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Coronavirus on Long Island: Updates for April 21

Through a steady rain, state workers check in

Through a steady rain, state workers check in patients arriving at the drive-thru coronavirus testing site at Stony Brook University on Tuesday. Credit: Newsday / John Paraskevas

Newsday is providing all readers with access to this breaking news blog on important developments about the coronavirus and our community.

What happened:

Tuesday evening updates

Watch Gov. Cuomo's briefing on his meeting with President Trump:

Watch President Trump's briefing:

Tuesday afternoon updates

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Bellone: Slight increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations in Suffolk

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said the five-day streak of declining COVID-19 hospitalizations in the county is over: The number of those hospitalized grew by 23 over the last 24 hours, he said Tuesday. The increase means 1,434 patients were hospitalized in the county with the virus.

The county had 492 new positive cases of coronavirus, for a total of 28,154 confirmed cases, Bellone said. He added that 29 residents died of related causes Monday for a total of 888.

A total of 68 coronavirus patients have been discharged from hospitals over the last 24 hours, Bellone said.

Watch Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone's briefing:

Curran forecasts $300M revenue loss in wake of pandemic

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said Tuesday that because of the pandemic, the county is projecting a revenue loss of more than $300 million — or a forecast deficit of about $260 million — from its $3.5 billion budget.

She cited a forecast loss in sales tax revenue as central to the fiscal picture.

"We predict a 10% reduction in sales tax," she said, noting that sales tax accounts for more than 40% of the county's revenues.

From a medical standpoint, Curran said the county is asking the state to revisit permitted categories of medical procedures as the pressure from COVID-19 cases eases on the county's hospitals.

Among those to be reconsidered: surgeries for certain cancers, she said. — NEWSDAY STAFF

Curran: Number of COVID-19 hospitalizations drops again

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said Tuesday that the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the county continues to decline, with 1,999 patients hospitalized as of Monday night, or 44 fewer than the day before. There were also 458 patients on ventilators, 12 fewer than the previous day, she said at her daily briefing.

Curran said a total of 1,390 Nassau residents have died since the beginning of the pandemic, and that there has been a total of 31,079 confirmed cases.

Curran also said that three times as many police and correction personnel are cleared and back to work than are currently in quarantine. "That is very, very good news," she said. — NEWSDAY STAFF

Watch Nassau County Executive Laura Curran's press briefing:

Tuesday morning updates

Cuomo: 481 New Yorkers died from COVID-19 Monday

Comparing the fight against COVID-19 to "stamping out a wildfire," Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at his daily briefing Tuesday said 481 New Yorkers were lost to the virus on Monday.

Speaking from the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, Cuomo said, "Total hospitalizations are basically flat from where they were yesterday … intubations are down."

He added that the number of new hospital admissions for COVID-19 was 1,300 on Monday.

"That is down and that is good news," he said.

Of the 481 deaths reported, 452 were in hospitals and 29 were in nursing homes, Cuomo said.

Cuomo on Monday had reported 478 deaths from the virus since Sunday — the first time the daily death toll dropped below 500 in more than two weeks.

Cuomo on Tuesday also said the state has received so many unemployment claims that it has collapsed the system. — NEWSDAY STAFF

Watch Gov. Andrew Cuomo's press briefing:

Northwell at its lowest level since April 1

Northwell Health said Tuesday it has 2,538 COVID-19 patients at the 19 hospitals it owns and operates, including 11 on Long Island.

The 2,538 represents the fewest number of coronavirus patients at Northwell since April 1. It's also a drop of 80 patients since Monday.

"We are going in the right direction," said Terry Lynam, a Northwell spokesman.

Lynam added that LIJ-Valley Stream was the only one of its hospitals with an ICU occupancy rate of 90% or more. Also, Northwell said 64% of its 1,100 ventilators were in use. 

Separately, Mount Sinai South Nassau in Oceanside reported it had 226 COVID-19 patients Tuesday morning, down from a high of about 350 earlier in the month. But Joe Calderone, a spokesman at the hospital, warned against complacency.

"It's getting better, but it's still a significant number of patients and we are still in crisis mode," Calderone said. — DAVID REICH-HALE

Suffolk auxiliary captain dies of coronavirus, department says

A Suffolk police auxiliary captain died from the coronavirus on Sunday, the department said on its Facebook page. 

Capt. Anthony J. DeNoyior, 44, had been a volunteer with the department’s auxiliary police since September 2002 and served in the First Precinct. He is survived by his wife, Stacy, and two sons, ages 22 and 17. 

"COVID-19 has taken the lives of far too many people and now it has directly hit the department with the loss of a member in our police family," Suffolk Police Commissioner Geraldine Hart said. "Anthony DeNoyior spent close to two decades volunteering his time with the Auxiliary Police, which speaks volumes to his selflessness and love of his community. Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time." — MICHAEL O'KEEFFE

De Blasio appeals for stimulus money, warns of reopening too quickly

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called on President Donald Trump to turn his attention to expanding COVID-19 testing, and a stimulus package to help cities and states recover from the impact of the coronavirus.

De Blasio, speaking Tuesday morning on CNN, said the city has lost $7 billion in revenue — as he put it, money to pay police, firefighters and teachers — amid the crisis. He appealed to Trump to help bail out cities and states, saying that America is not going to be able to restart effectively if U.S. cities "are back on their heels."

He also defended continued social distancing in the city and the cancellation of popular parades and other events. "We have to stick with it until this disease is beaten," he said, adding later: "We have one chance to restart the right way."

He said Trump's tweets to "liberate" states such as Michigan from measures put in place to protect people from the virus are "a misunderstanding of the enemy that we are facing." — MATTHEW CHAYES

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