As of Monday, 1,000 people had died in New York. Soon, that number will be 3,000.
The coronavirus is taking lives at a devastating pace in New York, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said, with deaths nearly doubling in just three days, from 1,550 on Tuesday to 2,935 on Friday.
More people in New York were reported to have died of the virus in the last 24 hours — 562 — than in the first 27 days of March.
“It’s hard to go through this all day, and then it’s hard to stay up all night, watching those numbers come in and the number of deaths tick up,” the governor said at his daily briefing in Albany.
On Friday, for the first time, the state recorded more than 10,000 positive tests for the virus in one day: There are now 102,863 confirmed cases in New York State, up from 92,381 on Thursday. New York City has 57,159 cases — nearly a quarter of the confirmed cases in the whole country.
The number of cases in the state has almost doubled since last Friday. The number of people hospitalized and the number of patients on ventilators have both more than doubled since then.
With hospitals still in dire need of medical equipment, including ventilators, Mr. Cuomo said he was signing an executive order authorizing the state to seize and redistribute equipment and supplies from hospitals and private-sector companies that did not immediately need them.
“I’m not going to let people die because we didn’t redistribute ventilators,” he said.
He said that any equipment commandeered would be returned after the crisis. When a reporter asked whether private hospitals might raise legal objections, Mr. Cuomo answered, “If they want to sue me for borrowing their excess ventilators to save lives, let them sue me.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio, who reiterated in the afternoon that New York City would need 15,000 more ventilators to manage the pandemic in April and May, expressed his support for the governor’s order.
“This is exactly the kind of thing we need,” Mr. de Blasio said. “In fact, I would urge every state in the union to exercise the same approach.” He added that he had approved the Police Department, Fire Department and Sheriff’s Office to help seize the devices.
But Representative Elise Stefanik, a Republican congresswoman who represents a rural district that borders Vermont, said in a statement that she was “very concerned” about the order.
“I represent demographically the largest number of seniors of any District in New York,” she wrote. “This is the most vulnerable age group facing Covid-19 and needs to be considered.”
She and a number of other state and federal Republican officials later issued a joint statement opposing Mr. Cuomo’s action.
Searching for a bright spot, Mr. Cuomo said that emergency hospital admissions unrelated to Covid-19 have fallen because the virus, and the restrictions associated with it, have caused traffic and crime to drop sharply. This has made the crisis slightly less overwhelming for the health care system.
“You don’t have the same crime rate, so you don’t have the same number of trauma cases coming into the hospital,” he said.
Gov. Philip D. Murphy of New Jersey announced 4,372 new coronavirus cases on Friday, bringing the state’s total to 29,895. There were 113 new deaths reported, for a total of 646.
Mr. Murphy ordered flags lowered to half-staff across the state “effective immediately and indefinitely to honor those we have lost and those we will lose.”
At a time when people are unable to gather for funerals, Mr. Murphy said, he sought to “find some ways to acknowledge the totality of this loss.”
He cited the deaths of James Brown, the 48-year-old principal of the Grover Cleveland Middle School in Caldwell, and jazz guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli, 94, who was born in Paterson, N.J., and died in Saddle River, N.J.
There are 3,016 people hospitalized with the coronavirus in New Jersey, 1,227 of them on ventilators, officials said.
Mayor de Blasio called for a national draft of doctors.
Mayor Bill de Blasio called Thursday night for doctors and other medical workers across the country to be drafted and sent to the places where coronavirus has hit hardest — starting in New York.
“Unless there is a national effort to enlist doctors, nurses, hospital workers of all kinds and get them where they are needed most in the country in time,” Mr. de Blasio said on MSNBC Friday morning. “I don’t see, honestly, how we’re going to have the professionals we need to get through this crisis.”
Mr. de Blasio has been asking for days for military medical personnel to be sent to New York but had not sought a draft of civilian doctors before.
On Friday, the mayor said that the city would send a wireless emergency alert — usually used for extreme weather or Amber Alerts — calling on medical personnel to volunteer to fight the virus.
The hospital ship Comfort will speed up admissions.
After an outcry over the slow pace of patient transfers to the hospital ship U.S.N.S. Comfort in New York, the Navy announced Friday that it would streamline its screening process.
