NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio holds a press conference on the coronavirus outbreak


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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is holding a press conference Monday to update the public on the coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 138,700 people in New York City, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

On Friday, de Blasio announced the cancellation of all concerts, festivals and other nonessential events in New York City through May and perhaps June as the city seeks to drive down coronavirus infection rates. Such events, he said, go “against everything that we need to do to fight back the coronavirus.” He’s also weighing whether to keep public beaches closed, saying “I can’t see” opening them up yet because the outbreak isn’t contained.

The state is grappling with the worst outbreak in the U.S. with more than 248,417 of the nation’s 759,786 cases. More than 40,683 people have died from Covid-19 in the U.S. with almost half of those fatalities concentrated in New York state.

De Blasio has repeatedly criticized the federal government for failing to provide adequate funding to New York in the midst of the outbreak. He has also been critical of the limited Covid-19 testing capacity in the U.S., which still restrains states and cities from testing widely for the virus.

“The absence of testing from day one never allowed us to fight this war the right way,” de Blasio said Monday on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. “If we had had testing in the beginning, we could have done a very intensive containment strategy. We might have been able to beat this disease back here and many other places.”

Read CNBC’s live updates to see the latest news on the COVID-19 outbreak.


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