NY records 783 deaths from Covid-19 on Friday, second highest in pandemic
Governor sees hopeful signs as deaths plateau, intubations decrease
New York State suffered another day on Friday with nearly 800 deaths from Covid-19, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said today.
With 783 reported deaths from Covid-19 on Friday, the state has now lost 8,627 people to the virus.
That is five straight days over 700 with 731 on April 6, 779 on April 7, 799 on April 8, 777 on April 9 and 783 on April 10.
The only good news in the numbers is the death rate seems to have reach a plateau, Cuomo said.
“It is stabilizing at a horrific rate,” he said at an 11:30 a.m. news conference. “These are just incredible numbers depicting incredible loss and pain.”
He is hopeful those grim statistics will show a declining death rate. He noted that untubations at hospitals across the state for Covid-19 were down on Friday.
“That’s a very good sign,” he said.
The governor has currently closed schools and nonessential businesses until at least April 29. He acknowledged there is pressure to reopen businesses and restart the state’s economy.
But Cuomo said the state needs more widespread testing with a quick turnaround first.
He quoted Winston Churchill, the British prime minister during World War II: “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”
He worries there could be a second wave of the virus if the state moves too quickly to reopen businesses and schools. He urged New Yorkers to stay vigilant with social distancing and staying home as much as possible.
The governor was asked if he is open to serving as president, a vice presidential candidate, or in the cabinet at the White House. Cuomo told reporters he won’t pursue any of those positions.
“I’m not running for anything,” he said. “I’m governor of New York State and that’s where I’m going to stay.”
The governor said he has not considered politics in the response to the pandemic.
“The best thing we have done to date is we have kept politics out of it,” he said.
Cuomo offered praise to President Trump for his attention to the state.
“The president has been responsive to New York State and he has done it quickly,” Cuomo said. “He has really responded to New York’s needs.”
The governor has criticized the federal CARES stimulus bill for not doing enough for the state. He said a new stimulus is needed to make up for huge revenue shortfalls for the state and local governments.
He also called on Congress and the president to eliminate the SALT provision that capped the federal deduction on local and state taxes at $10,000. Removing the cap would help New York taxpayers, Cuomo said.
The state will be convening a task force to look at a timeframe for reopening businesses. Cuomo wants a coordinated reopening that continues to protect public health.
“Reopening is a public health question and an economic question,” he said. “I’m unwilling to divorce the two. Don’t ask the people of the state or country to choose between lives lost and dollars gained.”