While the number of New York State coronavirus-related deaths is on the decline, Governor Andrew Cuomo said Friday that there is still much to do to contain COVID-19.
The governor also said that schools kindergarten through grade 12 and college campuses would remain closed throughout the state for the remainder of the academic year.
During his daily coronavirus briefing, Cuomo stated that on April 30, 289 New Yorkers died of COVID-19, down from 306 the day before. While hospitalizations are also down, New York is still seeing roughly 900 to 1,000 new cases of coronavirus requiring hospitalization each day, a number that the governor says remains too high.
“That’s still too high a number to have every day. It’s better than where we were, but it’s still a high infection rate,” said Cuomo. “It’s still a burden on our hospital system.”
Cuomo said that the actions that New York has taken so far have significantly helped decrease the number of new coronavirus cases. However, he wants to “drill down” on the nature of the new cases.
“Now that we have it basically stabilized and on the decline, let’s get more refined and more targeted,” the governor said.
Cuomo indicated that he would be speaking with hospitals across the state about getting more specific information about the new cases. In the past three days, 17.5 percent of new cases came in Manhattan, followed by 17.4 percent in Brooklyn. Bronx had 12.8 percent of the new cases, followed by Queens with 11.9 percent.
Downstate counties, which are the largest and most densely populated, have the highest counts, Cuomo noted, but added that more specific information is still needed to have a better plan to combat COVID-19.
“We’ve got a snapshot of where the cases are coming from, but we need more specific information to have a specific battle plan,” said Cuomo. “Where do the cases come from? Are they people staying home and getting infected by a family member, or are they essential workers who are still traveling and possibly getting infected at work?”
Other types of information that Cuomo wants to know include the patient’s demographic and health status, how they commute, and if they reside in a nursing home.
In a joint statement on the school closings, New York State Department of Education Chancellor Betty Rosa and Interim Commissioner of Education and President of the University of the State of New York Shannon Tahoe said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has put us all in a place where we are required to make difficult but necessary decisions to protect ourselves and our loved ones. Closing schools for the remainder of the school year is the right one to protect New York’s students, teachers, and school staff.”