New York has only six days’ worth of ventilators left.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said on Thursday that at the rate the state is using ventilators for coronavirus patients, it only has about six days before it runs out.
“If a person comes in and needs a ventilator and you don’t have a ventilator, the person dies,” Mr. Cuomo said at his daily briefing in Albany. “That’s the blunt equation here. And right now we have a burn rate that would suggest we have about six days in the stockpile.”
The governor said that there were 2,200 ventilators in the state’s stockpile and that about 350 new patients a day need them. At that pace, he said, “2,200 disappears very quickly.”
Mr. Cuomo said that he had spoken to President Trump on Thursday and that while he was sure “the federal government would do anything they can do to help,” he did not think New York could count on the White House to address the shortfall in time.
“I don’t think the federal government is in a position to provide ventilators to the extent the nation may need them,” he said. “Assume you are on your own in life.”
Mr. Cuomo said, however, that the state had been making contingency plans. It is trying to buy ventilators on the open market and converting BPAP machines — another kind of respiratory device — for use as ventilators. Unused ventilators from hospitals in upstate New York could also be trucked to New York City and the surrounding area as needed, he said.
“We have all these extraordinary measures that I believe if push comes to shove will put us in fairly good shape,” he said.
At the briefing, the governor also noted a “troubling” surge of over 1,000 new virus cases in Nassau County on Long Island overnight. The county now has over 10,000 confirmed cases.
Other daily statistics from the governor:
Deaths in New York State: 2,373, up 432 from 1,941 on Wednesday. New York now accounts for 42 percent of the 5,708 virus-related deaths in the United States.
Confirmed cases: 92,381 in New York State, up from 83,712. New York City has nearly 52,000.
Hospitalized in New York State: 13,383, up from 12,226.
In intensive care in New York State: 3,396, up from 3,022.
In more positive news, Mr. Cuomo said that 21,000 medical workers from outside the state had volunteered to work in New York hospitals. Including workers from New York, more than 85,000 health care professionals, many of them retirees, have raised their hands.
And Mr. Cuomo’s brother, Chris, a CNN anchor who is infected with the virus, called in to the briefing via video and said he was “doing pretty well, all things considered.”
Four N.J. cities enact strict lockdown measures.
Mayor Ras J. Baraka of Newark announced Thursday that his city and three neighboring New Jersey communities were enacting aggressive measures to slow the spread of the virus.
In “Operation Lockdown,” as the effort is called, police will patrol the borders between Newark, Orange, East Orange and Irvington, and other areas, to reduce traffic between the four cities.
Other patrols are focused on breaking up gatherings outside stores, in parks and on corners. Violators will face summonses and legal action, Mr. Baraka said. The crackdown will last seven days and could be extended.
Mr. Baraka said in a statement that people traveling back and forth between the cities, which are all in Essex County, were “making all of our neighborhoods unsafe, so we are going to have the police from our individual communities patrolling the borders to keep them from entering.”
From Monday night into Tuesday morning in Newark, the authorities issued 161 summonses and closed 15 businesses, the State Police said. The next night, the police issued 125 summonses and closed five businesses.
There have been 2,617 confirmed cases of the virus and 99 deaths in Essex County as of Thursday. Only Bergen County, the state’s most populous county, has had more.
New Jersey’s death toll doubled in two days.
With 182 new deaths since Wednesday, New Jersey’s death toll from the virus more than doubled, to 537, in two days, Gov. Phil Murphy said on Thursday.
“I know these numbers are stark — they are certainly sobering,” he said.
With another 432 deaths in New York State reported on Thursday, the death toll for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut now stands at 2,995 — more people than were killed at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
The state now has over 25,000 confirmed cases of the virus, with 3,500 people testing positive since Wednesday, the governor said.
Mr. Murphy spoke after touring a 250-bed field hospital at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus that is expected to open on Monday. The state is building similar hospitals in Edison and Atlantic City.
Mr. Murphy also announced that he had signed an executive order authorizing the state police to commandeer medical supplies.
And he noted that six people in the state had been criminally charged with assaulting law enforcement officers by spitting or coughing on them and claiming to have the virus. He called them “the first members of ‘Knucklehead Row.’” Offenders face fines of up to $10,000 and up to 18 months in jail.
A New York City Housing Authority retiree ticked off his running tally: an ex-wife sick, a daughter sick, and three old friends dead. In Queens, a young poet learned a friend’s parents are in the hospital, one on a ventilator.
And Qtina Parson of Parkchester in the Bronx gave a grim reversal of the cheerful family updates one expects from the proud mother, sister and aunt that she used to sound like just a couple of weeks — a lifetime — ago.
