State’s drastic ‘social distancing’ measures may be working, governor says

State’s drastic ‘social distancing’ measures may be working, governor says
WWNY- COVID-19 Updates (Source: WWNY)

ALBANY, N.Y. (WWNY) - There is evidence that New York’s drastic measures to reduce people’s exposure to the coronavirus are working.

But Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the outlook still looks grim.

“The evidence suggests that the density control measures may be working.”

That’s based on projections that show that on Sunday, hospitalizations were doubling every two days. By Monday it was 3.4 days and by Tuesday it was 4.7 days.

“That is almost too good to be true,” he said, “but the theory is, given the density that we’re dealing with, it spreads very quickly, but if you reduce the density, you can reduce the spread very quickly.”

Cuomo said he’s not 100 percent convinced the projections are accurate, “but the arrows are heading in the right direction and that is always better than the arrows heading in the wrong direction.”

The governor said now the peak is expected in three weeks, but the state is still projected to need 140,000 hospital beds, 40,000 of which will be in intensive care. With hospital increasing their capacities, downstate state and New York City owned dormitories being pressed into service, and emergency hospitals in four locations, the governor said they state can handle close to 120,000 hospitalizations.

Cuomo said he is still working with federal officials to get the ventilators the state will need.

After 4,000 of them were promised from federal stockpiles, the state has access to roughly half of the 30,000 ventilators the governor says it will need,

In terms of who will use the equipment, Cuomo said “you can create beds, you can find equipment, you have to have the staff.”

Cuomo said 40,000 health care professionals have volunteered their services to care for COVID-19 patients, including 2,300 doctors, 2,400 nurse practitioners, 20,000 RNs and LPNs, and about 1,400 other professionals.

Also, the governor said, more than 6,000 mental health professionals have volunteered to answer calls on a state hotline (1-844-863-9314).

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