Coronavirus

No shot: Pfizer nixes New York’s direct appeal

By GREGORY ZELLER // It appears Albany’s questionable attempt to cut out the middleman in its immunization efforts is a nonstarter. Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday sent a letter to Pfizer Chairman and CEO Albert Bourla requesting the ability to purchase COVID-19 vaccines directly from the New York City-based global pharma manufacturer. Whether this was an honest effort to speed vaccinations to New Yorkers or a political stunt, the effort was doomed from the start…

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Let’s get physical: Regs tight, gyms set to reopen

By GREGORY ZELLER // Your gym is reopening. Governor Andrew Cuomo unveiled the good news Monday, announcing a multifaceted plan that sees statewide gyms and fitness centers gearing back up Aug. 24 – with several caveats, first and foremost the ability of local health departments to delay reopenings at their discretion. Only facilities meeting “rigorous health and safety standards” can reopen, according to the governor’s office, and “local elected officials may choose to delay the…


Citing scofflaws, state resets restaurant restrictions

By GREGORY ZELLER // You want fries with that? You better, if you plan to order a beer. A menu of new pandemic-flavored rules handed down from Albany on Thursday sucks some of the flavor from New York’s celebrated pandemic recovery, with all statewide bars and restaurants – including those enjoying Phase Four privileges, such as eateries on Long Island – now limited to serving alcohol only to patrons who order food and dine on…


Phase Four arrives on LI, with bombs bursting in air

By GREGORY ZELLER // Strap yourselves in, Long Island, but keep strapping on those facemasks. And batten the hatches for some political fallout, too – Phase Four has arrived, with fireworks. Governor Andrew Cuomo, one of President Donald Trump’s more vocal critics, pulled no punches in Monday’s daily briefing, in which the governor announced strong COVID-19 numbers across the state, confirmed that indoor dining in New York City is on hold indefinitely and essentially accused…


A summer sans internships? No way, schools say

By GREGORY ZELLER // With canceled internships and rescinded job offers adding insult to injury for shortchanged U.S. college students, Long Island universities are working hard to keep their flocks working this summer. Longstanding career- and business-development programs at Adelphi University and Hofstra University have refocused their efforts through a pandemic-friendly lens, with a growing number of virtual internships and other remote-working (and remote-learning) opportunities now in play. The need for a Summer 2020 internship…


Busy Cuomo reverses one mistake, warns of another

By GREGORY ZELLER // It was a busy Mother’s Day for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who on Sunday reversed a key (some say costly) pandemic position, issued a dire warning about children’s health and lambasted federal recovery policies. The governor also made a bold proposal to Washington regulators poised to issue new recovery legislation this week: the “Americans First Law,” which prevents companies that don’t return to pre-pandemic employment levels from receiving post-pandemic stimulus packages. The…


Study: Healthcare pros less infected than general pop

By GREGORY ZELLER // Here’s a bright note for National Nurses Week, or any week that places dedicated healthcare providers in the crosshairs of a deadly global pandemic: The personal protective equipment is working. Measures taken to safeguard frontline healthcare workers – including mass production and the energetic, often grassroots distribution of protective masks, face-shields, gowns and gloves – are having a measurable effect, according to statistics released Thursday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office. In…