Cuomo to contract private labs to increase coronavirus testing

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo is pictured alongside a graphic depicting coronavirus.

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ALBANY, N.Y. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the state will begin contracting private laboratories to conduct testing for the novel coronavirus.

“When you look at the experience in China, the experience in South Korea, what changed the trajectory of the incline of the number of cases? It was a tremendous amount of testing,” Cuomo said. He cited figures that China had been able to test 200,000 people a day for the virus, South Korea 15,000 a day, while the United States had only done 5,000 total.

“They were so aggressive on testing that they actually identified people who tested positive, isolated them and then ran down the track of whom those people may have contacted.”

The governor said he spoke with 28 private labs in the state to help provide additional testing.

“We have great labs in this state,” he said, adding that the federal government and CDC’s response to the crisis had been insufficient.

There have been 212 positive tests for coronavirus in New York state so far, including 121 in Westchester County.

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