The hospital ship USNS Comfort docked at Pier 90 on the Hudson River
The governor pledged unity; no politics, no partisanship, no division
Number of deaths in the state rose from 965 to 1,218
Westchester had 807 new cases bringing its total to 9,326
Total new hospitalized patients dropped from 1,175 to 1,014
ICU admissions in the state rose from 282 on Saturday to 315 on Sunday
Michael Israel, president and CEO of the Westchester Medical Center and Kenneth Raske, president of the Greater New York Hospital Association and Michael Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health, were among the hospital officials who met with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo today and agreed to immediately begin bringing together public and private hospitals throughout the state into a joint system as needed to handle the COVID-19 crisis.
Both Israel and Raske were among those at a Monday afternoon briefing that Cuomo held at the temporary hospital facility that has been set up at the Jacob Javits Center. That facility started receiving its first patients today.
Cuomo had just come from the Hudson River waterfront where he viewed the arrival of the hospital ship USNS Comfort. Both the Comfort and the Javits facility are taking non-COVID-19 patients in order to lighten the load and allow traditional hospitals to focus on coronavirus patients. The move also is designed to help reduce the chances of patients being exposed to the virus.
Cuomo has been pressing for the private hospital system, the public hospital system, the downstate hospitals and the upstate hospitals to combine resources as necessary beginning tomorrow. The idea would be to prevent any one hospital from being overrun with patients while making more efficient use of empty beds and available staff and equipment. Raske said they had already started to do that.
“We’re going to work as one cohesive family system throughout New York and New York is beyond the city itself, including the island area as well as Westchester,” Raske said. He said he thinks what will be seen is balance within the system.
“With each day that goes on, the stress points will increase and as a result that balancing is absolutely essential,” Raske said. He said they will be putting together a hospital command center to coordinate the use of resources and feed information and instructions.
Cuomo said that health care workers and other resources needed to be shared not only within New York state, but among all of the states.
Cuomo said that while he thanks President Trump for commenting in an interview on Fox News about a poll that said people are pleased with Cuomo’s leadership in the crisis, he was not going to “take the bait” and get into a political back and forth with Trump.
Cuomo said that he has made it very clear now and in the past that he has no interest in running for president and emphasized that, in his view, this crisis is a time for leadership and not politics.
“I am not engaging the president in politics. My only goal is to engage the president in partnership,” Cuomo said. “This is no time for politics. Lead by example. I’m not going to get into a political dispute with the president. I’m not going to rise to the bait of the political challenge.”
Cuomo said, however, if Trump is doing the wrong thing for New York or the wrong thing for the country, he would speak up.
“Forget the politics. We have a national crisis. We are at war. There is no politics. There is no red and blue. It is red, white and blue,” Cuomo said. “Let’s show a commonality, and a mutuality and a unity.”
Cuomo was asked about a comment by Trump in which he seemed to be suggesting that health care workers were stealing protective masks, gowns and other personal protective equipment (PPE) and selling it in a black market.
At a White House briefing on Sunday, Trump said, “Where are the masks going? Are they going out the back door?” He continued, “I think it may be worse than hoarding, but check it out.”
Cuomo said, “The president suggested that PPE equipment may be ‘going out the back door.’ In terms of the suggestion that the PPE equipment is not going to a correct place, I don’t know what that means. I don’t know what he’s trying to say. If he wants to make an accusation, then let him make an accusation.”
Cuomo reported there have been 1,218 deaths in New York state as a result of the virus. The total of identified cases stood at 66,497. Nationally, there were 149,924 cases identified.
Cuomo said that statewide there are 9,517 people currently hospitalized, 2,352 patients in intensive care units and 4,204 patients have been discharged from hospitals
Westchester had 9,326 cases. There were 2,511 in Rockland, 1,435 in Orange, and 392 in Dutchess. New York City had 37,453 cases.