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Cuomo: Upstate, including WNY in line to experience 'rolling apex' of Covid-19

Brace yourself, Western New York.

A "rolling apex" will see infections peak around the state, with upstate and by implication Western New York likely to follow downstate areas, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday.

The governor also said a less intrusive form of Covid-19 test that limits health care workers' exposure is expected to be ready next week.

In Washington, President Trump backed off from his earlier hope that the country would be back to work by Easter, saying the federal government’s guidelines for social distancing would last until April 30.

A prominent local official joined the growing list of Western New Yorkers who have contracted the disease. Common Council President Darius Pridgen used social media to share his experience and to warn others who may not be adhering to the guidelines to protect themselves against Covid-19.

The total number of New York residents testing positive for Covid-19 reached nearly 60,000 Sunday, with the death total rising over 1,000, one-quarter of them residents in nursing homes. There have been 8,503 hospitalizations, with more than 1,700 in intensive care and 3,572 people released, 846 on Saturday alone.

Erie County counted 34 more confirmed Covid-19 cases, raising the number to 414, with one death bringing the total to seven.

Niagara County reported 10 new positive tests Sunday, nearly quadrupling its total to 38.

Erie County remains handcuffed in its efforts to process more coronavirus tests in the county by a shortage of nasal swabs, transport tubes and reagents – substances used in chemical testing.

To get more pharmacists and nurses on the front lines, D'Youville College is speeding up graduation for eligible students and expects to confer diplomas as early as Friday.

In a sign of the times, airline travel is all but at a standstill at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, where the 7,500 daily passengers on average has been reduced to a trickle. Only about 500 of the 7,000 parking spaces at the airport are used, some by construction workers for the airport's $80 million expansion project.

Meanwhile, schools are keeping a watchful eye on high school seniors on track to graduate,  realizing the extended school closure could make it difficult for some to meet graduation requirements. Districts expect to know more once there's a better idea of when and if schools reopen this school year.

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