New York urges medical personnel to join city’s coronavirus fight

New York City is sounding emergency calls for licensed medical personnel to help fight the fast-spreading coronavirus, after recording its most significant hike in deaths on Friday with 305 in a single 24-hour period.

The city sent out a wireless emergency alert urging licensed healthcare workers to volunteer, a call which Mayor Bill de Blasio reiterated Saturday morning.

“Anyone who’s not already in this fight, we need you,” the mayor of 8.6 million residents said in a video posted on Twitter, imploring help from “any health care professional: Doctor, nurse, respiratory therapist, you name it.”

The mayor has estimated the city needs 45,000 more medical personnel to fight the pandemic through April and May.

In New York state, deaths doubled in only three days to 2,935 on Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo told journalists, with 102,863 confirmed cases.

The number of cases just in that state are encroaching on those of entire countries like Italy and Spain, which have suffered the brunt of the pandemic in Europe.

New York City posted 57,159 positive infections alone.

The country’s most populous city has now counted 1,867 deaths resulting from the highly contagious virus, with 305 new deaths in a single day.

In a press conference Friday de Blasio emphasized the “crucial” need for more ventilators, saying the hard-hit city needed a minimum of 2,500 to 3,000 additional machines to get through the next week.

“The ventilators to me are one of the clearest examples of life and death,” the mayor said. “If we’re going to save every single life we can save, we must have the ventilators we need exactly where we need them, when we need them.”

De Blasio called the federal government the “single most important source,” saying that New York City was the “tip of the spear” that needed the most help.

Saturday morning the mayor emphasized New Yorkers were in it for the long haul, dispelling hopes the city, which is sheltering in place, would reopen before April 30.

“We think we’re going to see a tough April and it’s going to extend into May,” the mayor said.