New York State’s Phased Reopening Plan Could Be Accelerated
Gov. Andrew Cuomo initially said each phase in New York's reopening plan will last at least 14 days. He now believes moving from one phase to the next could happen quicker, or take longer.
Last week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced regions can start to reopen on May 15 if a number of guidelines are met. Once a region meets the criteria to reopen businesses will reopen in four phases. Each phase will last two weeks.
Cuomo initially said each week will at least two weeks. The New York State reopening guidelines also states each phase will be at least two weeks.
On Monday, Cuomo said moving from one phase to the next "will be determined by the facts and the numbers as we go along."
On Tuesday, he said the 14-day minimum gap between phases could be adjusted. Cuomo said 14 days is a "preliminary estimate."
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"That is the period of time where if you have an infection outbreak, you will know it in 14 days," Cuomo said.
Cuomo added that if testing shows the virus isn't spreading you can accelerate reopening.
"If your testing is not moving, you aren't getting any hospitalization increases, if nothing is moving then you could say 'we are in good shape, let's accelerate," Cuomo said Tuesday during his COVID-19 briefing.
He said it's up to local governments in each region to adjust or "turn off the valve" in terms of the reopening process if the COVID-19 infection rate goes up during the reopening process.
He hopes it doesn't happen but says New York will have to scale back on reopening if there is another spread of the virus.
"Calibrate intelligently the reopening. Hopefully, you never have to close again. And you keep those margins where hopefully you can manage them," Cuomo said. "Sorry to keep coming back to the valve, but I'm a visual person. Watch those gauges. Those gauges stay down, open the valve."