NY Governor Andrew Cuomo Expanding COVID-19 Testing to all Essential and Front Line Workers & Issuing Executive Order to Allow Pharmacies to Conduct Diagnostic Testing.

“Bellevue, Montefiore, SUNY Downstate, is now running a COVID-only hospital, so everybody in that hospital is a COVID patient, and you want to talk about God’s work, that’s where it’s happening.”

Related video from the Governor’s Press Conference can be found near the bottom of this page.

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced today the expansion of COVID-19 testing. Going forward all Frontline, Healthcare and Essential workers would be allowed to be tested. He also declared the issuance of an Executive Order allowing pharmacists to conduct diagnostic testing. All in the midst of a massive move to increase the number of tests being done in the state.

This expands upon the previous criteria which required that a person be symptomatic. Asymptomatic individuals (without symptoms) were previously asked to self-quarantine. Now, the conditions for testing are to include those individuals as listed above and detailed farther down on this page.

What we’ve learned from Mr. Cuomo today is that New York State is “doing more tests per capita than any country around the world, let alone any state in the US”. As the labs continue to increase in their capacity with equipment and supplies, more collection mechanisms are needed. That is, places to carry out such tests. Thus, the allowing of pharmacies helps to solve this problem.

As far as expanding upon testing to include others in New York he would state the following:

“As we continue to develop our testing capacity and the labs are coming up to scale, the collection sites are opening, the more testing we have, the more we will open eligibility. Hopefully one day we get to the point where anybody who wants a test can walk in and get a test, right? That was the dream, but we found out quickly that we couldn’t do that. You have 19 million people in the state. So, we had to prioritize, we still are prioritizing, but we’re opening that prioritization. The more capacity, the more tests, the more we’ll open the eligibility criteria.”

More specifically, those allowed to be tested without symptoms are in the following lists.

First Responders:

  • Firefighters
  • Paramedic / Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs)
  • Police Officers
  • Correction / Parole / Probation Officers

Frontline Healthcare Workers:

  • Direct Care Providers
  • Health Care Practictioners, Professionals, Aides and support staff (e.g. Physicians, Nurses, Public Health Personnel)
  • Medical Specialists
  • Nutritionists and Dietitians
  • Occupational/Physical/Recreational/Speech Therapists
  • Psychologists/Psychiatrists
  • Residential Care Program Managers

Essential Workers:

  • Animal Care Workers (e.g Veterinarians)
  • Automotive Service and Repair Workers
  • Bank Tellers and Workers
  • Building Code Enforcement Officers
  • Child Care Workers
  • Client-Facing Case Managers and Coordinators
  • Counselors (e.g. Mental Health, Addition, Youth, Vocational, Crisis, etc.)
  • Delivery Workers
  • Dentists and Dental Hygienists
  • Essential Construction Workers at Occupied Residences or Buildings
  • Faith-Based Leaders (e.g. Chaplains, Clergy Members)
  • Field Investigators/Regulators for Health and Safety
  • Food Service Workers
  • Funeral Home Workers
  • Hotel/Motel Workers
  • Human Services Providers
  • Laundry and Dry Cleaning Workers
  • Mail and Shipping Workers
  • Maintenance and Janitorial/Cleaning Workers
  • Optometrists, Opticians, and Supporting Staff
  • Retail Workers at Essential Businesses (e.g. Grocery Stores, Pharmacies, Convenience Stores, Gast Stations, Hardware Stores)
  • Security Guards and Personnel
  • Shelter Workers and Homelessness Support Staff
  • Social Workers
  • Teachers/Professors/Educators
  • Transit Workers (e.g. Airports, Railways, Buses, and For-Hire Vehicles)
  • Trash and Recycling Workers
  • Utility Workers

Governor Cuomo would also state how antibody testing would be done for frontline healthcare workers since they’ve seen the very worst of the Coronavirus Crisis.

Video from today’s COVID-19 Press Conference edited to include only those portions covering Governor Cuomo’s talk of Testing.