MIKE BLOOMBERG TO FUND, ORGANIZE, TRAIN, DISPATCH, TRACING PROGRAM JURISDICTIONALLY COORDINATED IN NY-CT-NJ
HIRING 35,000 MEDICAL STUDENTS AS TRACERS TO THE HOT SPOTS.
CURVE CONTINUES ON A SLOW DESCENT.
THE TRUMP & CUOMO TEAM :
“VERY PRODUCTIVE MEETING”. $1.3 BILLION FOR NY FOR TRACING, AGREEMENT ON FUNDING STATE REVENUE LOSSES. CONGRESS NEXT STOP
“NOT THE TIME FOR BABY STEPS,” CUOMO TELLS CONGRESS.
BUSINESSES, SCHOOLS, TRANSIT HAVE TO OPEN SIMULTANEOUSLY.
WPCNR WEDNESDAY GOVERNOR CUOMO CORONAVIRUS BRIEFING By John F. Bailey, April 22, 2020:
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo told his news conference on coronavirus this morning on Day 53 of the New York State coronavirus pandemic, “We are in a much better place. The downward curve is on descent, the Hospitalization Rate of new cases continues down.
Intubations of patients (to ventilators) lowest it has been. Now, the governor said it remains to be seen “how long” it will take to get to an acceptably low level of new hospitalizations to open, “3 weeks to 6 weeks?”
The Goveronor focused on the 474 new deaths reported yesterday. He said whether the curve continues down we will know by how people behave: “You will see the results in the number of hsopitalizations in just a few days… your effort is how we get out of this. Truth and facts that’s how we operate in New York.”
Though the curve of coronavirus infections is going down, the governor said, “Don’t be too cocky. I’m not going to make the decision to reopen on political pressure to reopen. We can’t make the wrong decision. Now is not the time to act stupid. More people will die if we are not smart. That is not who we are.”
He said he had a “productive meeting at the White House yesterday. We spoke truth and facts and made a plan going forward, meeting with The President and his political team. They don’t like me much politically, but when you’re in a foxhole, you may not care for the guy in the foxhole next to you, but you protect the person next to you and charge up the hill. That was the sense of the meeting.”
The Governor said the President agreed to the states doing the testing, and the government would fund the money for supplies to ramp up the testing, about 40,000 tests a week., and $1.3 Billlion to fund the tracing program that Governor Cuomo feels is essential to stopping coronavirus from reigniting before any opening of the New York State economy takes place. Agreement on reimbursing New York State for its lost revenues was also agreed on, and is up to congress.
Mr. Cuomo said the first two relief bills passed by Congress were great, “I get that.” But he pointed out again the revenue losses that left New York and other states facing massive cuts to education, health, and local municipalities Mr. Cuomo said the congress has to act on a third bill to make states solvent: “Now is not the time to take baby steps.”
The Governor announced plans to hire 35,000 medical students to act as tracers who would follow coronavirus positives from places of work to where they lived to trace what other populations they may have infected.
He said Michael Bloomberg, former Mayor of New York, has volunteered to head up the Tracing Program, select and train the force of student “Tracers.” Governor Cuomo said that the Tracing Program would also trace in New Jersey, resources being split between the two states. Mr. Bloomberg is donating $20 Million to the Tracing Program.
In a news release at 2:15 PM from the Governor’s office more details:
“Mike Bloomberg and Bloomberg Philanthropies have committed organizational support and technical assistance to help build and execute this new program. The contact tracing program will be done in coordination with the downstate region as well as New Jersey and Connecticut and will serve as an important resource to gather best practices and as a model that can be replicated across the nation. There has never been a contact tracing program implemented at this scale either in New York or anywhere in the United States. The program will launch immediately.
Bloomberg Philanthropies has committed $10.5 million, along with organizational support and technical assistance, to help build and execute this new program.
“The numbers indicate we are past the apex of this pandemic, and while we start our work to re-open our economy we must ensure we are doing it in a way that does no harm and does not undo all of the work and sacrifice it has taken to get here,” Governor Cuomo said. “One of the most critical pieces of getting to a new normal is to ramp up testing, but states have a second big task – to put together an army of people to trace each person who tested positive, find out who they contacted and then isolate those people. This partnership with Mike Bloomberg to create an unprecedented, nation-leading contact tracing program will do just that and serve as a model for the rest of the nation.”
“We’re all eager to begin loosening restrictions on our daily lives and our economy. But in order to do that as safely as possible, we first have to put in place systems to identify people who may have been exposed to the virus and support them as they isolate,” said Michael Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and Bloomberg LP, three-term mayor of New York City. “I’m honored to partner with Governor Cuomo and New York State to help do that, by creating a new contact tracing program on a widespread scale. Coupled with far more testing, it will help us drive the virus into a corner — saving lives and allowing more people to begin getting back to work.”
The Governor announced the coronavirus concentrations are three times higher coronavirus infections communities of minorities that have industrial plants contributing to air pollution that puts the neigborhood residents more at risk.
In the “Q. & A.” the Governor, when queried incessantly on why not reopen because so many people have no pay, have limited cash and needed to get back to work, the Governor said: “The illness is death. It is not about me, it is about we. Speak out as if it was you and your family. Nothing comes before the public health risk.”
On the issue of nursing homes losing licenses and providing care nursing homes were not providing, the governor said he would address this issue more fully Thursday. He patiently explained to reporters all over the nursing home problems, that the state regulated and licensed, but the nursing homes were private they were not state run. The governor did say if the nursing homes could not take care of coronavirus patients appropriately, the state could relieve the concerns of their licenses.
The governor said business, schools, and transit would all open simultaneously in any reopening and repeated his intention yesterday to open gradually across the state.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the New York State Department of Financial Services will direct health insurers to provide cash flow relief to, and ease administrative burdens on, New York State hospitals in response to COVID-19. Relief provided to hospitals during the pandemic includes insurers’ immediate payment of outstanding accounts receivables, suspension of preauthorization requirements for all hospital services, and prohibition of retrospective review of claims.
The Governor insisted on the protocol of one question at a time, not reacting to the tumult of questions until they all quieted. Then in the guilty diedown of random questions the governor reminded reporters in the “Q. & A,” who were cautioned once more that only one questioner at a time would be taken and he would go one-by-one, but did allow followup questions to the individual reporters in their first-call sequence.
It is unclear at this time the results of the medical tests on treatments that were promised Tuesday.
Finally, the Governor confirmed 5,526 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 257,216 confirmed cases in New York State. Of the 257,216 total individuals who tested positive for the virus, the geographic breakdown is as follows:
|County||Total Positive||New Positive|