Speaking to reporters Wednesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced preliminary results of Wuhan coronavirus antibody tests given to members of the New York City Police and Fire Departments. They show 10.5 percent of police officers and 17.1 percent of firefighters have already been exposed to Wuhan coronavirus.
"What we've found so far - fire department, which also has the EMTs, tested 17 percent positive. NYPD 10 percent positive, number much higher in the FDNY EMTs. We believe that's because the EMT number is driving it up but we have to do more numbers and more research to determine that," Cuomo said during his daily news briefing, adding the government will be testing transit workers soon. "Remember the EMTs are the frontline, they're the ones who are there assisting the person in the closest contact in many ways. FDNY also but we want to find out exactly what's going on. They compare to a downstate average of the general population of about 18 percent."
"Testing began Monday on a sample a portion of both New York’s Fire Department and Police Department to determine what percentage first responders have been exposed to and or already contracted the deadly virus. The pilot program was announced last weekend by Cuomo after months of firefighters urging city and state officials to provide testing for personnel. Over 2,000 FDNY Firefighters have been diagnosed with the virus," the FDNY Firefighters Association announced in response to the results.
Last week Cuomo revealed the infection rate among the general population, based on anti-body tests, is nearly 14 percent. This number brings the fatality rate of the disease down significantly.
"If the infection rate is 13.9 percent then it changes the theories of what the death rate is if you get infected. Thirteen percent of the population is about 2.7 million people who have been infected. If you look at what we now have as a death total which is 15,500 that would be about .5 percent death rate," Cuomo said.
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