Virus death toll drops to 5 in NY, once the US epicenter
NEW YORK (AP) — Five people died Saturday from the coronavirus in New York state, the lowest daily death toll the state has reported since March 15.
Saturday’s total compared to 13 fatalities the day before as the number of fatalities caused by the virus continues to plummet in the state. During the peak of the pandemic in April, nearly 800 people were dying a day from coronavirus.
“We are on the exact opposite end,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
New York still leads the nation in COVID-19 deaths with nearly 25,000, according to the state’s official tally, which doesn’t include people who likely died of the disease.
Meanwhile, fewer than 900 patients were hospitalized Saturday for COVID-19, down from a peak of over 18,000 in April.
The governor cautioned that the numbers could spike again if New Yorkers let down their guard down and fail to follow social distancing and mask-wearing requirements.
“I’m now afraid of the spread coming from other states because we are one country and people travel,” Cuomo said. “I’m afraid the infection rate in the other states will come back to New York and raise that rate again.”
Confirmed daily infections in the U.S. hit an all-time high of 40,000 on Friday, prompting officials in Texas and Florida to reverse course and close down bars in their states again.
U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar stressed that “the window is closing” for the U.S. to take action to effectively curb the coronavirus.
CATHOLIC MASS RESUMES
Cardinal Timothy Dolan on Sunday celebrated the first public Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral since the coronavirus pandemic began.
The storied cathedral was limited to 25% capacity and social-distancing guidelines outlined by state officials.
Dolan thanked the congregation for its perseverance and joked that more than a dozen collections would be taken to make up for the missed Sundays.
“Where have you all been these last 14 weeks?” Dolan quipped. “Am I ever happy to see you.”
The church continues to livestream daily Mass on its website.