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NYC Just Had Its First Day With No COVID-19 Deaths Since March

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A woman wearing a mask walks the Brooklyn Bridge in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak on March 2...
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New York was once the epicenter of the coronavirus in the U.S. Now, it registered its first day since March with zero deaths from COVID-19

As the coronavirus pandemic picks up speed across much of the U.S., New York stands as a beacon of hope for what we can accomplish with a coordinated approach to public health and flattening the curve. In the early days of the pandemic, NYC was the nation’s epicenter, and hundreds of people died there each day. But over the weekend, the state had its first day since March with zero deaths from COVID-19.

This is according to preliminary data from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the numbers could still change due to reporting delays. Officials recorded no deaths from COVID-19 on Saturday, and two on Friday. But even if a handful of deaths trickle in for Sunday, it’s still hopeful and encouraging to see how far New York has come since it was the epicenter of the pandemic in the U.S. and even the world.

It was a turning point for New York, where residents have embraced wearing masks and social distancing after seeing early on just how devastating this virus can be. Overall, NYC alone has recorded 215,924 cases and 18,670 confirmed deaths. There have also been an additional 4,613 probable cases. On April 7, New York City hit its peak for daily deaths with 597 people losing their battles with COVID-19.

Despite New York’s progress, though, the virus is absolutely ravaging other parts of the U.S., which remains one of only a handful of countries in the world not to have any control over its outbreak. On Sunday, the same day as New York’s hopeful milestone, Florida smashed previous nationwide records by recording more than 15,000 confirmed new cases in a single day. 45 people also died in Florida on Sunday, bringing the state’s pandemic-related deaths up to 4,346. And as case numbers have begun to tick upward in more than 40 states, including some that had previously flattened or reduced their infections, daily average deaths in the U.S. began to move upward over the weekend for the first time since April.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was hesitant to celebrate New York’s victory over the virus, since the U.S. as a whole is failing so miserably to contain it.

“You’re going to see our numbers and the Northeast numbers probably start to increase because the virus that you see now in the South and the West — California has real trouble — it’s going to come back here,” he said. “It is going to come back here. It’s like being on a merry-go-round. It’s totally predictable. And we’re going to go through an increase. I can feel it coming. And it is so unnecessary and so cruel.”

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