ALBANY, N.Y. (WROC) — Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that the state will invest in private companies to bring rapid COVID-19 testing to scale and accelerate testing capacity.
“We’ve been working to reduce the spread of COVID-19 through aggressive actions to reduce density, increase testing and properly equip and staff our hospitals, and we’re also looking at how to restart the economy in a thoughtful and responsible way,” Gov. Cuomo said in a press release. “This is not a light switch that we can just flick on one day and everything goes back to normal. We have to come up with a smart approach to restart the systems we shut down so abruptly, and testing is going to be one of the key components of that. We are going to continue working to get rapid testing up to scale so we can get people back to work.”
Businesses interested in working with the state to manufacture these rapid tests on a large scale should contact Empire State Development at 212-803-3100 or COVID19supplies@esd.ny.gov.
The governor also announced that the State Department of Health has developed a test to detect antibodies to the COVID-19 infection in an individual’s blood. Officials from the governor’s office say this test is an important step towards determining whether New Yorkers are developing immunity and when they could potentially return to work or school.
There are now 138,836 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New York state, up by 8,147 from last official count Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced at Tuesday’s daily coronavirus briefing.
There are also 5,489 COVID-19 deaths in New York, up from 4,758 reported Sunday. The increase of 731 deaths is the largest single day spike in COVID-19 deaths statewide, according to the governor’s office.
A Johns Hopkins University professor and her graduate student have created an interactive map to capture all confirmed COVID-19 cases, fatalities and recoveries.