The 1,000-bed ship arrived Monday to treat patients who do not have the coronavirus, in order to free up space in onshore hospitals. But by Thursday evening, it had taken on only 20 patients.
Going forward, patients will be evaluated at the Comfort’s dock on Manhattan’s West Side, rather than at city hospitals, the Navy said in a statement.
And patients will no longer have to test negative for the coronavirus before being admitted to the ship, but will fill out a short medical questionnaire and have their temperatures taken.
A spokeswoman for the Navy said an updated patient census for Friday was not yet available.
On Thursday evening, Governor Cuomo announced that the Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, another alternative hospital site run by the military, would begin taking coronavirus patients, a reversal of its initial policy.
Rockland County official seeks a “containment zone” to fight the virus.
The county executive of Rockland County, N.Y., called on Governor Cuomo on Thursday to establish a containment zone around part of a town that has seen a rampant spread of the virus.
The executive, Ed Day, seeks the designation for the eastern part of the town of Ramapo, according to The Journal News.
Rockland County, northwest of New York City, has seen a higher concentration of virus cases than any place in the state besides neighboring Westchester County. It has reported 3,751 coronavirus cases, or about 1 per 88 residents — far higher than the rate in New York City — and 42 deaths.
Mr. Day offered few details on what “containment zone” would mean, but said that rules on social distancing at stores and at funerals needed to be strictly enforced.
Mr. Cuomo, who created a “containment area” in the small city of New Rochelle before statewide stay-home orders were put in place, has not publicly responded to Mr. Day’s request, but on Thursday left open the possibility of imposing curfews if municipalities seek them.
“Depends on what their problem is, what their situation is and what they’re trying to solve — and we’d have to talk through it,” he said, “I’d have to understand what the theory of their action is.”
The area where Mr. Day seeks restrictions includes the ultra-orthodox Jewish enclaves of Monsey, where a funeral this week drew a large crowd, and New Square. One Jewish leader told The Journal News the proposed zone targeted the Jewish community.
New York is renting hotel rooms for homeless people with the virus.
As of Thursday, four more people living in city shelters and one man who lived on the street had died of the coronavirus, bringing the number of in the city to 10.
Until Thursday, the deaths had been concentrated among older men living in dormitory-style shelters for single adults. But two of the most recently reported deaths were people who had been living in shelters for families.
The rate of deaths and infection among homeless people has been relatively low. But social distancing in group shelters has presented a challenge. The city is paying for about 500 private hotel rooms in an effort to isolate people who have symptoms of the virus, have been exposed to others who tested positive, or have tested positive themselves.
As of Thursday, 168 total people from shelters, from the street and from unstable housing situations had tested positive.
Steven Banks, the city’s commissioner of social services, said on Friday that his agency would rent more hotel rooms as needed.
Advocates for homeless and low-income people are asking that the city open more hotel rooms so that people can better isolate. “Every homeless New Yorker in a congregate setting or those living on the street should be afforded the same opportunity to self-distance,” said Paulette Soltani, political director of VOCAL-NY, an advocacy organization, who called for 30,000 more hotel rooms to be made available.
A Brooklyn landlord canceled rent for hundreds of tenants.
A few days after losing his job in March, Paul Gentile was throwing away trash outside his Brooklyn apartment building when he noticed a sign hanging near the front door.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, which has brought life to a near standstill in New York City and caused an untold number of people to lose their jobs, tenants in the building did not need to pay April rent, it read.
“STAY SAFE, HELP YOUR NEIGHBORS & WASH YOUR HANDS!!!” the landlord, Mario Salerno, had written on the signs, which he posted at all of his 18 residential buildings in the borough.
The sudden collapse of the economy has left many New Yorkers unable to pay bills, especially rent, and some landlords have started to panic.
But Mr. Salerno said on Thursday that he did not care about losing his rental income in April, nor did he care to calculate the amount that he would not be collecting from his 80 apartments.
“My concern is everyone’s health,” said Mr. Salerno, 59, whose gesture was first reported by the local news site Greenpointers.com. “I told them just to look out for your neighbor and make sure that everyone has food on their table.”
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Reporting was contributed by Jonah Engel Bromwich, Maria Cramer, Michael Gold, Matthew Haag, Jesse McKinley, Andy Newman, Matt Stevens, Nikita Stewart and Michael Schwirtz.