TODAY'S PAPER
Good Evening
Good Evening
NewsHealthCoronavirus

Another 1,700 nursing home deaths

State underestimated death toll

The tally by the state Department of Health for the first time includes people believed to have been killed by the coronavirus before their diagnoses could be confirmed by a lab test.

Statewide, at least 4,813 people have died from COVID-19 in the state's nursing homes since March 1, 1,700 more than previously reported, according to the latest figures.

That number includes 457 residents who died in Nassau nursing homes and 593 in Suffolk nursing homes, increases from Friday's state counts by 306 and 317 respectively.

The new numbers confirm what elder care advocates, family members and even nursing home operators have suspected — that the state’s original list of deaths severely underestimated the havoc that COVID-19 had wreaked at nursing homes.

The numbers as of 3 p.m.: 37,152 confirmed cases in Nassau, 35,275 in Suffolk, 176,874 in New York City and 321,192 statewide.

The map below shows which Long Island communities have the highest concentration of cases.

Search the map and view charts showing the latest local trends in testing, hospitalizations, deaths and more.

A note to our community:

As a public service, this article is available for all. Newsday readers support our strong local journalism by subscribing.  Please show you value this important work by becoming a subscriber now.

SUBSCRIBE

Cancel anytime

Long Islanders turn to bartering

A tray of eggplant parm set out on front steps, swooped up by a man in a mask. Bottles of beer left on a porch, and fresh-smoked pastrami placed on a wooden bench. Flour and lettuce trading hands, albeit gloved hands.

These are the waymarks of a practice taking root on Long Island in recent weeks: The barter of goods and services among neighbors, what economists call “a coincidence of wants" during a global pandemic.

“I haven’t gone to the supermarket, and we’re always out of 15 things,” said Randy Shain, a one-man bartering dynamo who is the nexus of a trading ring in Port Washington. "I’ve traded everything from coffee to dry herbs to Easter candy to homemade tomato sauce, and I’m up to eight or nine people.”

More antibodies testing options 

Laboratories, urgent care centers and other medical facilities around Long Island are offering more options for people who want to be tested for coronavirus antibodies even if they are not essential workers.

At the same time, the FDA announced a crackdown on commercial COVID-19 antibody tests amid questions about their accuracy and marketing.

“We unfortunately see unscrupulous actors marketing fraudulent test kits and using the pandemic as an opportunity to take advantage of Americans’ anxiety,” according to a statement by the FDA.

The questionable tests were probably kept out of the New York market because of the state’s strict protocols, said Dr. Dwayne Breining, executive director of Northwell Health Labs.

On the sixth week, he shucked oysters

What does man do on the sixth week of self quarantine? Why shuck oysters, of course. That's how food critic Scott Vogel spent his day when he heard a local restaurant in Wantagh was giving them away, making use of food that would otherwise have been throw away amid low sales attributed to COVID-19.

Vogel, sporting a mask and holding a tape measure to ensure he followed social distancing, seized the opportunity to finally try his hand at shucking for the first time. Watch the video to see how it went.

Five Dollars for the Front Line

Searching for a way to support those working the front lines, Gabby Postiglione and her teammates recently lent helping hands to their club lacrosse coach, a health care worker at NYU Winthrop Hospital, and her colleagues.

“Our team donated food to her group there,” said Gabby, 14, an eighth-grader who played lacrosse at Manhasset Middle School. “They told us they weren’t getting enough food and barely have enough time to eat. It was really easy to help them out.”

Once Gabby realized the impact her team made, she and her older brother Luke, 20, a former Manhasset boys lacrosse player who also played his freshman season at Boston University, recognized an opportunity to continue making a difference.

The siblings began a fundraiser called Five Dollars for the Front Line, which provide meals for health care workers — while also supporting local restaurants — for as little as $5. So far, they've raised $5,038 and provided meals for 615 workers across four hospitals.

More to know

Fourteen pop-up food banks will be coming to the Town of Hempstead, which is using $2 million that it received in federal stimulus aid to fund efforts to feed an increasing number of hungry families.

Henry Schein Inc., Long Island's largest public company by revenue, is cutting jobs, trimming work hours and suspending its 401(k) match to manage costs during the outbreak.

Filthier beaches, clogged roadways and a dirtier environment could be the consequence of litter from used surgical gloves, face masks, sanitizing wipes and other PPE donned and doffed, or improperly discarded into the recycling stream, by everyday people to minimize coronavirus transmission.

Northport's John W. Engeman Theater will remain closed until at least June 30 with its spring production, "Sister Act," postponed, while the Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, which announced last month it was terminating all of its employees, rehired two.

Golfers who require a cart to play have largely been shut out of the reopening of Long Island’s golf courses, and they aren’t happy about it.

News for you

Not everything is canceled. From concerts and craft fairs to yoga and museum tours, Long Island's social events have moved online. Check out our calendar to find something to fill your time.

Where's your stimulus check? More than half of the 150 million Americans eligible for an economic relief payment from the federal government have received their money, but if you're among the millions more still waiting for their share, here are some tips to help track your check.

A free meal. You can score a free lunch this week from Shah’s Halal, a street-food cart turned chain that is offering the promotion as it celebrates opening its 11th Long Island branch.

On your mark, get set. Spring road races are canceled or postponed, but you can sign up for virtual running clubs and runs that provide some of the thrills of a road race, without the dangers of a crowded field.

Teach kids something new. Magic tricks. Cooking. A new language. If your kids are bored, set them up with one of these virtual classes.

To the Class of 2020. Graduation will no doubt look very different for this year's seniors, but they'll be getting at least one commencement ceremony. Former President Barack Obama will deliver a televised prime-time message for the class during an hourlong event on May 16 that will also feature LeBron James, Malala Yousafzai and Ben Platt, among others. 

Plus: Join us for our latest free webinar tomorrow at 10 a.m. in partnership with the Long Island Association. Business and real estate experts will discuss what renters and homeowners need to know, how to work with your landlord or bank during the pandemic and more. Reserve your spot.

Get real-time updates about the virus' impact on the Island by visiting our live blog, and watch our latest daily wrap-up video, which includes officials discussing the criteria and timeline for reopening.

Commentary

When humility reigns over bluster. Humility is a good word to think about as the world grapples with the coronavirus, Michael Dobie writes in his latest Newsday Opinion column.

The fight has been humbling, perhaps most so for those who don’t recognize that they’ve been humbled. Bluster and bravado are useless in this fight. The coronavirus doesn’t respect them, or respond to them, or even recognize them. It doesn’t sneer at them, but it makes you pay for them every time.

It just does its work, silently, following its DNA, while some humans offer false facts, empty promises, unfounded optimism, pointed fingers and rage.

There’s too much we don’t know, too much that is baffling, too much we’re still learning about this disease not to be humbled by it. Ignorance is supposed to be humbling, not emboldening. Our doctors, nurses and scientists get that. They know what they’re up against. Our leaders need to get it. So do we.

A note to our community:

As a public service, this article is available for all. Newsday readers support our strong local journalism by subscribing.  Please show you value this important work by becoming a subscriber now.

SUBSCRIBE

Cancel anytime

Health