New York Now Has 20,000 Cases Of Coronavirus, As State Orders Hospitals To Increase Capacity By 50%

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo Holds Daily News Conference Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Cases surged 38% overnight.

Bennett Raglin/Getty Images

Topline: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in a press conference on Monday that the number of reported coronavirus cases in the state has risen to over 20,000 people, while also issuing an emergency order directing hospitals to increase their capacity by 50%.

  • The number of coronavirus cases in New York has continued to rise at an alarming rate, surging 38% overnight to 20,875 people infected, which means around 5,000 new cases have been reported since last night, the governor said.
  • As of yesterday, 25% of all coronavirus testing nationwide is happening in New York state, where 78,000 people in total have been tested, including 16,000 more overnight.
  • The hospitalization rate for COVID-19 in New York fell slightly, to 13%—down from up to 20% earlier. 
  • Cuomo on Monday issued an emergency order for hospitals in the state to increase their capacity by 50%, adding that he’d like to see that number increase to 100%.
  • He pledged to get PPE and supplies to all medical workers in New York hospitals, saying that there is a plan for increasing beds and balancing overflow with several new treatment centers being set up across the state.
  • Cuomo also urged the Trump administration to use the Defense Production Act, saying that it was detrimental to have states compete for resources. “You cannot continue to do these supplies on an ad-hoc basis,” he said.

Big number: New York City alone accounts for 12,305 confirmed infections, Cuomo said. He estimated that up to 80% of New York state’s almost 20 million residents will get the coronavirus: “Many people will get the virus but few will truly be in danger.”

Crucial statistics: New York’s is the hardest-hit state in the country with its more than 20,000 reported cases of coronavirus—far more than in other embattled states like New Jersey, Washington or California. A total of 621 patients have ended up in the ICU and 157 have died so far.

Crucial quote: “This can go on for several months… we all have to now confront that that is a new reality,” Cuomo said in his press conference. “Realize the time frame we are expecting, make peace with it, and find a way to help each other through this situation,

Tangent: “Fund the need,” Cuomo urged the federal government. “Proportionately, in absolute terms, New York has by far the greatest need in the nation.”

Key background: Last Friday, the governor ordered 100% of the state’s workforce to stay home, except for “essential services.” A day before that, Cuomo had ordered 75% of the workforce in nonessential businesses to stay home, comparing the coronavirus pandemic is akin to one of the most significant moments in his state’s history—the September 11, 2001, attacks. “I have no second thoughts about going to zero essential workers,” Cuomo said on Monday, noting that “still hasn’t brought the rate [of infections] low enough.”

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