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tv   SQZ Gov. Cuomo Coronavirus Response News Conference  CSPAN  March 17, 2020 11:10pm-11:36pm EDT

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c-span.org/coronavirus. c-span's "washington journal" live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up wednesday morning, we'll discuss the latest on the coronavirus and the u.s. response to the outbreak. with the university of maryland security director michael greenberger on the state, federal and local response. efforts to slow down the spread of the virus with director drew harris of thomas jefferson university. watch c-span's "washington journal" wednesday morning at 7:00 eastern. join the discussion. >> as the federal government continues to work on the coronavirus economic aid package, governors from across the country have been providing updates on how the states are responding to the coronavirus. here are what some of them had to say starting the governor andrew cuomo.
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governor cuomo: good morning. happy st. patrick's day. i would use my brogue. mercilessly. ed but happy st. patrick's day, anyway. sporting a little green just to carry on the tradition. elatras, knows james m and dr. zufer and our budget director. let me go through an update. as you know the situation changes daily now, which is expected. this is an evolving situation. numbers ramp up. that's been the experience in every country that this has visited. so we want to make sure that you understand that as the facts change, our strategy changes,
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right? we have a plan. we're sticking with the plan. the plan adjusts or moves as the facts move. first stage was always testing. the testing is now -- first step was testing, and second step was containment. and they work together. the testing has ramped up. it's continuing to ramp up. it will be in the thousands per day that is going very, very well. the state is managing its testing capacity. we're working with the federal government on bringing on automated testing. that is all going very, very well. and the numbers are going up. containment, we've taken a number of measures, significant measures to do containment. and that is working very well. on the containment side, we had a tri-state strategy, which is highly unusual but highly
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effective. we work with connecticut and new jersey, and we announced the same rules connecticut, new jersey, and new york. why? you don't want people shopping different states because different states have different rules. you dweent people driving to connecticut or new york or new jersey because there's a different set of rules. so uniformity works. it's hard to do. but when you can do it, uniformity works. and we did that yesterday with restaurants, bars, gyms all closing 8:00 last night and staying closed today with the caveat that they could sell off-premises by delivery and the state liquor authority changed their rules to make that possible. we closed all schools. all schools are closed for a period of two weeks. and the 180-day s.e.d.
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requirement is waived for two weeks. at the end of two weeks, we may renew that period of time. but all schools have the same period. why? because once again, you need uniformity. you don't want a business having some employees in one school district that is open, and one school district is closed. so in all this disruption and all this change, try to keep it as uniform as possible and the rules as uniform as possible to the extent businesses can operate, people can live their lives. keep it uniform. my phone has been ringing off the hook with a number of local officials saying people are very, very upset. who's upset about the gym being closed? who's upset about their restaurant is closed? who's upset about the bar is
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closed? actually i've had the highest number of calls being complained about bars being closed. i don't know if that is statistically representative of anything, but that's just anecdotal. some people are upset about schools being closed. i say to the local officials and to the people of the state of new york, if you are upset by what we have done, be upset at me. the county executive did not do this. the village mayor did not do this. the city mayor did not make these decisions. i made these decisions. these were all state-ordered rules. it's not your local elected official. i made them because i believe they're in the best interest of the state. i know they cause disruption. i know people are upset. i know businesses will be hurt by this.
