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NY Gov Cuomo says rapid testing is the key to reopening economy

NY Gov Cuomo says regular rapid testing is the key to quickly reopening ‘COVID safe’ office buildings, entertainment venues and restaurants – as he vows to open hundreds of pop-up test sites to try and get back to normal

  • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says regular rapid testing across the state is the key to quickly reopening the economy
  • Cuomo said the state planned to open hundreds of rapid testing sites that would allow New Yorkers to get tested before going to an event or a business 
  • He said major landlords have already agreed to offer rapid testing services on a regular bases to tenants in their buildings 
  • Cuomo said the state piloted its rapid test strategy at the Buffalo Bills NFL game last Saturday where all 7,000 fans were tested before entering the stadium 
  • Cuomo also announced the launch of New York Arts Revival – an initiative that will see pop-up performances in state parks and ‘flexible venues’ 
  • Amy Schumer, Chris Rock and Hugh Jackman are among the big names who have signed on to be part of the initiative 

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says regular rapid testing across the state is the key to quickly reopening ‘COVID safe’ office buildings, entertainment venues and restaurants that have been forced to shut because of the pandemic. 

Cuomo announced on Tuesday that the state is working to put in place hundreds of pop-up rapid COVID testing sites as part of his plan to reboot the shattered economy. 

He made the comments during day two of his virtual State of the State address but did not offer up a timeline of when he expected it to happen.  

A day earlier, Cuomo had finally conceded that New York’s strict lockdowns couldn’t remain in place until the COVID vaccine hit critical mass because there would be ‘nothing left to open’.

Gov Cuomo announced on Tuesday that New York state is working to put in place hundreds of pop-up rapid COVID testing sites as part of his plan to reboot the shattered economy

Cuomo announced on Tuesday that the state is working to put in place hundreds of pop-up rapid COVID testing sites as part of his plan to reboot the shattered economy

Cuomo announced on Tuesday that the state is working to put in place hundreds of pop-up rapid COVID testing sites as part of his plan to reboot the shattered economy

Cuomo noted during his address that rapid testing could be the answer to allowing restaurants to remain open for indoor dining in hot spot areas. 

He banned indoor dining in New York City last month due to rising COVID cases and has not given a timeline for when it can resume despite pleas from restaurant and bar owners who have been forced to close. 

‘Testing is the key to reopening our economy before the vaccine hits critical mass. Rapid testing poses great possibilities. It can be completed in as little as 15 minutes,’ he said. 

Cuomo said the state planned to open hundreds of additional rapid testing sites that would allow New Yorkers to get tested before going to an event or a business. 

He said rapid testing could allow Broadway and other entertainment venues to reopen. 

‘With this new network of rapid testing locations, a customer can stop into a new rapid testing facility, get tested, and 15 minutes later be cleared for dinner or a movie,’ he said. 

He said major landlords have already agreed to offer rapid testing services on a regular bases to tenants in their buildings. 

‘Office buildings are the engines of our economy. Bringing workers back safely will boost ridership on our mass transit, bring customers back to restaurants and stores and return life to our streets,’ he said. 

Cuomo said the state piloted its rapid testing strategy at the Buffalo Bills NFL playoff game last Saturday where all 7,000 fans were tested before entering the stadium. 

Cuomo noted during his address that rapid testing could be the answer to allowing restaurants to remain open for indoor dining in hot spot areas. He banned indoor dining in New York City last month due to rising COVID cases

Cuomo noted during his address that rapid testing could be the answer to allowing restaurants to remain open for indoor dining in hot spot areas. He banned indoor dining in New York City last month due to rising COVID cases

He said rapid testing could allow Broadway and other entertainment venues to reopen. Cuomo said the state planned to open hundreds of additional rapid testing sites that would allow New Yorkers to get tested before going to an event or a business

He said rapid testing could allow Broadway and other entertainment venues to reopen. Cuomo said the state planned to open hundreds of additional rapid testing sites that would allow New Yorkers to get tested before going to an event or a business

‘All early indications suggest this model was successful and it poses great possibilities to reopen events to the public.

‘Why can’t we use rapid testing to open restaurants in orange zones? Theaters? Offices? There are so many options.’ 

In a bid to boost the hard-hit entertainment industry, Cuomo announced the launch of New York Arts Revival – an initiative that will see pop-up performances in state parks and ‘flexible venues’ beginning next month.

Amy Schumer, Chris Rock and Hugh Jackman have signed on to be part of the initiative. 

‘The show will go on. The fans will be back. And New York will be New York again. We will go to performances and we will applaud like never before,’ Cuomo said. 

It comes after he opened up the state’s vaccine eligibity to essential workers and individuals over the age of 75 on Monday. Previously, only healthcare workers and nursing home residents could receive the vaccine. 

He has come under fire for handing out just 43 percent of the state’s vaccine doses after a month-long vaccination campaign. 

So far, the state has used 600,000 of its 1.4 million doses and has vaccinated just over three percent of the population. 

Meanwhile, COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths across New York state continue to rise. 

The number of cases linked to the ‘super COVID’ variant first detected in the UK is also increasing across New York with Cuomo confirming that eight more cases had been identified in the state, bringing the total up to 12. 

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