White House Calls For 14-Day Quarantine For All Leaving New York

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The White House urged anyone who has been in New York to self-quarantine for 14 days to stop the spread of the coronavirus, which has become widespread in the city.

“You may have been exposed before you left New York,” Deborah Birx, the State Department doctor who is advising Vice President Mike Pence, said at a White House news conference on Tuesday. “Everybody who was in New York should be self-quarantining for the next 14 days to ensure that the virus doesn’t spread to others.”

Pence said the federal government was “surging resources” to the New York area, including 4,000 ventilators in the next 24 hours.

“We have to deal with the New York City metropolitan area as a high-risk area,” he said. “I want the people of New York City and greater New York to know that we’re with you.”

Many New Yorkers are “understandably” seeking to flee the city as the outbreak grows there, said Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. About one per 1,000 of them are infected, he said, a rate eight to 10 times more than elsewhere in the country.

“Which means that when they go to another place — for their own safety — they’ve got to be careful; monitor themselves if they get sick, bring it to the attention of a physician; get tested,” he said at the news conference on Tuesday.

Cuomo, Trump Spar

Earlier Tuesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo lashed out at President Donald Trump for relying on corporations to fast-track the manufacture of life-saving ventilators.

“You can’t do this on a voluntary basis,” Cuomo said during a news conference at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, which is being converted into a temporary hospital. He warned that many victims of Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, will die needlessly without ventilators.

“You pick the 26,000 people who are going to die,” he said.

Cuomo called on Trump to use his authority under the Cold War-era Defense Production Act to compel manufacturers to make ventilators and provide seed money to retrofit factories.

“Not to use that power is inexplicable to me,” he said. “It’s not anti-business. The businesses would welcome it. I speak to the businesses, you know what they say? ‘I’ll do it, but I need startup capital.’”

Trump responded during a Fox News “virtual town hall” on Tuesday, saying that Cuomo should have foreseen the outbreak in 2015, when the president claimed — without citing a source — that the city had the opportunity to obtain 16,000 ventilators. In the same Fox News event, Trump defended his own government’s struggles to expand testing for the virus by saying no could have predicted it.

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