Cuomo again said that New York was “making great progress” with fewer infections and fewer hospitalizations and a death toll that has dropped sharply since the peak of the disease in the state, following drastic measures that included the closure of non-essential businesses and schools and the implementation of social measures, distancing measures.
He noted that Long Island has made substantial progress, with the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 increasing from 20% to 2% in the past six weeks.
“It all depends on our behavior, nothing more, nothing less,” Cuomo said in his daily briefing from Albany. “Reopen with caution. Why? Because we have seen too many examples … where it exploded. “
While expressing support for protests that took place across the state in the death of George Floyd below the knee of a Minneapolis police officer accused of murder, Cuomo again expressed concern about the implications of the mass protests in New York, Long Island and other parts of the state during a pandemic.
He said the protesters could make the virus crisis worse and asked them not only to take preventive measures, but to assume that they were exposed to COVID-19 and get tested.
“If you were at one of these protests, I would assume, as a precaution, that you are infected,” said Cuomo, “… and tell people that you may have been exposed and act as you were. . “
He said that those who attended these protests “have a civic duty” to help in the fight against coronaviruses and should be concerned about the possibility of not only being infected with the coronavirus themselves, but pass it on to others, including elderly grandparents and their loved ones, because “they could die from this virus. “
Nassau County Director Laura Curran has confirmed the county is on track to start phase two next Wednesday, with “retail businesses, hair salons and hair salons” slated to open she said. Administrative and office jobs, real estate and outdoor dining are also expected to resume.
“We really need to recover this economy, we have to get people back to work, and we have to reopen our society, we are getting there,” said Curran.
New York State manages its reopening in phases and regions based on health and preparation parameters monitored daily. Long Island has been in phase one for more than a week, with a return from its construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting as well as retail at the curb, collection and delivery.
In the second phase, Long Island and other regions will be able to bring back real estate, store retail, office work, sales, rental and rental of vehicles, hair salons and hair salons and outdoor dining services.
New York City is still on track to enter Phase 1 reopening on Monday, Cuomo said. He said Westchester, Rockland and the Hudson Valley will enter phase two on Tuesday, while Nassau and Suffolk counties are on track to do so on Wednesday.
In an appearance on Long Island News Radio with Jay Oliver on Thursday morning, Cuomo said that a decision on holding the sleepless summer camps was still about a week away.
He said he wanted to gather as much information as possible about a pediatric inflammatory disease related to the coronavirus that has struck some children in New York and elsewhere. “We have to have a decision in about a week,” he said of the camp issue.
Three people, including an 18-year-old girl from Suffolk County, died of the syndrome, Newsday reported in mid-May.
The State Department of Health is investigating 199 reported cases of illnesses in children, adolescents and young adults who may have the syndrome. He previously described the disease as similar to Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome, which he says can damage blood vessels and affect the heart.
Cuomo announced earlier this week that summer day camps will be allowed starting June 29.
Last month, he announced that New York schools would not open for summer sessions in person, and that they were to be held online only.
Cuomo said he currently cannot authorize traditional high school or college degrees with a large crowd.
“It’s one of those real moments in life, going to college or high school,” he said, noting that one of his own daughters was finishing up. college studies this spring. “So not having a diploma is painful. I get it. As soon as we can do it, we will. “
But he said public health concerns must prevail over the desire for graduation ceremonies.
“The problem is a public health problem and you don’t want people to be sick or dead,” he said. “That’s the problem, no. It’s death. It’s about balancing risk and reward. “
He noted that the state’s first coronavirus “hot spot” erupted when an infected person attended an event in a synagogue in New Rochelle, triggering multiple infections in that city.
“People have died,” he said.
“I know everyone wants to go to high school,” he added. ” I get it. Not if they’re going to die. “
Curran said Thursday that “the numbers continue to go in the right direction” in terms of coronavirus indicators.
There have been 210 COVID-19 hospitalizations in 11 county hospitals, reflecting a 30% drop in hospitalizations since the beginning of the week, she said.
“Lots of people are getting tested,” in Nassau County, the number administered from a few days to 5,000, Curran said.
The percentage of positive test cases in Nassau was 3% or less, she said. “This is very, very good news. “
Curran said there is an increase in testing at Roosevelt and that a new effort to boost viral and antibody testing on the barrier island of Long Beach is underway.
Statewide, indicators have also continued to improve. The 52-year-old daily death toll continued to remain well below the peak of nearly 800 a day in early April, according to state data released Thursday.
The total number of people hospitalized for the coronavirus, 2,849, also continued to decline and was a fraction of the nearly 19,000 at the height of the New York pandemic.
Check back for updates on this developing story.