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Governor Andrew Cuomo estimated that there are “thousands and thousands of cases” of the virus in New York State. According to him many people could’ve contracted the virus, had symptoms and it resolved without them knowing.
Testing and identifying positive cases can help mitigate the spread of the virus in New York. But Cuomo argued that the numbers don’t provide a full picture of the problem.
“It is not anyway representative of the sample of how many people have the coronavirus,” he said.
Meanwhile the governor learned that one of his daughters had to self-quarantine after being exposed to someone who tested positive for the virus.
Cuomo, father of three daughters, made the revelation at a press briefing Friday. His daughter isn’t ill, but he admitted he was anxious after learning she had to be quarantined.
“I had to talk myself through the reality of the situation and the facts of the situation to calm myself,” Cuomo said. “I understand fully the anxiety that people feel. But again, the facts do not justify the fear.”
He shared his story to allay New Yorkers’ fears about the virus. The state once again has the most confirmed cases in the country — 421, according to Cuomo — and 50 people have been hospitalized. Eighteen of the 50 patients are in intensive care units.
While the virus is spreading, most people who contract it will experience mild symptoms. What concerns health officials and Cuomo is the virus infecting vulnerable populations, such as seniors and those with chronic medical conditions.
Cuomo announced Thursday that visitors would be banned from New York nursing homes. Only essential personnel will be allowed in the facilities. The prohibition takes effect at 5 p.m. Friday.
Cuomo will issue executive orders to waive the 7-day waiting period to access unemployment insurance benefits for anyone who is unemployed or laid off due to the novel coronavirus.
To help local school districts that decide to cancel classes because of the outbreak, Cuomo is signing another order that will waive the 180-day requirement. Schools are mandated to be in session for 180 days in order to receive state funding.