New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo extended the state's shutdown through May 15 to curb the spread of the coronavirus. He said he decided to continue its "New York on Pause" initiative in coordination with other states.
During Thursday's briefing, he shared data showing total hospitalizations, ICU admissions and intubation numbers have gone down. And with the infection rate declining to 0.9 percent, he said it shows the "New York Pause has worked...however, we're not there yet."
More than 600 New Yorkers died from COVID-19 on Wednesday and about 2,000 were diagnosed, which Cuomo said is "still a tragic rate."
"So we have to continue what we're doing," he said. "But, the good news is, it means we can control the virus, we can control the spread."
Beyond social distancing guidelines and the shutdown of all non-essential business, Cuomo is also requiring New Yorkers to wear a face covering or mask on public transportation, Uber and Lyft starting on Friday.
The governor said it's uncertain whether the shutdown will continue after May 15 or the state will reopen because it depends on the data. But he did say that when the time comes to reopen New York, "there will be a phased return to a new normal."