NYC could stay partially closed until August, phased reopening could take up to 2 months

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NYC could stay partially closed until August as it’s revealed the full phased reopening plan could take TWO MONTHS

  • There are four phases to the reopening and Cuomo is advising that each should happen two weeks apart 
  • New York City is not expected to reopen before June, meaning the full process will take until August to complete 
  • Other regions are ready to open on Friday, May 15, when the governor’s statewide shutdown ends 
  • NYC still has too many people in hospitals and not enough contact tracers
  • There is confusion over the city’s data; Mayor Bill de Blasio’s numbers for reopening requirements are more promising than the state’s 
  • It is not yet clear which set of data will be used to gauge when reopening can begin 
  • In New York City, there have been nearly 15,000 deaths and 183,000 cases of the virus  

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New York City may not fully reopen until August after Gov. Cuomo advised that each phase of the four phase restart plan could take up to two weeks to implement. 

Parts of the state of New York will be ready to reopen on May 15, this Friday, after meeting Governor Cuomo‘s strict set of seven requirements. 

They are the Finger Lakes, Mohawk Valley and the Southern Tier. Central New York and North County are the next best performing and are due to reopen soon afterwards. 

Once a region hits all seven requirements, they can begin the first phase of reopening which is to allow construction and manufacturing jobs back to work and allowing curbside retail. 

Phase two is professional service and real estate, phase three includes restaurants and phase four is entertainment and education. It’s unclear where beauty services and gyms sit in the structure. 

Cuomo has not set hard and fast rules for how long a region must give each phase before starting the next but he advised on Tuesday that a 14-day period would allow officials to see whether another outbreak has begun. 

That means that if New York City starts phase one on June 1 – the most optimistic target given by Mayor de Blasio – the full process won’t be complete until July 31.  There were 195 new deaths across the state on Monday, bringing the total death toll to 21,835, and there have been more than 337,000 cases. 

Only three regions of New York are ready to open on Friday. The others have not yet met all of Cuomo’s requirements 

Cuomo's data says that New York City is not yet ready because its daily new hospitalization data is not where it needs to be, nor are the number of hospital beds it has free. The state says the city is on track to meet its target of having 2,250 contact tracers but only 525 have been hired so far

Cuomo’s data says that New York City is not yet ready because its daily new hospitalization data is not where it needs to be, nor are the number of hospital beds it has free. The state says the city is on track to meet its target of having 2,250 contact tracers but only 525 have been hired so far

De Blasio's data for the city (as of Monday) says that the city has reached the number of daily new hospitalizations it needs. It's unclear whose data will be used

De Blasio’s data for the city (as of Monday) says that the city has reached the number of daily new hospitalizations it needs. It’s unclear whose data will be used 

Runners on the West Side Highway walkway on Tuesday, May 12. The city will remain closed until it has met reopening requirements

Runners on the West Side Highway walkway on Tuesday, May 12. The city will remain closed until it has met reopening requirements 

In New York City, there have been nearly 15,000 deaths and 183,000 cases of the virus 

Data collated by the state government says that New York City currently only meets four of the seven requirements, by Cuomo’s standards.  

Crucially, it says that the city has not yet hit the goal of reducing new daily hospitalizations to below two people for every 100,000. In New York City, that number is 168. 

But according to data compiled by the city health department, that target was reached on May 7. 

Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday that only 55 people had been admitted to hospitals on Saturday with suspected COVID-19 cases, and that not all were confirmed. 

The city still does not have enough ICU and hospital beds free, and it also does not yet have enough contact tracers. 

Of the 2,250 that are needed, de Blasio said on Tuesday that only 525 had been hired and they are currently in training. He said the city has received more than 7,000 applications for the roles and that they were going through them ‘rapidly’. 

To get the jobs – which pay between $57,000 and $65,000 – applicants must have a background in healthcare. Their job will be to phone the contacts of people who test positive and tell them that they may have come into contact with the virus. 

Cuomo said on Tuesday that the city was expected to meet its target of hiring 2,250 by May 15 despite the current shortfall.  

The first phase of the reopening is to allow manufacturing and construction jobs back to work and to reopen retail on a curbside basis. 

Then, professional services will be able to return to offices but only if they submit plans that prove how they will enforce social distancing. 

It will then be down to local authorities to enforce the rules, Cuomo said. 

On Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio, who has been even more cautious than Cuomo since the beginning of the pandemic and who called for a shutdown before it was implemented, said New York City would remain closed until June unless ‘something miraculous happened’. 

Once each region reopens, it will have a ‘control room’ to monitor a potential second outbreak. 

Cuomo uses the analogy of a valve to explain how a region should gradually reopen by incrementally loosening it and watching the infection rate to see how it is affected. 

If the infection rate goes beyond 1.1, it means another outbreak is happening.  

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