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New York welcomes hospital ship as coronavirus accelerates

New York welcomes hospital ship as coronavirus accelerates

AFP
New York
A HOSPITAL ship arrived in New York on Monday as America’s coronavirus epicentre prepares for the peak of the pandemic, with emergency restrictions extended amid grim warnings about the death toll.
The navy’s USNS Comfort, which has space for 1,000 beds and a dozen operating rooms, docked in a Manhattan pier around 11:00 am (1500 GMT) after departing Virginia on Saturday.
Its arrival came after President Donald Trump abandoned his Easter weekend target for life returning to normal in the United States and extended social distancing guidelines until the end of April.
Trump said on Sunday America’s death rate was likely to increase for two weeks, describing as “horrible” a prediction by senior scientist Anthony Fauci that COVID-19 could claim up to 200,000 lives.
Worst-affected New York is ramping up hospital capacity and taking delivery of desperately needed medical supplies as it races against time to get ready for its peak number of cases.
“This virus has been ahead of us from day one,” Governor Andrew Cuomo told MSNBC Monday, saying projections suggest the pandemic could reach its crest between two and four weeks.