Gov. Cuomo unveils plan that targets clusters at 'block-by-block' level

ByEyewitness News via WABC logo
Sunday, October 18, 2020
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Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the state will employ a "micro-cluster" strategy to fight the spread of the coronavirus this fall.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- As the temperatures begin to drop during the fall season, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said New York should expect to see a rise in cases due to more people being indoors.

That is why the state is employing a "micro-cluster" strategy to target the spread as opposed to its statewide or regional approach.

"So rather than looking at it on a state level, or regional level, or even a county level, or even neighborhood level, we are now going to analyze it on the block-by-block," Cuomo said. "But we actually have data that is so specific that we can't show it, because it would violate privacy conditions. But we know exactly where the cases are coming from."

This means more targeted testing and mitigation measures that reflect why the virus is spreading in those specific areas, with increased enforcement as well.

"It requires more testing, more targeted testing, and then you have to be responsive to the situations in that specific locality with mitigation measures for that specific locality," Cuomo said." But it has the advantage of causing less disruption."

Cuomo said if there's a problem in Kew Gardens, Queens, then that's their issue.

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"Why affect activity in the rest of points," he said. "Let alone Brooklyn, Bronx, etc., right? So it's much smarter, it's more effective. It's also less disruptive."

Cuomo explained the keys to the strategy include:

- Refined detection

- Specific mitigation

- Enforcement

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"You have to have refined detection, which is more targeted testing," he said. "You have to have mitigation measures for those areas that that reflects why the virus is spreading in those areas. And then you have to do enforcement."

He added the existence of a micro-cluster means a lack of compliance.

The strategy will be essential in hot spots like those in Brooklyn, Queens, Rockland, Orange, Nassau and Broome counties, which are already under restrictions as part of Cuomo's new cluster action initiative.

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