Coronavirus: Trump agrees to help New York double coronavirus testing

 

Andrew Cuomo, Donald Trump, United States, New York, coronavirus, Covid-19
Governore Andrew Cuomo said on April 21 New York would aim to double the number of people it tests each day - including diagnostic and antibody tests - to 40,000.

Washington, United States - Cuomo also said the president indicated he would work to get federal funding to states in the next financial aid legislation to be passed by Congress.

By Reuters

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Wed 22 Apr 2020, 5:15 AM

Last updated: Wed 22 Apr 2020, 9:54 AM

U.S. President Donald Trump agreed to have the federal government help procure chemical reagents and other supplies needed for New York to double its testing capacity for the novel coronavirus, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday.
Cuomo, speaking at a briefing after meeting with Trump in Washington earlier in the day, also said the president indicated he would work to get federal funding to states in the next financial aid legislation to be passed by Congress.
With coronavirus-related hospitalisations trending lower in New York, Cuomo has in the past few days turned his attention to the challenge of widespread testing, which he has said would be critical to getting New Yorkers back to work.
Cuomo said Trump had agreed in their White House meeting to have the federal government take charge of securing materials that the manufacturers who supply New York's state labs have struggled to procure from overseas.
The governor added that it was up to his state to help the labs boost their testing capacity and to organise the workforce needed to take more samples from the population.
"That is an intelligent division of labour," Cuomo told the briefing. "Let each level of government do what it does best."
Cuomo said New York would aim to double the number of people it tests each day - including diagnostic and antibody tests - to 40,000. He characterised it as "an enormous undertaking" that would take several weeks, without being specific on timing.
New York, which is the epicentre of the pandemic in the United States, has reported 257,000 cases of Covid-19, the respiratory disease caused by the virus, and nearly 20,000 deaths, accounting for nearly half of the country's fatalities.
Along with other governors, Cuomo has called on the federal government to provide direct cash assistance to the states, a request that has so far gone unanswered in the stimulus packages passed by Congress.
The National Governors Association has called on Congress to grant a total of $500 billion (Dh1.8 trillion) to all states to help shore up battered finances.
New York, which is facing a $10 billion (Dh36.73 billion) to $15 billion (Dh55 billion) budget shortfall, needs the infusion of cash to pay the salaries of teachers, police officers, healthcare workers, Cuomo said.
"You know the state governments are broke," Cuomo said, adding that Trump had indicated he understood the situation and had said he would "work hard" to get funding for the states in the next round of legislation.



More news from