Chinese billionaires and the state of Oregon facilitated ventilator donations to New York to treat patients with Covid-19, as the pandemic accelerates toward a peak.
New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced the states obtained 1,000 ventilators from billionaires Joseph and Clara Tsai and Alibaba founder Jack Ma, while President Trump again promoted an unproven malaria drug as treatment for Covid-19 on Twitter.
“We’re not yet at the apex,” said Cuomo, who described that crescendo of cases as, “the number one point of engagement of the enemy.” In addition to the 1,000 ventilators obtained from China, Cuomo said Oregon loaned New York 140 ventilators.
Current projections put the peak of the pandemic anywhere between four and 14 days away. Officials hope physical distancing imposed across the state will slow the spread of the disease, and forestall the possibility of running out of ventilators and beds, even as Cuomo admitted he hoped to see the apex soon so the experience would end.
The pandemic, “stresses this country, this state, in a way nothing else has frankly in my lifetime,” Cuomo said.
The briefing was another contrast in leadership between Cuomo and Trump. Where Cuomo’s briefings have alarming statistics, his frank descriptions of shortages and personal struggles have been praised across the country.
On Saturday, Cuomo said the state had a signed contract for 17,000 ventilators, which he was later told could not be filled because many had already been purchased by China.