Mar 27, 2020

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Good afternoon: Today's PM — edited by Justin Green — is 424 words, a 2 minute read.

  • I hope you and your loved ones have a safe and peaceful weekend.

🚨Breaking: President Trump has invoked the Defense Production Act to require GM to prioritize ventilator production. Earlier today, GM announced a partnership to accelerate ventilator production.

1 big thing: New York's race against the clock

Inside the Javits Center in NYC. Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

With much of America ground to a halt, the state of New York is trying to nearly triple its hospital capacity in less than a month.

  • Why it matters: The state is bracing for a peak in coronavirus hospitalizations in mid-April, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said today.
  • The governor wants 8 temporary hospitals set up in short order, in addition to dramatically expanding the number of beds at existing hospitals and other facilities, including the renowned Javits Center in New York City.

The startling numbers, per Reuters:

  • 519 New Yorkers have died of coronavirus, an increase of 134 since yesterday.
  • The state has 44,635 confirmed cases, including 7,400 reported since yesterday.
  • Nearly 1,600 of those patients are in ICUs, up 22% from yesterday, the N.Y. Times reports. Most of those patients are on ventilators.
  • Hospitalized cases are doubling every 4 days. Last week it was every 3.
  • The state has 53,000 hospital beds. It wants 153,000 before the apex.
Screenshot of Cuomo press conference

The big picture: New York needs "20 million N-95 masks, 30 million surgical masks, 45 million exam gloves, 20 million gowns and 30,000 ventilators, all astronomical amounts compared to New York’s current stockpile," the Times reports.

The bottom line: As cases mount in other states — and until manufacturers can catch up — states will be forced to compete for precious ventilators.

  • On an individual level, this may feel like a moment to despair.
  • But there is something you can do, if you are able: Stay home and help buy time for America's manufacturers to catch up.
Photo: Bryan R. Smith/AFP/Getty Images
Bonus: Pic du jour
Photo: Yara Nardi/Pool/AFP/Getty Images

Above: An empty St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, where Pope Francis presided over a moment of prayer.

Below: A closer view of Pope Francis.

Photo: Yara Nardi/Pool/AFP/Getty Images
2. Catch up quick
  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 585,040 — Total deaths: 26,819 — Total recoveries: 129,812.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 97,028 — Total deaths: 1,475 — Total recoveries: 816.
  3. Federal government latest: President Trump has signed the historic $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill, which the House passed earlier today.
  4. State updates: Nearly 200 cities reported a desperate need for face masks, ventilators and other medical equipment.
  5. World updates: Italy reported 969 coronavirus deaths, the country's deadliest day.
3. 1 helpful thing: "Baby Shark" remix

"Baby Shark" is making a comeback to teach good hygiene to combat coronavirus, AP reports.

Image: Pinkfong via AP
  • The “Wash Your Hands With Baby Shark” video includes a dance challenge to encourage families to upload videos of their children washing hands to the song.
  • “Wash your hands/doo doo doo doo doo/Wash your hands,” go the new lyrics. “Grab some soap/doo doo doo doo doo/Grab some soap.”


Mike Allen