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Coronavirus: N.Y. sees signs of hope after worst week of COVID-19 deaths

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New York is wrapping up its worst week in deaths so far of the coronavirus outbreak, but there were a few signs of hope.

At the end of the day Friday, there were 18,654 people hospitalized with the virus in the state. That was up only 85 since the previous day.

The bad news has been that large numbers of people are still dying every day. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday that 783 people died Friday, the fifth day in a row that the toll topped 700. The figures raised the number of coronavirus-related deaths in the state to 8,627.

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The governor and mayor could face more questions over whether school buildings in the nation’s largest district would close for the rest of the year, with classes continuing online.

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio said the public school sites in the city’s 1.1 million-student school district would close for the rest of the academic year to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Gov. Andrew Cuomo countered that the decision was his to make.

De Blasio said his goal to reopen school sites by September, adding that high school graduates may have to go without a commencement ceremony. But Cuomo said school closings would have to be co-ordinated with districts surrounding the city.

The coronavirus pandemic means that this Easter Sunday, there will be no congregants in the pews at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan will lead a televised Mass in a broadcast expected to draw a large audience.

The Archdiocese of New York says fewer than 600 people would tune in to watch the cathedral’s Sunday Mass live streams before the pandemic. That number was up to more than 100,000 on Palm Sunday.

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