For all those wondering about how New York is reopening, Governor Cuomo laid out his plan to ensure safety. (Something similar is happening in all our neighboring states.) He’s using data, science, and health officials to drive decisions. I’m very grateful to him for his leadership, thoughtfulness, and his ability to put his ego and emotions aside to listen to experts. There is no other place I’d rather be now. Here’s New York’s plan in his words:
1. Businesses and industries will open in a phased approach. Phase 1 includes construction, manufacturing and select retail (with curbside pickup). Phase 2 includes professional services, finance and insurance, retail, administrative support and real estate/rental leasing. Phase 3 includes restaurants, food services and hotels. And Phase 4 includes arts, entertainment, recreation and education.
2. Upon reopening, businesses must implement new safety precautions to help lower the risk of spreading the virus. These include strict cleaning and sanitation standards, restricting nonessential travel, adapting the workplace to allow for social distancing, and requiring masks to be worn if employees are in frequent contact with the public. Read all the requirements here.
3. The special enrollment period for health insurance will remain open through June 15, 2020. New Yorkers without health insurance can apply for a plan through NY State of Health.
4. New York continues to lead the country in testing. To date, more than one million New Yorkers have been tested for COVID-19. That’s more than any other state (or foreign country). We are working tirelessly to increase testing capacity even more.
5. The number of total hospitalizations continues to fall. Yesterday, total hospitalizations fell to 9,647 from 9,786 the day before. How quickly we bring this number down depends on all of our actions, which is why we must remain vigilant and continue taking precautions to protect ourselves and others.
6. Thank you to New York’s National Guard for their efforts to increase the state’s testing capacity. The National Guard has made nearly 300,000 testing kits to collect samples, 60,000 of which are being sent this week to labs and hospitals across the state.