“My nephew — sick, he’s 28,” she said. “Him and his girlfriend. My sister-in-law, she’s 46, she had it.” Her son, Marcus, 18, is with relatives in South Carolina, where he has developed a fever and a cough.
New Yorkers have watched in helpless fear as the coronavirus, with dizzying speed and ferocity, truly took hold of the city in recent days.
With almost 1,400 dead, many have already lost someone in their circle. And almost everyone now knows someone who is sick.
The rising number of cases has conversely shrunk the private worlds of some eight million individual people. It is as if the microscopic enemy, once an abstract nuisance, seemed to be closing in, its arrival announced with the now-constant peal of the ambulance siren.
Law schools want new graduates to practice without passing the bar.
The deans of New York State’s 15 law schools issued an extraordinary plea, asking the state’s highest court to allow students graduating this year to practice law without taking the bar examination.
The court, the Court of Appeals, announced last week that it was canceling the bar exam that had been scheduled for July because of the virus pandemic. On Tuesday, the court said the exam would be rescheduled for September.
In the meantime, the court said, it would consider letting lower courts authorize law school graduates working under licensed lawyers to practice law in limited circumstances.
The law school deans, in a letter sent Wednesday, asked the court to do more.
“Delay in the admission of our 2020 graduates to the New York bar,” they wrote, “is likely to cause our students profound harm in a time already marked by suffering, intensifying financial hardship and exacerbating the unfairness of their plight.”
The deans asked the court, at a minimum, to grant all students graduating this year provisional authorization to practice law for 18 months. If they do not pass the bar exam by then, the permission would be rescinded.
The deans also made a more ambitious request: that the court consider letting graduates working under licensed lawyers “seek admission to the bar without sitting for the bar examination.”
More N.Y.C. inmates are being quarantined.
Three weeks after the virus was first detected in New York City’s jails, including Rikers Island, four in 10 inmates were being held in quarantine as the number of cases continued to rise.
The latest quarantine figures were released late Wednesday by the city’s Board of Correction, which monitors the city’s jails.
Correction officials said separately that as of Thursday morning, 223 staff members, 231 inmates and 38 health care workers assigned to the jails had tested positive for the virus.
Inmates were now being screened for symptoms before being arraigned, board officials said.
Officials have moved to release about 900 detainees from the jails in the past two weeks to stem the virus’s spread. But inmates and correction staff members have said that conditions at the jails were still unsanitary.
Inmates have found inventive ways to protect themselves, using diluted shampoo as a disinfectant and alcohol pads from a jail barber to sanitize phones.
Jail workers have complained about not having access to protective gear like masks and gloves, and about what they said was a failure to notify them when they had come into contact with a someone who had been infected.
Three state hospitals in N.Y.C. will handle only virus patients.
At SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, the operating rooms have been freed up and the cafeteria has been turned into a medical ward. On Mr. Cuomo’s orders, the hospital is to begin treating virus patients exclusively, and officials have been told to make way for hundreds of such patients.
“We’re really scrubbing the deck,” said Dr. Wayne J. Riley, the president of the hospital, which is part of the State University of New York system and among Brooklyn’s largest employers.
The number of virus patients at the hospital is already nearing 200, Dr. Riley said, and the SUNY Downstate expects up to 150 more. Patients with other ailments will be transferred to either the Navy hospital ship Comfort or to makeshift wards at the Javits Convention Center.
The governor has designated two other state facilities, South Beach Psychiatric Facility in Staten Island and Westchester Square in the Bronx, for virus patients specifically.
As at other hospitals in New York City, the virus has taken a toll on SUNY Downstate, where resources are running low and doctors and nurses continue to get sick.
Even in normal times, the hospital has struggled. It is chronically underfunded and has not had serious capital improvements since it was built in 1963.
SUNY Downstate serves a population that is among the city’s poorest, with high rates of the conditions that can increase the risk of dying of the virus, including obesity, diabetes and hypertension.
“I’m concerned that this pandemic will exacerbate health care disparities for the patients we serve,” said Dr. Riley, who is in his third year as the hospital’s president. “The pandemic has a particular predilection for patients like ours.”
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Reporting was contributed by Kevin Armstrong, Anne Barnard, Jonah Engel Bromwich, Alan Feuer, Michael Gold, Virginia Heffernan, Corey Kilgannon, Adam Liptak, Andy Newman, Jan Ransom, Andrea Salcedo, Nate Schweber, Michael Schwirtz, Matt Stevens and Michael Wilson.