Councilman Mark Levine made the grave announcement on Monday
New York City will start temporarily burying coronavirus victims in public parks in trenches dug for 10 caskets if the death roll keeps climbing past a rate hospitals and morgues can keep up with.
The shockingly grim announcement came from Councilman Mark Levine who said it would be done in a ‘dignified’ manner but that it was what was necessary.
He called it ‘temporary interment’.
It was unclear if he meant the bodies would later be exhumed, or if it was a temporary measure the city would be taking until the death rate slowed down, but that the bodies would remain in the parks permanently.
He said the medical examiner is coping with the ‘equivalent of an ongoing 9/11’ and that there were 10 times as many at-home deaths as well as the soaring number of people dying in hospitals.
New York City’s death toll is already at more than 2,000 and a spike in deaths is expected this week, when the apex hits.
There are makeshift morgues all over the city where bodies are being kept in refrigerated trailers outside hospitals because there is nowhere else for them to go.
Levine tweeted: ‘Soon we’ll start “temporary interment”. This likely will be done by using a NYC park for burials (yes you read that right). Trenches will be dug for 10 caskets in a line.
‘It will be done in a dignified, orderly–and temporary–manner. But it will be tough for NYers to take.
A coronavirus victim is taken out of Wyckoff Heights Medical Center in Brooklyn on Monday, April 6, when the death toll in New York City was more than 2,000
A row of makeshift morgues at Bellevue Hospital on April 5. Soon, they too will become overwhelmed with dead bodies
‘The goal is to avoid scenes like those in Italy, where the military was forced to collect bodies from churches and even off the streets. OCME is going to need much more staff to achieve that goal,’ he said.
After the tweet sparked panic, outrage and shock among other users, he clarified that it was a ‘contingency’ and was not yet in motion but that it was something the city was forced to consider.
New York City councilman Mark Levine made the grim announcement
‘As New York City continues to appeal to the nation for help, we need to ask not just for doctors and nurses and respiratory therapists. We also need mortuary affairs staff. This is tough to talk about and maybe tough to ask for. But we have no choice. The stakes are too high.
‘Nothing matters more in this crisis than saving the living. But we need to face the gruesome reality that we need more resources to manage our dead as well.
‘Or the pain of this crisis will be compounded almost beyond comprehension,’ he said.
Levine also said there were a number of at-home deaths leading to the problem.
‘It’s not just deaths in hospitals which are up. On an average day before this crisis there were 20-25 deaths at home in NYC. Now in the midst of this pandemic the number is 200-215. *Every day*,’ he tweeted.
Levine later added in a separate tweet: ‘This tweet has gotten a lot of attention.
‘So I want to clarify: the is a contingency NYC is preparing for BUT if the death rate drops enough it will not be necessary.’
The death rate is still climbing and is expected to for the rest of the week.
Then, the city is expected to start coming down from the peak but social distancing measures will remain in place for at least April and possibly into May.
It also does not take away from the fact the pandemic will peak elsewhere around the country later.
A temporarily hospital has been set up by Samaritans in Central Park. Councilman Levine did not say whether this would be one of the parks where ‘temporary interment’ takes place
Soldiers assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS) monitor COVID-19 patients in the facility’s intensive care unit. There are 2,500 beds in the facility which was constructed by the military in just five days
Admiral Brett Giroir said this week would be the worst week for those three states but ‘that doesn’t mean we’re over it’.
Surgeon General Jerome Adams said this week will be this generation’s ‘9/11 or Pearl Harbor’
‘This week is going to be the peak – peak hospitalizations, peak ICU’s and, unfortunately, peak deaths.
‘That doesn’t mean we’re over it. There are other parts of the country that will peak a a later date; New Orleans, Louisiana etc.
‘Do the social distancing, wear the masks – that’s how we’re going to defeat this virus,’ he said.
He also said he was ‘very optimistic’ about blood tests that are in development that will allow tens of millions of people to be tested to find out if they have had the virus and recovered from it or not.
If the test proves they have recovered from it, it will suggest they are immune and are able to go back to work.
There are two types of that test that are being discussed; both center on antibodies and blood plasma that could then be used to treat those who are sick with the virus and build up their immunity to it.
Coronavirus outbreak in the US is predicted to peak in 10 days with over 3,000 deaths in 24 hours but is expected to be level out by June due to strict social distancing measures, new data shows
The peak of the coronavirus outbreak in the United States could come sooner than first predicted given the lockdown and social distancing measures currently in place across much of the country, new research shows.
Forecasters at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine released updated coronavirus estimates on Sunday that show the pandemic could be over quicker than initially thought and level out as early as June.
The team warns that the protections for each state is assuming that social distancing measures are maintained, such as people staying home and nursing homes barring visitors
The estimated peak day of the US outbreak is expected to occur in 10 days on April 16 with a projected 3,130 deaths that day, the data shows
While the data still shows a predicted 81,000 deaths from COVID-19 over the next four months, the estimate range has lowered. It was initially thought the range could be as high as 162,000 deaths but it is now predicted to be as high as 136,000 fatalities
BILL GATES SAYS PANDEMIC IS ‘NIGHTMARE SCENARIO’ BUT FEWER WILL DIE THAN PREDICTED
Bill Gates has described the pandemic as a ‘nightmare scenario’ but believes the death toll will be lower than the 100,000 predicted by the White House if social distancing is done properly.
Trump said that between 100,000 and 240,000 people would die from the virus by the time it has swept the nation.
‘If we do the social distancing properly, we should be able to get out of this with a death number well short of that,’ Gates said on Sunday during an appearance on Fox.
‘This is a nightmare scenario because human-to-human transmittal respiratory viruses can grow exponentially.
‘And you know, if we had kept on going to work, traveling like we were, you know, that curve would never bend until you had the majority of the people infected and then a massive number seeking hospital care and lots of lots of deaths,’ he said.
He added that life will not ‘go back to truly normal until we have a vaccine that we’ve gotten out to basically the entire world.’
The estimated peak day of the US outbreak is expected to occur in 10 days on April 16 with a projected 3,130 deaths that day, the data shows.
Peak resource use for hospitals is predicted to occur on April 15 – the day before the peak death toll – where an estimated 25,000 ventilators, 140,000 beds and 29,000 ICU beds will be needed.
Data shows there will be a shortage of 36,000 hospital beds and 16,000 ICU beds by that day.
As of Monday, there has been nearly 10,000 deaths in the US and more than 337,000 confirmed cases.
‘If social distancing measures are relaxed or not implemented, the US will see greater death tolls, the death peak will be later, the burden on hospitals will be much greater and the economic costs will continue to grow.’
New data on health service use from multiple states, including New York, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Florida and California, since the pandemic started escalating has also led to decreases in the estimated need to deal with the outbreak.
The need for ICU beds and ventilators are less than previously estimated and will dramatically decrease by June 1, according to the data.
Dr Murray said the data showed the the length of stay for COVID-19 patients in ICU had increased but the length of stay had gone down for patients not requiring intensive care.
The lower numbers of required hospital beds could reflect how moderately ill patients in cities like New York are not being admitted because of the demand on the over-stretched system.