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i don't feel good about that. i feel very bad about that because i know we're going to have then deal with that issue as soon as this immediate public health issue is over. but my judgment is do whatever is necessary to contain this virus. and then we will manage the consequences afterwards. the old expression, the buck stops on my desk, the buck stops on my desk. your local mayor did not close your restaurants, your gyms or your schools. i did. i did. i assume full responsibility. again, these are all state-wide rules because we don't want people shopping among different jurisdictions. you close the bars in new york city, but you keep them open in nassau, all you'd see is the
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flood of cars going to the bars in nassau. so the uniformity is important. it's also important that no local government puts any rules in place without first checking with the department of health. so the department of health can make sure that they are consistent with all other rules that we're about to put in place. is gation is continuing and ramping up. there are many rumors out there, part of the fear, the anxiety, people spread rumors. well, maybe you're going to quarantine new york city. we hear new york city is going to quarantine itself. that is not true. that cannot happen. it cannot happen legally. no city in the states can quarantine itself without state
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approval. and i have no interest whatsoever and no plan whatsoever to quarantine any city. will you contain the new rochelle? we did a containment zone on new rochelle, which is actually misunderstood. nobody was contained in new rochelle. there was no cordon around new rochelle. you could come and go in new rochelle as you wanted. the containment refered to the virus. l we did in new rochelle was close the schools and close places of large gatherings. so nobody was contained within the new rochelle. and nobody is going to be contained in state. so -- in the state. so that's a deep breath moment
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and the last question is about the healthcare system. and this is where we're going to shift our emphasis. and i want people to understand what we're going to have to do with the healthcare system because that is now our top priority. and remember what we've been . ying all along everybody's been talking about flattening the curve. i've said that curve is going to turn into a wave. and the wave is going to crash on the hospital system. i said that since day one because that's what the numbers would dictate. and this is about numbers. and this is about facts. this is not about prophesies or science fiction movies. we have months and months of data as to how this virus
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operates. you can go back to china. that's now, five, six months of experience. so just project from what you know. you don't have to guess. 5,300 i.c.u. beds. right now the hospitalization is running between 15% to 19% from our sample of the tests we take. we have 19.5 million people in the state of new york. we have spent much time with many experts projecting what the virus could actually do. going back, getting the china numbers, the south korea numbers, the italy numbers, looking at our rate of spread because we're trying to determine what is the apex of that curve, what is the consequence so we can match it
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to the capacity of the healthcare system, match it to the capacity of the healthcare system. hat's the entire exercise. the quote, unquote experts -- and by the way there were no phenomenal experts in this area. they're all using the same data that the virus has shown in other countries. but they're extrapolating from that data. the expected peak is around 45 days. that can be plus or minus depending on what we do. hey are expecting as many as 55,000 to 110,000 hospital beds ill be need at that point. that my friends, is the problem e've been talking about.
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0,000 e 55,000 to 11 hospital beds and you understand the challenge. many as 37,000 i.c.u. beds, ok? an i.c.u. bed is different than a hospital bed. an i.c.u. bed has additional equipment, most notably ventilators, and they's why you hear on the news, ventilators globally.ard to get why ventilators? because we're all talking about acutely ill mainly senior citizens who have an underlying illness. they have emphysema. they're batting cancer. they have heart disease. and then they get pneumonia on top of that. that's the coronavirus. they need to be intubated.
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they need an i.c.u. bed. and that's the challenge. challenge. ains the and the numbers are daunting. what are we doing? everything we can. first, flatten the curve. continue to flatten the curve so you reduce that peak demand. we announced dramatic closings yesterday to reduce the density. it's possible we will be doing more dramatic closings. not today. but i'm talking to the other governors in the other states showing that expected flow into the hospitals -- it's clear we can't manage that flow. how can you reduce the flow? you reduce the spread. how do you reduce the spread? you close down more interaction
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among people. how do you close down more interaction? well, yesterday we closed the bars, the gyms, etc. you would continue to close down things such as businesses. italy got to the point where the only things they left open were grocery stores and pharmacies. those are essential services. but they closed down everything else. we're not there yet. but i am telling you, we have to get down that rate of spread because whatever we do on the hospital side, we cannot accommodate the numbers that demand on the hospital system. so again, we just enacted rules yesterday. we're not enacting any other rules today. but it is very possible because the numbers as you'll see in a moment are still going up. whatever rules we come up with will be statewide rules.
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hopefully, it could be done with our surrounding states because the best way to do this is uniformity, no shopping among states, among cities, among counties. everybody lives with the same rules so we don't have people on the road going back and forth trying to game the system. at the same time that you're trying to reduce the numbers coming into the hospitals, you're trying to increase the capacity of the hospitals. how do you do that? .he hospital surge capacity what is the surge capacity? getting the existing hospitals to hold more people. right now, there are rumes an regulations about how many people can be in a hospital, how many people per room, how many
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people per square feet. those are normal operating conditions. these are not normal operating conditions. we're examining the hospital system. what is the maximum capacity per hospital? if the department of health waves their spatial rules, how many people can you get into hospitals? there's a meeting today with all the hospital administrators that i've asked michael dowling and ken rasky to run. michael is a former health commissioner. michael dowling work for my father as health commissioner. he's extraordinary. ken rasky, the same, represents all the hospitals. sitting down with the hospitals saying change your headset. this is not about how you normally do business. frankly, forget the economics.
