New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is signing an executive order mandating New Yorkers have a mask or mouth covering with them when out in public.
Every person in the state must don the covering if they are in situations where they can’t maintain “social distancing,” or six feet of distance from people they don’t live with.
Busy streets and grocery stores are two situations Cuomo used as examples.
Asked what penalty people would face for not complying, Cuomo said he doesn’t want one yet.
“I don’t want to go to a penalty yet. We haven’t seen flagrant noncompliance. If people don’t follow it, we could do a civil penalty. You’re not going to go to jail,” the governor said.
The new executive order will be enforced by local governments.
The total number of people in hospitals in the state dropped for the second day in a row. Hospitalizations dipped to 18,335, a drop of over 362 from the previous day, despite 2,253 new COVID-19 admissions.
The number dropped because there were more discharges than admissions.
Hospitals also recorded drops in intensive care admissions and intubations.
Seven hundred fifty-two new deaths were reported, including 707 patients in hospitals and 45 in nursing homes. The death toll climbed above 11,000.
New York has by far the most cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in the United States from COVID-19, which is caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, a novel coronavirus that emerged from mainland China last year.
While officials are working on a plan to reopen the state from its near-total lockdown, Cuomo said he believes the current situation won’t end until a vaccine is developed. A vaccine isn’t expected until 2021.
Another way might be existing treatments being proven through testing and clinical trials, the governor said, citing convalescent plasma and hydroxychloroquine as examples.