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Cuomo says daily hospitalizations and death toll at lowest level since mid-March

Cuomo gives update on coronavirus hospitalizations
Cuomo says coronavirus hospitalizations at the same rate as the day shutdown order began 11:48

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Sunday that the rate of coronavirus hospitalizations and the death toll has dropped to the lowest level since mid-March, when the shutdown began and before the state became the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak. Cuomo said 207 people died Saturday, down from 226 deaths the day before.

Nursing homes accounted for 43 of those deaths. On Sunday, Cuomo said all nursing home staff will now have to be tested twice a week. He said if a nursing home cannot provide adequate care for patients who test positive for the coronavirus, the facility must transfer the patient to a facility that can — if they cannot find one, they must call the Department of Health, which will help them find another facility.

Cuomo also said nursing homes cannot readmit coronavirus patients after they are discharged from the hospital until they test negative for the virus. He said any nursing home that does not follow the new order will lose its license. 

The governor said two additional children have died from a mysterious illness that could be linked to the coronavirus; three other deaths from Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome were previously confirmed. There are up to 85 children who have become ill from this rare disease. An investigation is ongoing.

"This is every mother's nightmare. This is every parents' nightmare. No one knew about it. Nobody was watching for it. It's the same story with this virus from day one," Cuomo said at Sunday's press conference.

Cuomo said some areas of the state can begin reopening as early as May 15, if they meet certain criteria, including data indicating the spread in the area is under control; in addition, whether the area can handle hospitalization and contract tracing if the coronavirus rate increases once again.

On Friday, Cuomo signed an executive order that extended the authority to "continue the suspensions and modifications of law, and any directives, not superseded by a subsequent directive," until June 6, according to CBS Albany affiliate WRGB-TV

Meanwhile, Cuomo again appealed to the federal government to pass an economic stimulus to support state and local governments. While encouraging Washington lawmakers to bail out "working" families rather than corporations, Cuomo proposed an "Americans First" law that companies must rehire all their employees to receive a bailout. 

"There should be no subsidy for any corporation that lays off employees, period," the governor said. "Government should not subsidize their reduction of employees."

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