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N.Y. Coronavirus Death Toll Jumps to 385, Gov. Cuomo Warns Number Will Rise

Andrew Cuomo speaks to the media in New York City, March 23, 2020. (Mike Segar/Reuters)

New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Thursday that the state’s Wuhan coronavirus death toll had jumped by 100 over the past 24 hours, reaching a total of 385 victims.

Cuomo warned that the death toll will rise as patients who remain on ventilators for 20 days or longer succumb to the illness.

“The longer you are on a ventilator, the more probability of a bad outcome,” Cuomo told reporters at a press conference. “We’ve had people on for a very long time and they haven’t gotten better, and they are passing away….Since we still have a large number of people on ventilators for a long period of time, the experts expect that number to continue to increase.”

New York has become an epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. As of Thursday, state officials reported 37,258 confirmed cases, with over 20,000 cases in New York City alone.

Of the state’s patients, 5,327 have been hospitalized and 1,290 are in intensive care units. New York City’s hospitals have begun to overflow this week with coronavirus patients, with medical personnel reporting shortages of beds and protective gear. The reports of shortages stood in contrast with Cuomo’s Thursday remarks that the state possessed enough protective gear for medical personnel “for the foreseeable future.”

On Tuesday, Cuomo warned that the outbreak in New York could foreshadow outbreaks in other parts of the U.S.

“New York is going first. We have the highest and the fastest rate of infection. What is happening to New York is going to wind up happening to California, and Washington state, and Illinois,” Cuomo said. “Where we are today, you will be in three weeks or four weeks or five weeks or six weeks. We are your future.”

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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