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New York hospitals are cleared to allow visitors, but under these requirements

June 17, 2020 Marina Villeneuve Associated Press
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New York hospitals can now allow visitors at their discretion, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.

Hospitals must follow state guidelines, which include time limits on visits and requirements that visitors wear protective gear, Cuomo said. Visitors also will be subject to symptom and temperature checks.

“Obviously we need to be careful,” the governor said.

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Cuomo pointed to signs that the coronavirus is no longer spreading at an overwhelming pace in New York, which saw a peak of over 700 deaths a day in mid-April of people who tested positive for COVID-19.

Cuomo said 25 individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 died Monday in hospitals and nursing homes.

The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients continued to decline to roughly 1,500 Monday, and fewer than 2 percent of people who are getting tested for COVID-19 each day testing positive.

“You want to talk about congratulations and something to celebrate, that is something to celebrate,” Cuomo said.

Medical personnel wearing personal protective equipment worked in the COVID-19 medical screening annex at NYC Health + Hospitals Metropolitan on Wednesday. Photo: John Minchillo/AP

The governor announced the U.S. Open will be played in Queens from Aug. 31 to Sept. 13, but without fans in attendance.

Still, the governor cautioned that a slightly higher percentage of New Yorkers are testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies in Long Island, New York City and some parts of upstate New York.

Cuomo was comparing a sample of antibody tests completed by May 1 to the latest survey of 12,000 individuals as of June 13. Overall, about 13.4 percent of New Yorkers have now tested positive for antibodies, compared to 12.3 percent as of May 1.

“These are numbers that local communities should pay heed to,” Cuomo said. “In New York City, it’s not good to see the number going up but it’s manageable.”

Cuomo on Wednesday announced that New York City would be cleared to begin the second phase of reopening on Monday. Phase Two allows for outdoor dining, as well as real estate rental and leasing, retail, administrative support and professional services to resume.


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