New York State could face a second shutdown if the current trajectory of Covid-19 metrics does not change, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Monday.
Cuomo said that the current trajectory shows that by January, there could be 11,000 patients in hospitals due to Covid-19 and an additional 3,500 dead.
“The increase in hospitals could overwhelm some hospitals in some regions if nothing changes by January. That is the problem we are looking at," Cuomo said.
Cuomo identified Erie, Monroe, Central New York, and particularly New York City as areas of concerns.
“New York City is different, there is more density,” Cuomo said. “We know how fast it takes off in New York City.”
Addressing the concerns of business owners who are unhappy with current capacity rates, Cuomo said that people should be more worried about a shutdown if the current trajectory doesn’t change.
“We go back to where we were, all nonessential business closed, they go to zero.” Cuomo said. “Yes we are trying to change the trajectory, you should be happy, if we don’t change the trajectory then we are going to close.”
In order to avoid another shutdown, Cuomo said that two things need to be done:
- Increasing hospital capacity and hospital management
- Slowing the spread of the virus in people’s homes, which accounts for 74% of transmission
“It’s difficult to stop during the holiday season,” Cuomo said. “I think of it as a footrace between holiday spread and hospital capacity and vaccination critical mass. The problem is experts say vaccination for the critical mass isn’t for six to nine months.”
Cuomo said New York state today conducted what he believes was the first vaccine administered in the United States.
“We are in the process of administering 10,000 vaccinations today," Cuomo said.