May 17, 2020 - Health

Cuomo demonstrates live coronavirus test at press briefing

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said at a press briefing Sunday that not enough New Yorkers are getting tested for the coronavirus, even though the state has significantly scaled up its capacity.

Driving the news: Cuomo announced that New York is expanding its eligibility for diagnostic testing to include anyone who is returning to work as part of the state's "phase one" reopening — which includes people in construction, manufacturing and curbside retail.

The following categories are also eligible to receive coronavirus tests:

  • Any individual with symptoms.
  • Any individual who has had contact with someone who has tested positive.
  • Any individual who is subject to a precautionary or mandatory quarantine.
  • Any individual employed as a health care worker, nursing home worker or first responder.
  • Any essential worker who directly interacts with the public while working.

The big picture: Cuomo, who had a doctor perform a test on him live at the press briefing in order to demonstrate how "fast and easy" it is, said that New York now has 700 testing sites — many of which are only processing one-third of their total testing capacity per day.

  • "That is the whole test," Cuomo said after the doctor administered the test up his nose. "I'm not in pain. I'm not in discomfort. Closing my eyes was a moment of relaxation. There is no reason why you should not get the test. And you don't even have to be New York tough to take that test."

The big picture: New York has so far conducted 1.3 million tests, with more than 350,000 confirmed cases of the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

  • 28,232 people have died from the virus in New York, while 60,796 people have recovered.

Go deeper: Cuomo says some New York regions have met criteria to reopen

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