people admitted to the hospital without subtracting discharges and deaths, was at 1,915 Friday. It’s been at about that level for the last five days after an initial decline the week before.

There were a net 48 fewer people intubated Friday than the day before, which means fewer people currently require treatment with a ventilator.

An additional 7,090 people tested positive for the disease on Friday, according to state data, bringing the all-time total number of cases in New York to 236,732.

Cuomo called, again Saturday, for the federal government to help states streamline testing efforts, to both detect the disease and antibodies, noting that it’s currently in the hands of states and a few hundred private companies.

Those companies, Cuomo said, contract with labs in New York state to sell their tests and testing equipment. But tests also require so-called reagents, or chemicals, which are in short supply, he said.

The National Governors Association, Cuomo said, is asking the federal government to set aside $500 billion for states to fund efforts related to the coronavirus. Aside from its direct spending, New York is anticipating a revenue shortfall upwards of $10 billion.

Dan Clark is host and producer at New York NOW.