NEW YORK, May 11 (Sputnik) - Some regions across the US state of New York may start partial reopening as the pause order put in place to curb the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) transmission expires May 15, Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a press briefing on Monday.
“We started a new chapter - May 15 is the end of the statewide closure,” Cuomo said. “And now we can intelligently turn towards reopening… and local regions, all across the state, should start to prepare for it and people as well.”
Last week, Cuomo outlined seven metrics that each region in New York must meet to proceed with the first phase of reopening, following more than eight weeks of economic shutdown.
Under the plan, numbers of new COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths must demonstrate a 14-day decline, while hospitals should have at least 30 percent of beds available, and robust COVID-19 testing and tracing must be in place.
As of Monday, all seven metrics have been met in the Finger Lakes, the Southern Tier and Mohawk Valley out of the 10 regions of New York.
These regions, Cuomo said, might start reopening construction, manufacturing and retail businesses for curbside pickup, as outlined under the first phase. The effects of such partial reopening will be evaluated for two weeks, and if indicators are not showing any negative signs, regions will be allowed to proceed with the next step.
The second phase will reopen finance and real estate businesses. The third phase will see the return of restaurants and hotels, followed by arts, entertainment and education.
New York City has met only four out of seven criteria for reopening. The city is yet to secure the needed number of available hospital beds and Intensive Care Units.
It also needs to see a decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations and well as to employ enough contact tracers to track all cases of the infection in the city.