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what's the maximum number of people we can get into your hospital? and what do you need to do na that? and what equipment do you need to do that? and what staff do you need to do that? we're going back to retired staff. and we're asking them to contact at that bsite -- website health .ny.gov/assistance. we're also going to medical schools, nursing schools to get additional medical personnel. and then we're talking about temporary construction of medical facilities. obviously, when you're talking about 45 day, you have a limited -- 45 days, you have a limited capacity of what you can actually get done. but i'm working with governments and organizations all across the state right now. how do we set up temporary
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hospital facilities even if not intensive care units? you can move them into a medical care facility and then backfill the bed. we're also working with fema, the army corps of engineers and the national guard and the trays unions to help us on this issue. the numbers, total people tested to date, we're up to 10,000 people, which is obviously exponentially higher than it was and is continuing to grow. positive cases up to 1,300. new positive, 432. number of county with cases continues to grow. two other counties have been
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added to that. our cases are, again, number one in the nation. now up to of deaths, 12. 264 out of the cases are hospitalized. that's a hospitalization rate of 19% that's higher than the normal hospitalization rate, 19%. is at about again the 19% is higher. we track every case since china. a couple of other points, and then we'll take your questions. we have -- we'll open today in nassau county, a drive-thru testing office. we opened one in new rochelle.
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we'll open nassau today. we're going to open a suffolk drive-thru testing office, and we're going to open a staten island testing office. we're going to send up the paid family leave bill to the legislature today. i believe we have a three-way agreement on that it will have a provision to cover all people who are quarantined. and we will be doing that also. e'll also be opening a rocklin drive-thru testing facility. two other points. one, this is an extraordinary .ime in this nation's history it will go down in the history books as one of those moments of true crisis and confusion and chaos. i lived through 9/11. i remember the fear and the panic that existed in 9/11 where
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a single moment your whole concept of life and society can where you need to see government perform at their best. you need to see people perform at their best. everybody's afraid. everybody's nervous. how you respond, how you act, this is a character test for all of us individually. it's a character test for us collectively as a society. what did you do at that moment? -- when all around you lost their head? right? rogers can ipling. -- roger kipling. hat do you do at moment?
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what does government do? it does it better. what does government not do? it does not engage in politics or partisanship even if you are in the midst of an election season, even if you are at a moment of time in history where you have hyperpartisan, which we now have. the president of the united states, donald trump, it is essential that the federal government works with the state and that this state works with the federal government. we cannot do this on our own. i've built airports. i've built bridges. we've made this government do things that it's never done before. this government has done a somersault. it's performed better than ever before. i'm telling you, this government cannot meet this crisis without
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the resources and capacity of the federal government. i spoke to the president this morning again. he is ready, willing and able to help. i've been speaking with members of his staff late last night, early this morning. we need their help, especially on the hospital capacity issue. we need fema. fema has tremendous resources. when i wased a hud, i worked at fema. i know what they can do. i know what the army corps of engineers can do. they have a capacity that we simply do not have. who is a the hospital new yorker who i've known for any, many years. i put my hand out in partnership.
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i need your help. i want your help. and new yorkers will do everything they can to be good partners with the federal government. i think the president was 100% sincere in sing that he wanted to work together in partnership in a spirit of cooperation. i can tell you the actions he's taken, evidenced that. i know a team when they're on it. i know a team when they're not on it. his team is on it. they've been responsive, late at night, early in the morning. and they've, thus far, been doing everything that they can do. and i want to say thank you. and i want to say they appreciate it. d they will have nothing but cooperation and partnership from the state of new york. we're not democrats, and we're not republicans. we are americans at the end of the day.
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that's who we are. and that's who we are when we are at our best. this hypersensitivity about politics and reading every comment and wanting to pit one against the other, there's no time for this. the president is doing the right thing in offering to step up with new york, and i appreciate it. and new york will do the right thing in return. >> good evening. today's update since our last report, florida has seen 24 new positive cases bringing the state's total to 216,

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