By KWAME PEREZ
The situation in New York grew dire as Governor Cuomo predicted Thursday that the state would run out of ventilators to treat patients afflicted by the coronavirus in merely six days at the current rate of use.
“If a person comes in and needs a ventilator and you don’t have one, the person dies.”
The governor said in his daily televised press briefing that there were 2,200 ventilators in the stockpile and 350 people a day were needing one. That number “disappears very quickly”
“ There is no state and no country that hasn’t done anything to provide ventilators that we are not doing,” said Cuomo. He also said that the state has been making contingency plans and has converted CPAP machines and anesthesia machines into ventilators.
The governor said he spoke to President Trump on Thursday and although the federal government was aware of New York’s situation, Mr. Cuomo didn’t expect White House help anytime soon. “ I don’t think the federal government is in a position to provide ventilators to an extent that the nation needs them,” he said .
“ I’ll plead, I’ll do whatever I have to do to get ventilators from the federal government but that’s why we’re taking all those extraordinary measures ourselves ,” he said, “ Just assume you are on your own in life.”
New York State has 92,381 cases with 2,273 confirmed deaths and 13,383 patients currently in ICU.Every county in has at least one case of the coronavirus and over 1,000 appeared overnight in Nassau and 884 new cases in Westchester.
Construction had started on a temporary hospital in the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal and was expected to be open within a week offering 750 beds; Staten Island’s Psych Center was also being converted into a Covid-19 only hospital, he added.
In more encouraging news, over 21,000 out-of-state medical workers have volunteered their help to New York hospitals . Including local workers, a total of 85,400 volunteers were at work.
The governor’s younger brother Chris, a CNN anchor and host of Cuomo Prime Time who recently had tested positive joined the briefing remotely and said he was “doing well all things considered.” The two have become popular due to the friendly banter that they engage in.
The governor said of his brother appearing on tv and doing his show “demystifies and takes a lot of the unknown out of the equation.”