Coronavirus News: New York City stresses plea for medical supplies, personnel as city reaches apex

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- As the number of cases increases in New York City, there's a desperate urge for more medical supplies.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said city hospitals have enough ventilators for the moment, which is good news because they thought they might run out on Sunday.

"We have bought a few more days," the mayor said adding the city can get to Tuesday or Wednesday with the current ventilator supply.

The city has distributed 2,865 ventilators. There are only 135 ventilators left in the city's stockpile.

De Blasio says the number of intubated COVID-19 patients is approaching 4,000 in city and could hit 5,000 by mid-week.

One thousand ventilators have arrived from China and more are on the way from Oregon, but the mayor says more will be needed to meet demand.

Officials are also hurrying to open up more beds for patients like the temporary hospital at the Javits Center in Manhattan, which will begin accepting patients with the virus this week.

As of Saturday afternoon, 30 New York City hospitals were at or near ICU bed capacity. Seven of them were at or near total capacity. All New York City hospitals are expected to be at or near total capacity during the coming week. This information was included in a FEMA report reviewed by ABC News. The temporary hospitals at Javits and USNS Comfort still have substantial beds available.

Javits becoming available will add 2,500 beds for people who test positive with the COVID-19 virus.

"The federal government is also deploying approximately 1,000 personnel to New York - that's doctors, that's nurses, that's respiratory technicians," Cuomo said on Sunday. "The immediate priority is to deploy those people to help the New York City public hospitals.'

325 of those federal personnel were expected to arrive on Sunday.

While Governor Cuomo says two-thirds of the people hospitalized have since been discharged, he says the number of intubations continues to rise.

Sen. Charles Schumer continued his call for the White House to put a military leader in charge of pandemic supplies, even though the president slammed the senator for his proposal last week.

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Sen. Charles Schumer is continuing his call for the White House to put a military leader in charge of pandemic supplies.


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