New York coronavirus death toll escalates

New York City alone has suffered more than a quarter of US deaths in the coronavirus outbreak. Courtesy #DStv403

NEW YORK - With dangerously low levels of medical supplies left, New York state is bracing for an onslaught of new COVID-19 cases next week.

New York on Friday suffered its single deadliest day from the coronavirus, recording more than 500 deaths, and bringing the statewide total to nearly 3,000, about the same number killed in the US in the 11 September 2001 attacks.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo pleaded for resources nationwide to be deployed to the state, where ventilators, hospital beds and other medical supplies are mere days away from running out with the worst of the onslaught yet to come.

“People are going to die in the near term because they walk into a hospital and there's no bed with a ventilator, because there's either no bed or no staff or no PPE or no ventilator. That is what is going to happen," Cuomo said.

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New York City alone has suffered more than a quarter of US deaths in the outbreak.

Cuomo said he will sign an executive order to take ventilators from institutions that don’t need them and either give them back at a later date or reimburse the institutions.

Meanwhile, healthcare workers protested outside of New York City’s Mount Sinai hospital, desperate to get the message out about the city’s dire needs.

The lack of available healthcare workers, with many of them now too ill with the coronavirus to come in, has delivered another crushing blow.

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio is asking for an additional 1,000 nurses, 150 doctors and 300 respiratory therapists for the city.

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The mayor told CNN he thinks there are enough ventilators to get through Sunday after that, he’s not sure.

New York City has yet to receive a resupply for the up to 3,000 ventilators needed by next week, de Blasio said, urging President Trump to mobilize medical personnel from the US military.

Cuomo was asked whether he was ‘seizing’ ventilators with his executive order, a term he objected to, shortly before being asked what his late father, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, taught him about leadership in a crisis.

“He taught me to trust in love, and we need love now," he said.

"We need love as a people. Am I seizing ventilators? No, I’m taking excess equipment to save lives. It’s about doing the right thing and it’s about love....”


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