This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to people who have been keeping an eye on the state’s new interactive map. Given the fact that the Capital Region and four other regions in New York State have not yet met the seven criteria needed to begin their phased reopening, Governor Andrew Cuomo has extended the work-from-home order until May 28 for those five regions. (The other regions still on lockdown include Long Island, the Mid-Hudson region, New York City and Western New York.) “There’s no politics to this judgement,” said Cuomo of the extension of the lockdown order for those regions. “There’s no arbitrary nature to this judgement. It’s all on the numbers.”
The announcement was made during Cuomo’s daily press briefing on May 15.
The seven criteria in question include: a 14-day decline in hospitalizations (or a three-day average of less than 15 new hospitalizations); a 14-day decline in hospitalized deaths (or a three-day average of under five new ones); a three-day rolling average of under two new hospitalizations for every 100,000 residents; the share of total hospital beds available is under the 30 percent threshold; the share of total ICU beds available is under the 30 percent threshold; 30 residents per 1,000 that are being tested monthly (seven-day average of new tests per day); and 30 contact tracers per 100,000 resident (or to meet the current infection rate).
Whereas earlier in the week, it looked as though the Capital Region might be on the cusp of beginning its phased reopening—it had just one criterion left to accomplish—that soon backslid to two. And both criteria are the type that potentially require a two-week sample size: the 14-day decline in hospitalizations and 14-day decline in hospitalized deaths.
Cuomo was quick to note that if a region reaches the aforementioned benchmark in the middle of the latest extension, it would be able to break the lockdown order and begin its phased reopening.
Regions that have been given the green light to reopen as of today (May 15) are Central New York, the Finger Lakes, Mohawk Valley, North Country and Southern Tier.