As Governor Cuomo’s press conferences have been increasingly highlighting a plateau in COVID-19 hospitalization and ICU rates, New Yorkers have been awaiting the next steps for reopening.
And now they are here. The Governor released a detailed plan on his website earlier this week, and the main takeaway is that the reopening will be in phases, with the timing of each phase to be determined by regional analysis across the state.
The CDC recommends that a region may begin re-opening measures once they have consistent 14-day decline in hospitalization rates. Along with that, the State is keeping a close eye on the infection rate and the number of positive antibody tests, which will also help them determine appropriate times for reopening.
Here is what the phases look like once a region has met that 14-day decline requirement (as copied from the published release). They will take at least two weeks in between each phase to monitor the effects it has had on hospitalization rates, etc. to make sure they are not increasing.
Open construction and manufacturing functions with low risk. Though he has not set any specific dates in motion yet, he said on Sunday (April 26) that these construction businesses may be able to reopen in upstate regions that were the least effected by the outbreak after May 15 (when the NY ‘PAUSE’ order is set to go until).
Open industries based on priority and risk level. Businesses considered “more essential” with inherent low risks of infection in the workplace and to customers will be prioritized, followed by other businesses considered “less essential” or those that present a higher risk of infection spread.
As the infection rate declines, the pace of reopening businesses will be increased.
As the businesses reopen, they will be required to take new measures to protect employees and consumers, including a safer workspace and disinfectant processes that will lower the risk of infection. The state is consulting with local leaders in each region and industry to formulate these plans.
Other key takeaways:
- The region is not allowed to open any attractions or businesses that would draw a large number of outside visitors
- The plan will be carried out in coordination with nearby states (including New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, etc.).
- The plan also will include the reopening of transportation systems, parks, schools, beaches and businesses with special attention on summer activities for downstate, public housing and low-income communities, food banks and child care.
If you want further details, you can read the full plan on the State website here.
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