ALBANY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — New York began COVID-19 antibody testing across the state earlier this week, and on Saturday Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the state will be expanding the antibody testing capacity to allow any essential worker to get tested.
At his daily COVID-19 briefing on Saturday, Gov. Cuomo announced an executive order allowing individual pharmacies in the state to start performing COVID-19 antibody testing, also referred to as diagnostic testing.
On Saturday, Gov. Cuomo also expanded the criteria on who can get the antibody test to any essential worker. The state is also working with the federal government to make antibody testing available to any New Yorker who wants one.
According to Cuomo, the federal government is working to get more antibody testing kits, and reagents to process the tests, in order to expand testing.
Cuomo said New York is already doing more antibody testing than any other nation per capita.
The COVID-19 antibody test only shows if you’ve previously been infected with COVID-19, and can not accurately determine if you are currently infected with the virus. Having widespread antibody testing will give a lot of people piece of mind when New York State decides to lift the PAUSE order.
In terms of COVID-19 numbers in the state, Governor Cuomo had more good news to report on Saturday.
The number of people hospitalized due to COVID-19 in New York State continues to decline. The number of hospitalizations has regressed to where the state was to start the month of April.
Governor Cuomo said, “We are on the downside of the mountain.”
However, the stark reality of the situation is that about 1,100 more people were hospitalized on Friday, and over 400 more people passed away from the virus.
New York’s data continues to trend in the right direction, but Cuomo said he is nervous that one day the data will say otherwise.
According to Johns Hopkins University, more than 280,000 people have been infected with COVID-19 in New York State, and over 21,000 deaths.