For the second straight day, New York has set a record for the number of deaths tied to novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in a single day as signs continued showing the state is "bending the curve" in the number of new cases.
There were 779 new COVID-19 deaths in New York, a day after there were a then-record 731 deaths, bringing the total in New York State to 6,268 since the outbreak began, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced during his daily press briefing on Wednesday, April 8.
“The number of deaths is going to continue to rise as those hospitalized for the longest periods pass away,” he said. “The longer you are on a ventilator, the less likely you are to come off the ventilator.
“I understand the science of it … I understand the facts of it … but it’s still incredibly difficult to deal with. Every number is a face. Every number is a family. That’s been painfully obvious to me every day.”
Cuomo made note that during the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, 2,753 lives were lost in New York City. More than 4,000 have now died in New York City due to COVID-19.
Cuomo ordered all flags to be flown at half-mast statewide to “honor those who we have lost to the virus.”
“We’re flattening the curve, thank God, and thanks to a lot of good people who have been working very hard. But that’s just a moment in time, we can’t get complacent,” he said. “I went through 9/11, and I thought in my lifetime I’d never have to see anything that bad or anything that tragic again.
“I remember the number of funerals after 9/11 and the grief after 9/11, and that this will eclipse that in terms of the number of dead in this state is almost unimaginable to me.”
Cuomo said the curve is flattening because more are practicing social distancing and other measures than ever before, but if they stop, "it will go the other way in 27 minutes."
“The curve is flattening because we are flattening the curve by what we are doing,” Cuomo said. “We’ve taken dramatic actions to close down schools and businesses, and it’s working. So far. If we stop doing what we’re doing, we’ll see that number go up. The curve is a function of what we’re doing day in and day."
Cuomo said that it’s key that New Yorkers don’t get complacent, and continue what they’re doing to ensure that the numbers stay steady and begin to slowly drop.
“This is not about going back, it’s always about going forward, and that’s what we have to deal with here," he said. "We’re learning from what we’ve experienced and we’re growing and moving forward.
“We’ve been killing ourselves in isolation, and the good news is we’re seeing the benefit and flattening the curve at a lower rate than any model projected.
“But we are still in the middle of this and when you look at the terrible news at how many lives we’ve lost, it’s breathtaking. Look at the number of people we’ve lost. Remember that before you decide to go out of the house because you have cabin fever.”
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