China has donated 1,000 ventilators to New York as the U.S. state battles an extraordinary outbreak of COVID-19, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said—about a quarter of what the federal government has been able to spare. The ventilators were donated by Alibaba founder Jack Ma and the Joseph and Cara Tsai Foundation through the Chinese government, and will arrive at JFK Airport on Saturday. “This is a big deal and it’s going to make a significant difference for us,” Cuomo said. New York estimates it needs 30,000 ventilators but only has enough to last until Tuesday. The state previously ordered 17,000 from overseas but were suddenly told the order couldn’t be fulfilled, presumably because demand was surging worldwide, Cuomo said Saturday. FEMA dispersed around 7,000 ventilators from a federal stockpile last week, with 4,000 going to New York. The state has found another 500 unused ventilators at local hospitals that will be redeployed, and the state of Oregon is also sending 140, Cuomo said Saturday—a move he called “kind, generous and also smart” because it would help to stop the spread of the virus from New York to other states. “We’re all in the same battle here and the battle is stopping the spread of the virus,” he said.
Cuomo reported 113,704 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 3,565 deaths in the state as of Saturday morning, including a staggering 630 deaths in the last 24 hours. But he added that two thirds of people who had been hospitalized have since been discharged, and said discharges were increasing rapidly.