Cuomo: May Be Forced to Close New York Parks, Primary Postponed
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced he might be forced to close New York parks to stop the spread of COVID-19. He also announced the presidential primary has been postponed and asked pharmacies to start deliveries.
Last Sunday, Cuomo said New York City must develop a plan to correct the number of people hanging out in parks.
On Wednesday, he announced the plan. Some streets in New York City will be closed to cars and open for pedestrians to walk. Cuomo also called for mandatory playground social destiny, which means no contact sports at playgrounds, including no basketball. If this doesn't work, Cuomo will be forced to close all New York City parks.
On Saturday, during a press conference, Cuomo said he's learned people are not following the guidelines when it comes to hanging out in parks and playing sports, like basketball.
"If no compliance, we will close the parks," Cuomo warned.
Cuomo announced the April 28 presidential primary in New York is moving to June 23, which is the same day as congressional and state primaries.
"Public health is our number one priority and we will carry out this vital democratic process at a safer date," Cuomo said.
Cuomo believes President Donald Trump did the right thing in invoking the Defense Production Act to have GM produce ventilators. He also said the state has ordered an alternative to ventilators, a bag valve mask. Which requires someone to push the mask for air. Cuomo noted these are not ideal, but the state bought 3,000 bag valve masks and ordered 4,000 more.
President Trump approved four new sites for temporary hospitals, one in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx, which will create 4,000 beds.
He also announced three new sites, including one in Ulster County.
Cuomo asked all pharmacies in New York to start home deliveries because of the long lines at pharmacies. Cuomo also announced some New York hospitals will become “COVID only” hospitals.
The apex of coronavirus is still forecast to be 14 to 21 days. It's projected the state will need 140,000 hospital beds and 30,000 ventilators at the peak of the virus.
"Every emergency is unique," Cuomo tweeted during the press conference. "Needs are always different. The only similarity is that what is needed is always unexpected. In this case, the unexpected need is ventilators."
The Governor noted medical systems need to start thinking "more holistically.” He also added patients downstate might be moved upstate because hospitals in the New York metro area are being overwhelmed by the virus.
Cuomo said that if you have lost track of time or feel disoriented you aren't alone. He mentioned the first positive case in New York was 27 days ago and schools closed 10 days ago.
“The overall shutdown of non-essential workers was only eight days ago," he said.