WXXI AM News

Coronavirus News

We've compiled all the latest stories about the coronavirus pandemic here so you can find them easily.

We've also compiled a list of informational resources that can guide you to more coronavirus information.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that New York is offering help to states like Texas and Arizona that are struggling with spiking COVID-19 infections.

At the same time, the governor said he’s talking with airport officials and federal border control officers on how best to enforce a travel advisory that requires travelers from states with high rates of the virus to quarantine for 14 days.  

Max Schulte/WXXI News

For the first time in more than three months, visitors were walking along the trails at Seneca Park Zoo on Friday morning.

The zoo opened only for members. The public will be welcomed back on Sunday.

To limit overcrowding, visitors have to make online reservations, and 125 people will be allowed through the gate every half-hour. Acting zoo director David Hamilton said Friday's schedule was sold out, with 1,625 zoo members registering for tickets.

Once inside, everyone over the age of 2 is required to wear a mask and follow a one-way path through the exhibits.

University of Rochester Medical Center

Hospitals in Monroe County reopened for visitors on Thursday for the first time since they adopted zero-visitation policies in March to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Both Rochester Regional Health and the University of Rochester Medical Center said hundreds of people arrived at their hospitals hoping to visit patients. At Rochester General Hospital, almost 200 people showed up in just the first hour of visitation, a spokesperson said.

Three of Rochester’s largest cultural attractions: the Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester Museum and Science Center, and The Strong National Museum of Play, will open Saturday, June 27, as part of New York Forward’s Phase 4 for reopening. Governor Andrew Cuomo said this week the Finger Lakes and four other regions are on track to begin Phase 4 on Friday.

The George Eastman Museum will remain closed until mid-July due to construction on the Thomas Tischer Visitor Center. The Strong and MAG will be open to members only to start, and RMSC will be open to the general public.

Dan Clark/WMHT

New York has hit another milestone in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic: hospitalizations from the disease have now dipped below 1,000 for the first time in about three months, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Thursday.

And to keep that number low, Cuomo said New York state will be conducting random inspections of people who arrive from states with high infection rates of the disease.

When will it be safe to sing together again? It’s a question the New York Times asked earlier this month when reporting on how choirs have been linked to several coronavirus outbreaks. Scientific research shows that COVID-19 is primarily transmitted through respiratory droplets. When singers project in performance settings, they may unwittingly spread the virus, if infected. There have been conflicting messages across the globe about the risk of singing during the pandemic.

This hour, we discuss what the data shows and how local and national groups are adapting, both in the short and long term. Our guests:

  • Lee Wright, director of music ministry at Downtown United Presbyterian Church, and founder artistic director of First Inversion choral ensemble
  • Janet Galván, professor of performance studies, and director of choral activities and conducting at Ithaca College
  • Dr. Scott Stratton-Smith, family medicine specialist with Rochester Regional Health
  • Brenda Tremblay, host for WXXI's Classical 91.5, and member of a local choir

Why have some countries been so effective at crushing the coronavirus, while the United States has plateaued? We get perspective from guests with roots in New Zealand, which has been perhaps the most successful country in the world during the pandemic. They discuss cultural differences that have played into responses to COVID-19.

Our guests:

  • Mike Johansson, New Zealand native, social media strategist, and senior lecturer of communication at RIT
  • Chris Thomas, partner with Nixon Peabody whose family has roots in New Zealand

  

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget office is temporarily withholding 20% of a state aid payment owed to several cities in New York, citing the COVID-19 pandemic-related revenue shortfall and budget deficit plaguing state government.

Cuomo and his budget director have been saying for months that if Congress does not provide another relief package for state and local governments hit hard by the effects of the pandemic, then the state will have to cut funding to schools, hospitals and cities by one-fifth.

When Allison Roberts lost her job at the Jewish Community Center on March 16, she tried applying for unemployment benefits, but she couldn't get through by phone or online.

After weeks of this, the human resources representative from the JCC started helping her with some assistance from the office of a local member of Congress

eastviewmall.com

Governor Andrew Cuomo has confirmed that the Finger Lakes and four other regions in the state are on track to enter Phase 4 of the reopening process on Friday.

But that process does not include reopening gyms, movie theaters and indoor shopping malls right now.

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