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HomeCoronavirusNew York Leaders Warn of Possible Full Shutdown – Back to NY on PAUSE

New York Leaders Warn of Possible Full Shutdown – Back to NY on PAUSE

New York Leaders Warn of Possible Full Shutdown – Back to NY on PAUSE

Mayor Bill de Blasio holds a media availability with Dr. Dave A. Chokshi, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and President and CEO Mitchell Katz, NYC Health + Hospitals. City Hall. Monday, December 14, 2020. Credit: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office.

Both Governor Andrew Cuomo and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke of how New York could return to a full shutdown much like that experienced in Spring of this year.

Both leaders made mention of the possibility during their individual press conferences today.

Keep in mind that none of this is news. The Governor had already spoken of the possibility of a shutdown a week ago when speaking of the hospital system being overwhelmed.

When asked by a reporter, the Mayor referenced the Governor’s statement during an interview over the weekend in which he spoke of the possibility of a full shutdown. Mr. de Blasio said he agreed with the sentiment.

Later in the day, the Mayor revisited the subject during an appearance on NY1’s Inside City Hall with Errol Louis. When asked about this the Mayor stated the following:

“The trajectory we are on is very troubling in terms of the number of people who get sick, the number of people we would lose, God forbid. And obviously the impact on hospitals, their ability to treat people. We’ve got to start planning on bigger actions now. I think the natural time to do that is immediately after Christmas. But look, it means only essential activity would continue. What was defined as essential in the spring, obviously grocery stores you know, supermarkets, pharmacies, takeout and delivery, that did continue in the spring. A variety of essential businesses. That’s what we would need to focus on. Folks in other types of business wouldn’t be going into their workplace. But look, what we’ve learned since the spring is the things that can be kept safe. And we’ve learned a lot about how to keep people safe. Our hospitals are much more effective than they were in the spring. It’s striking how much better they’re doing. They’re a lot safer for their employees, but they also are handling their patients better. Our schools have been an incredible success story in terms of safety. So we know some things will be different and a different approach than the spring, but the basic concept of essential work would continue, less essential work would be on pause. That’s what I think we should be anticipating.”

Governor Cuomo had the following to say early in the day:

“I have all sorts of people who are concerned, “Well, you went down to 25 percent indoor dining. You cancelled indoor dining. You’re requesting more testing for people in salons. Lower capacity in gyms.” Yes, to all of that. That is not the real problem. That is not what you should worry about. What you should worry about it shutdown because if we do not change the trajectory, we could very well be headed to shutdown. Shutdown is something to worry about. That is really something to worry about because all these businesses, closed. We go back to where we were. All non-essential businesses closed. They go to zero.

Yes, we’re trying to change the trajectory. “Well I’m upset that you’re trying to change the trajectory.” You should be happy because if we don’t change the trajectory, we’re going to go to shutdown and then your business is going to close. That, my friends, is a real problem. Worry about that because that is a real worry. Deaths are a worry and shutdown of the economy are the real worries and they are viable worries. This is not an overanxious personality. This is not far fetched. This is something to really worry about.

How do you change the trajectory? You do two things: Number one, we’re simultaneously trying to increase hospital capacity and, frankly, hospital management. We saw what happened in the spring, it can’t happen again. We’ve given the hospitals flexibility, adding 25 percent more beds and adding another 25 percent more beds or reducing elective surgery. We’ve given hospitals capacity enhancement with their flexibility. Hospital managers have to manage the hospitals well. What happened in the spring, in my opinion, and in defense of the hospital managers who I spent a lot of time talking to, it was a first case scenario in the spring. It had never happened before. I understand that. But, there was a failure to balance the patient load. What does that mean?”

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