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NYC to run out of ventilators in days: mayor

AFP  |  New York 

New York is days away from running out of essential equipment needed to keep hospitals running because of the coronavirus pandemic, its mayor warned Sunday.

The Big Apple has the highest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States and Bill de Blasio said they city's hospitals were at breaking point.

"Bluntly, we're about ten days away now from seeing widespread shortages of ventilators, surgical masks, the things necessary to keep a hospital system running," de Blasio told CNN.

He pleaded with President Donald Trump to mobilize the military to help spur production and distribution of urgently needed medical supplies.

"If we don't get more ventilators in the next ten days, people will die who don't have to die. It's as simple as that," said de Blasio.

He warned that "the worst is yet to come" and called the fast-spreading outbreak "the greatest crisis domestically since the Great Depression" of the 1930s.

"That's why we need a full-scale mobilization of the military and we need the Congress to act like we're on the way to the next great depression," de Blasio said.

"Forget bailing out the airlines right now. Bail out the people. Bail out the hospitals. Bail out the cities and states and counties," he added.

Almost 27,000 people have been infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus in the United States, according to a running tally by Johns Hopkins University.

More than 8,000 of those live in New York City, where 60 people have died, de Blasio said.

A total of 76 people have died in New York state so far.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, March 22 2020. 21:32 IST