US virus Task Force expresses concern over situation in NY

Updated: Mar 26, 2020, 09:11 IST | Agencies | Washington

New York City has seen at least 53 deaths and about 5,000 new cases within 24 hours on Tuesday (US time)

Doctors test hospital staff with flu-like symptoms for  COVID-19 in New York on Wednesday. Pic/AFP
Doctors test hospital staff with flu-like symptoms for COVID-19 in New York on Wednesday. Pic/AFP

Expressing 'deep concern' over the rising number of the novel Coronavirus cases in New York and its metropolitan area, members of the US Coronavirus Task Force have urged all those who have left the city in the last few days to self-quarantine themselves to prevent the spread of the deadly disease.

New York saw at least 53 deaths and about 5,000 new cases on Tuesday. The city has so far reported more than 25,000 COVID-19 cases and 210 fatalities.

According to Worldometer, a website which compiles COVID-19 cases, nearly 10,000 new Coronavirus cases were reported across the country on Tuesday alone, taking the total number of infections to around 54,000, while the number of fatalities surged by 150 in a day, bringing its total to about 700.

"The White House Coronavirus Task Force is calling on any of American first and foremost if you are in the New York City metropolitan area or elsewhere to take the guidelines that we issued and avoid non-essential travel.

"But for anyone in the New York metropolitan area who has travelled, our task force is encouraging you to monitor your temperature, be sensitive to symptoms, and we are asking anyone who has travelled out of the New York City metropolitan area to anywhere else in the country to self-isolate for 14 days," Vice President Mike Pence, who is leading the task force, told reporters at a White House news conference on Tuesday. Describing New York as a high-risk area, Pence said that they will continue to surge resources because of the spread of the disease in the city.

Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo warned Tuesday of 'troubling and astronomical numbers' in the rate of COVID-19 infections in New York, saying they were doubling every three days.

"We haven't flattened the curve and the curve is actually increasing," he told reporters. "We are not slowing it. And it is accelerating on its own," he said. "One of the forecasters said we were looking at a freight train coming across the country. We're now looking at a bullet train." Cuomo said New York state had surpassed 25,000 known cases of COVID-19, with 14,900 in densely populated New York City. At least 150 people have died statewide.

55,041
Confirm COVID-19 cases in the US

Calls for national lockdown in the US

A top American daily has called for lockdown in the US to combat the Coronavirus pandemic. According to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus tracker, there are at least 55,041 confirmed cases of the novel Coronavirus in the United States and over 700 people have died. "The worst of the pandemic is yet to come. Listen to the medical experts. It's time for a national lockdown," The New York Times said in its lead editorial.

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