US COVID-19 Deaths Pass 3,000 As New York Issues Appeal For Medical Volunteers

March 31, 2020 Updated: March 31, 2020

More than 3,000 people have died from the CCP virus in the United States while over 164,539 cases have been confirmed, according to the latest data collated by Johns Hopkins University, which is tracking the global pandemic.

As of March 30, a reported 3,164 have died from the COVID-19 disease, with 914 of those deaths occurring in New York City, which has become the epicenter of the outbreak in the United States.

On Monday, New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an urgent nationwide appeal for medical volunteers to join what he called the “front lines” as he and health officials warned that the crisis unfolding in the state is just a preview of what other U.S. communities could soon face, adding that the virus “doesn’t discriminate” and that no American is immune to the disease.

“We need to recruit more healthcare workers,” he told a briefing at a makeshift hospital at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan. “We need to share healthcare professionals within this state and within this country. As governor of New York, I am asking healthcare professionals across the country, if you don’t have a healthcare crisis in your community, please come help us in New York now.”

“I don’t care if you live in Kansas. I don’t care if you live in Texas. There is no American that is immune … what is happening to New York is not an anomaly. There is nothing about a New Yorker’s immune system that is any different from any other American’s immune system. So in many ways, New York is just a canary in a coal mine.”

Before Cuomo’s appeal to medical volunteers, nearly 80,000 former nurses, doctors, and other professionals were stepping up to volunteer, while the USNS Comfort, a Navy hospital ship featuring 1,000 beds and 12 operating rooms, arrived in New York harbor to help free up room in the city’s overwhelmed hospitals to handle those who have become sick from the CCP virus.

Politico reports that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) this week deployed 85 refrigerated trucks to New York City to serve as temporary morgues, as hospitals struggle with an overflow of bodies. The additional truck space could double the capacity of city morgues, upping it from 3,500 bodies to 7,000, NY’s Medical Examiner’s Office (OCME) said.

While New York City has become the worst virus “hot spot” in the Unites States, New Orleans, Detroit and other cities also have alarming clusters, while in California, Gov. Gavin Newsom put out a similar call for medical volunteers as CCP virus hospitalizations doubled over four days and the number of ICU patients tripled during that time.

The state is hoping its initiative, dubbed the California Health Corps, will bring on board enough staff to handle an additional 50,000 hospital beds, Newsom said.

Last week the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization for anti-malaria drugs hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine to treat patients hospitalized with the CCP virus as the number of cases continues to soar.

Although yet to undergo larger clinical trials, the oral prescription drugs, have shown “activity in laboratory studies against coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19)” and “anecdotal reports suggest that these drugs may offer some benefit in the treatment of hospitalized COVID-19 patients,” according to a statement from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

President Trump also announced this week that he will be extending his administration’s “15 days to slow the spread” campaign for an additional month, meaning Americans will need to continue practising social distancing, while the elderly and high-risk individuals must stay at home.