Governor Andrew Cuomo has visited coronavirus testing labs ahead of large scale anti-body testing beginning this week. 

Cuomo toured the Northwell Health Core Lab in New Hyde Park before delivering his daily COVID-19 briefing.

The US state of New York will begin large-scale antibody testing this week as an initial step to decide when and how the state could reopen its economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Cuomo said on Sunday. 

Yesterday he announced that New York appears to have passed its peak in coronavirus fatalities as the death toll across the state dropped for a second consecutive day.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo toured the Northwell Health Core Lab in New Hyde Park yesterday before delivering his daily COVID-19 briefing

Cuomo on Sunday announced that 507 people died from COVID-19 on Saturday, down 43 from the day before. 

It comes after Donald Trump yesterday defended his coronavirus response by showing clips of Cuomo praising him.  

Cuomo, who has consistently locked heads with the president in recent weeks, unloaded on Trump on live television Friday, mocking his demand for gratitude for federal help and saying: ‘Thank you for doing your job’.

Cuomo followed this up with another swipe in his Saturday briefing where he recited Lincoln’s famous quote – ‘a house divided itself cannot stand’ – and said there is ‘no time for politics’. 

The United States coronavirus death toll climbed by 1,629 in 24 hours to reach 41,186 on Sunday evening, latest statistics show.

Confirmed cases of the highly infectious illness also soared to a total of 771,980, an increase of 25,596 from the day before.

The US state of New York will begin large-scale antibody testing this week. Cuomo is seen at the lab wearing a face mask

The ominous milestone came as Harvard researchers warned that if the country hopes to permanently open back up any time soon, then coronavirus testing efforts must increased nationwide by at least 500,000 people per day.

Currently the nation is testing at a far less efficient rate of only 150,000 people per day. Only 3,865,864 Americans have been tested in total, little over one percent of the US total population.

‘If we can’t be doing at least 500,000 tests a day by May 1, it is hard to see any way we can remain open,’ experts from the Harvard Global Health Institute warned.  

Contrary to the warnings, several states are looking to lift lockdown orders and return to normalcy as soon as possible.

Cuomo walks around the lab with members of staff. New York has been the epicentre of the US coronavirus crisis

But for some, action is not being taken quickly enough. Hundreds-strong crowds gathered in Colorado, Tennessee, Oregon, Illinois, California, Montana and Washington State on Sunday to protest state lockdown measures, as a fervent disdain for the restrictions that have shut down much of the country’s economy continues to slowly spread across the US.

Conducted by Dr. Ashish Jha, faculty director of the Harvard Global Health Institute, Dr. Thomas Tsai, and Benjamin Jacobson, the research on the testing shortfall also warned the number of positive tests must significantly decrease before lockdowns can be lifted.

Currently in the US, 20 percent of those who are tested for coronavirus test positive. The World Health Organization has said that to reopen, that number should be between 3 percent to 12 percent.

During yesterday’s marathon press conference Trump played clips of Cuomo twice, complaining that in the first clip ‘they left out the good part’.

The video segments were from a press conference the New York governor held Sunday morning.

‘The federal government stepped up and was a great partner,’ Cuomo said in the first clip shown at the White House. ‘I’m the first one to say it. We needed help, and they were there.’

The United States has by far the world’s largest number of confirmed coronavirus cases, with more than 750,000 infections and over 40,000 deaths. 

‘The president doesn’t want to help on testing. I said 11 times, I said the one issue we need help with is testing. He said 11 times: ‘I don’t want to get involved in testing, it’s too complicated, it’s too hard’. I know it’s too complicated and too hard. That’s why we need help. I can’t do an international supply chain.’

Walter Shaub, former director of the Office of Government Ethics, tweeted: ‘Beyond being another taxpayer-funded campaign ad, this video clip also makes Trump look exceedingly weak. The video casts Cuomo as Trump’s boss giving him a performance appraisal. (If only!).’ 

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