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New York’s daily Covid-19 deaths fall below 100 for first time since March

New York’s daily coronavirus death toll fell below 100 for the first time in almost two months in an encouraging sign the pandemic continues to ease in the US’s hardest-hit state. It comes on the day the global new cases level topped 100,000 for the second day running.

A further 84 people died in New York over the past 24 hours, governor Andrew Cuomo said on Saturday at his daily press briefing, from 109 a day earlier.

“It’s a sign we’re making real progress and I feel good about that,” Mr Cuomo said, adding that earlier in the crisis a doctor had told him “if you can get under 100, I think you can breathe a sigh of relief.”

The death rate was most recently below 100 on March 25, according to data compiled by the Covid Tracking Project.

The state’s record daily increase was 951 on May 7, but this number was boosted by a one-time reclassification of previous fatalities by the Covid Tracking Project.

At its worst, the daily rate was in the range of 700 to 800 in the lead-up to Easter. On Friday, the overall death toll in the state was 23,195, as per Covid Tracking Project data, or just over one-quarter of total deaths in the US since the pandemic began.

In a sign of continued progress around the state, Mr Cuomo said the mid-Hudson region of New York was set to reopen on Tuesday, while Long Island could “possibly” open by Wednesday.

As a growing number of US states have taken steps in recent weeks to being reopening their economies after lockdowns, concerns about the possibility of a second wave of infections have increased.

Asked if New York would consider quarantining against people from other states in case they transported the virus, Mr Cuomo said he did not think states or even the federal government could legally bar out-of-state visitors from entering.

“Even if we do get infected by someone, the real question is how do we control that?,” Mr Cuomo said, underscoring the importance of testing and tracing systems being in place.

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