Governor Cuomo introduces two phase plan to reopen businesses, upstate would open first

Governor Cuomo updated the media on Sunday on COVID-19, including the latest number of deaths in the state, and introduces a new two phase plan to reopen businesses.

Posted: Apr 26, 2020 1:58 PM
Updated: Apr 27, 2020 9:05 AM

ALBANY, N.Y. - During his Sunday afternoon press briefing on COVID-19, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced 367 more people died in New York State due to coronavirus on Saturday.

The total number of deaths in the state now stands at 16,966.

Cuomo says the 367 deaths number is down from 437 on Friday. Thursday's toll was 422. There were 438 on Wednesday, 474 on Tuesday and 481 on Monday.

Cuomo says the numbers continue to decline and he is now talking about reopening businesses, but doing so in a two phase plan.

Phase I would involve construction and manufacturing activities, and within construction and manufacturing, those businesses that have a low risk would open first, "There’s a range of construction activities, there’s a range of manufacturing activities, but those businesses that pose a low risk with them."

Cuomo says the earliest Phase I can begin is May 15th.

Phase II would involve other businesses, but the Governor didn't give too many details on what will take place, only to say Phase II will be on a more business my business analysis, "Using the metrics that we have discussed, how essential does a service provide and how risky is that business. If you were to open that business, how much risk are you possibly incurring and how important is it that that business re-open, and that matrix will be guiding us through phase II. In phase II, when we get there, we need businesses to do that analysis. They have to think about how they’re going to reopen with this "new normal", what precautions are they going to take in the workplace, what safeguards are they going to put into place, so it’s very much up to businesses. Then we’re going to leave two weeks between phases so that we can monitor the effect of what we just did."

Cuomo says a team of individuals he has put together is working with businesses across the state to come up with a plan to reopen and he says that team has been working with businesses for a couple of weeks now, "We need them to be creative and think outside of the box and we have been talking to business leaders across the state."

The Governor says there are three criteria that will be analyzed for Phase 1 to begin and once Phase 1 begins, that same criteria will be looked at before Phase II can begin.

The three criteria are 14 straight days in the reduction of hospitalizations, plus an analysis of antibody testing and diagnostic testing on a regional basis. The Governor says both types of testing are about to be increased so we can get a better picture of what the infections rate is, "Monitoring the number of hospitalizations, the number of positive antibody tests, the number of positive diagnostic tests, you take these activities and you watch those three dials. You open phase I, you watch those dials and then you watch the rate of transmission."

The number of consecutive days of decreasing hospitalizations needed is 14 because 14 days is the length of the incubation period of the coronavirus.

Cuomo says the the 'three dial' approach will give the best look at how COVID-19 is at any one time, including after opening some businesses, "Every hospital in the state on a day-to-day basis gives us their hospitalization rate, that is dial 1. Dial 2 is the antibody testing which we are now bringing up to scale in a large number state-wide and regionally. Antibody tells you how many people were infected within a two week lag, that’s the second dial. The third dial is diagnostic testing, state-wide and by region. Those three dials, they give you the rate of transmission which is how fast a virus is spreading. Without testing you only have one dial, you have a hospitalization dial. Antibody test and the diagnostic test give you a higher level of information by region."

Cuomo says because of the numbers, upstate will be able to open up first, "Downstate is going to be more complicated. Coordination has to be a coordinated effort with New York, New Jersey and Connecticut."

When asked about giving people a specific date of reopening, he responded, "Not really comfortable getting too far ahead of ourselves. Do you want to talk about a two week window, that’s an intelligent window to talk about."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1619924

Reported Deaths: 47264
CountyCasesDeaths
Queens2073098698
Kings2060299023
Suffolk1602923054
Nassau1459852896
Bronx1411745821
Westchester1061292081
New York1012503863
Erie644141594
Richmond561741564
Monroe52122980
Rockland38138886
Orange36334720
Onondaga32151622
Dutchess21968406
Albany20620328
Oneida19583475
Niagara15156313
Broome14521335
Saratoga11796145
Schenectady10740177
Ulster9898227
Rensselaer8902131
Putnam824486
Chautauqua7257122
Chemung6408130
Oswego595689
Ontario573188
Steuben5463137
St. Lawrence538381
Cayuga533388
Jefferson472463
Sullivan468959
Herkimer4534106
Wayne442564
Genesee4372118
Cattaraugus435176
Madison380684
Clinton350726
Livingston348455
Tompkins342742
Columbia336094
Fulton327281
Montgomery3137105
Cortland311260
Allegany286981
Warren280755
Wyoming278549
Tioga277956
Greene260970
Orleans243380
Chenango239769
Otsego230743
Washington229552
Lewis204630
Franklin200812
Seneca157453
Delaware147833
Essex132826
Schoharie118312
Yates101126
Schuyler85712
Hamilton2792
Unassigned219119
Out of NY0191
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