Mar 24, 2020 - Health

Cuomo pleads with federal government to supply New York with ventilators

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called on the federal government on Tuesday to supply ventilators, saying the state is in dire need of tens of thousands of machines to manage the coronavirus outbreak. The state expects to receive about 4,000 ventilators per Vice President Mike Pence.

Why it matters: New York state has become the U.S. epicenter of the pandemic, with 25,665 cases, and Cuomo said time is running out to wait on domestic production of medical supplies.

Cuomo said there are two methods to obtain the ventilators, recommending the U.S. government either use the federal Defense Production Act or that Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar tap into the federal stockpile to provide 20,000 machines.

"I understand the federal government's point that many companies have come forward and said we want to help, and General Motors and Ford and people are willing to get into the ventilator business. It does us no good if they start to create a ventilator in three weeks or four weeks or five weeks. We're looking at an apex of 14 days. ... The [Defense Production Act] can actually help companies because the federal government can say, 'Look, I need you to go into this business. I will contract with you today for x number of ventilators. Here's the startup capital you need.' ... Not to exercise that power is inexplicable to me."

What's happening: The state has 7,000 ventilators and needs 30,000. New York already mandated nonessential businesses close and ordered residents to stay home.

  • “I will take personal responsibility for transporting the ventilators” elsewhere in the country after New York reaches its apex, Cuomo said. “I’ll send ventilators, I’ll send health care workers, our professionals.”

Editor's note: This story was updated wit Vice President Pence's statement that New York will receive 4,000 ventilators in the next two days.

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By the numbers: 73 New Yorkers died from coronavirus in the past 24 hours, and 200 people tested positive. Hospitalizations and intubations also decreased.

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

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By the numbers: More than 98,900 people have died from the novel coronavirus and over 1.6 million have tested positive in the U.S. Over 384,900 Americans have recovered and more than 14.9 million tests have been conducted.

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidance over Memorial Day weekend outlining when Americans can stop self-isolating after contracting the novel coronavirus.

Why it matters: Nearly all states across the U.S. have relaxed stay-at-home orders to jumpstart economic reopenings, per a New York Times analysis. As more Americans venture outside their homes, they have to decide what precautions they're willing to take, and what they'll do to protect others.