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Dr. Marc SiegelFox News, a medical analyst and professor of medicine at the NYU Langone Medical Center, told Fox News on Wednesday that New York hospitals are already “stretched” with patients “overflowing with service.”
“The general image of New York City hospitals is that they have many more patients than expected or do not know what to do and it is impossible to develop isolation or quarantine under these circumstances, “said Siegel.
He added that staff at New York hospitals are already underprotected, although the Department of Health and Human Services has 600,000 masks and is preparing to send more N95 respirators.
Of all the medical shortages facing New York City – the national epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic – Dr. Siegel believes that personal protective equipment and greater testing capabilities are the most pressing needs of the city.
Siegel, who has been in contact with public health officials, said a public-private coalition is raising about $ 1 trillion for medical supplies. Through the coalition, the federal government will press for the production of approximately 640 million N95 respirators; usual production is around 220 million per year.
He also suggested trying to produce more surgical masks, but stressed that masks should not replace respirators.
Siegel said the government is trying to emphasize a private-public approach combined with deregulation.
The second major shortage facing New York City is the coronavirus test. The city has “restricted” testing for those with only mild symptoms in order to limit exposure in hospitals, according to Siegel, who said: “We need a swift implementation of the swab ‘self-test and wide use of blood tests.’ Siegel said that blood tests are less invasive and easier to administer with precision.
Siegel expressed optimism that 4,400 fans are expected to arrive in New York soon. The city regularly has at most 6,000 fans.
However, Governor Andrew Cuomo has requested that 30,000 fans be dispatched to the state, and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city may need 15,000 fans before the pandemic stops.
When asked if such estimates were premature, Siegel said that about 3% of coronavirus patients needed the intensive care unit and that half of them (1.5% of the total of patients) needed ventilators.
“The fact is, you do the math – 30,000 ventilators would serve approximately 1 to 2 million patients in New York State with coronavirus,” he said.
Currently, New York State has at least 26,376 cases of coronavirus, more than the whole of France and almost half of the cases in the United States. The state has suffered at least 271 deaths related to the disease.
New York City accounts for well over half of the state’s cases, with 15,597, an increase of 44.9% since Monday.
In the United States, cases have exceeded 55,000 and deaths have exceeded 800.