Colby Cosh on COVID-19: Sartans at Thermopylae? Blood pressure medication and coronavirus


NEW YORK – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday cited tentative signs of the coronavirus epidemic in his state but warned of complacency as the death toll in the United States has surpassed 10,000 and the number of cases has reached 350,000.

New York reported 4,758 coronavirus-related deaths on Monday, an increase of 599 from Sunday, compared with an increase of 594 in the past 24 hours. The state’s death toll rose by 630 on Friday.

Cases in the state increased 7 percent in 24 hours to 130,680, Cuomo said. Hospitalizations, ICU admissions and intubations – the process of inserting a breathing tube for use in mechanical ventilation – had all declined, signs of “possible flattening of the curve”.

“While none of this is good news, the possible flattening of the curve is better than the increases we have seen,” Cuomo said in a daily briefing, referring to the shape of the curve when deaths were displayed on a graph.

He warned that the numbers remain bleak and that he was not sure if the state had turned the corner, saying, “If we stagnate, we stagnate at a high level. “

Cuomo extended an order to close non-essential businesses and schools until April 29 and told residents who ventured outside in good weather while ignoring social distancing rules that they would face maximum fines $ 1,000, twice the initial penalty.

“This virus has hit our hindquarters,” said Cuomo. “Now is not the time to let go of what we are doing. “

US stocks were up sharply from New York data, with the S&P rising nearly 6%, which now makes it down about 22% from its February 19 peak. During its recent March trough, stocks were down more than 30%.

A national health official in the United States said the country had entered what he called “week of maximum death,” while a surveillance report said hospitals were struggling to maintain. and extend their capacity to care for infected patients.

The death toll in the United States, 10,297 on Monday, was rapidly approaching Italy and Spain, the countries most killed to date, with nearly 16,000 and more than 13,000 respectively, according to a count Reuters of official data.

“This will be the peak of hospitalization, the peak of the week in intensive care and unfortunately the peak of death,” said Admiral Brett Giroir, a doctor and a member of the White House coronavirus task force, on Monday.

He particularly alarmed the states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and the city of Detroit.

Even so, Giroir said on NBC’s “Today” show, “whether you live in a small town in America or live in the” Big Apple “, everyone is aware of this and everyone must follow the precautions that we have defined. “

More than 90% of Americans are subject to residence orders issued by state governors, while eight states are still keen to impose such restrictions.

The surveillance report, based on a national survey from March 23 to 27, showed that “severe shortages” of test supplies and long waits for test results limited the ability of hospitals to monitor the health of staff and workers. patients.

“Hospitals have also described significant challenges in maintaining and expanding patient care capacity,” said the report released by the office of the Inspector General of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. It was described as a snapshot of the problems encountered by hospitals in mid-March.

The watchdog said that “inconsistent guidelines from federal, state and local authorities” confused hospitals and the public, while widespread shortages of personal protective equipment put hospital staff and patients at risk.


New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said a shortage of health professionals was replacing the city’s lack of equipment as the city’s primary need and called an additional 45,000 people in April.

“Increasingly, the challenge is going to be the staff,” de Blasio told reporters outside a surgical gown factory. “We need these supplies, but we also need heroes to carry them.”

The city has reported more than 3,100 dead and may have to temporarily bury the dead in an unspecified park, said Mark Levine, chairman of the New York City Council’s health committee.

“Soon we will start” temporary burial “. This will likely be done using a NYC park for burials (yes, you read that right). Trenches will be dug for 10 online coffins, ”Levine wrote on Twitter. “It will be done in a dignified, orderly – and temporary manner. But it will be difficult for the NYers to take. “

At least one model suggested that the death rate in the United States would slow down. The University of Washington model, one of many cited by the United States and some state officials, now projects the number of deaths in the United States to 81,766 as of August 4, a drop from about 12,000 compared to a projection this weekend.

White House medical experts predicted that between 100,000 and 240,000 Americans could die in the pandemic, even if orders to stay at home were followed.


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