Conference Call With County Executive 3/24/2020

So since this Virus problem has become the forefront of our lives, there have been daily news pressers by the President, NY’s Governor and county executives. Today I was in the Suffolk county executive’s conference call to listen to the NEW items and updates. The following numbers were given to the press:

Suffolk County reported the following confirmed cases and deaths due to COVID-19 through 2:30 p.m. on 3/23/2020

  • 1,458 confirmed cases-up 424 from the 1,034 cases reported yesterday.
  • 116 are hospitalized, including 38 in the intensive care unit
  • 13 deaths (up 1 from March 22)


Note: Suffolk County has 2626 beds for a population of 1.5 million, and 87 ICU beds.

So once questions were open I asked the following questions.

1-Forget about this crisis Suffolk has only 2626 beds for 1,500,000 people and 87 ICU beds, why?

Answer: Bellone basically said (and I am paraphrasing), “Yes we do, and I have looked at this before and this is something we need to do better on”.

2- With VP Pence stating today at a town hall meeting at 12:00pm that New York was shipped 2,000 respirators.  I asked County Executive how many of them will Suffolk get?

Answer:  Bellone stated “he did not know and would have to get back to everyone”

3-Elective surgeries have all been cancelled. So I asked what if someone say, has carpal tunnel syndrome, which is elective surgery but the pain level goes from a 5 on a scale of 10, to a 10, does that no longer make that ELECTIVE?

Answer: Bellone stated in his opinion that in that case it would be classified of an emergency surgery and they would be able to have the surgery.

4- With 3433 deaths, 113,690 cases in US and 25,584,595 cases worldwide from the 2009 H1N1 crisis and last year flu’s results of 22,000 deaths, 370,000 hospital cases and 36 million cases in US.  Why are we shutting down businesses, making people stay home, closing non essential things. Is there something that we are not being told?

Answer: It was very fuzzy, and was an all around about words that brought us back to we are doing what the Federal and state governments want us to do? 

So you tell me, was question 4 really answered?  My impression is no.

I have a question for any engineering types: Can CPAC machines be turned into a respirator?

And maybe in conjunction with a machine like “Inogen” which provides oxygen concentrator solutions for both portable and stationary use.

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