New York’s tally of coronavirus cases rose to 11 on Wednesday, as officials revealed that nine people linked to an infected Westchester attorney tested positive...
New York’s tally of coronavirus cases rose to 11 on Wednesday, as officials revealed that nine people linked to an infected Westchester attorney tested positive — and some 1,000 people were asked to self-isolate.
“This is the most complex case we’ve had in terms of the number of interactions,” Gov.
Cuomo said at an afternoon press briefing in Albany announcing the most recent batch of confirmed cases.
Since the lawyer — identified by sources as Lawrence Garbuz, 50, of New Rochelle — on Tuesday became the second Empire State resident to test positive for the contagion, those around him have fallen like dominoes.
Tests on Garbuz’s son — a 20-year-old undergrad at Yeshiva University’s Washington Heights campus — his 14-year-old daughter and his wife, Adina, all came back positive, Cuomo revealed Wednesday.
Also infected was a neighbor who drove Garbuz to a doctor’s office when he first feared he might be have the disease, Cuomo said.
In another event held hours later, Cuomo confirmed the infection of an additional five people connected to Garbuz: a friend, as well as that man’s wife, two sons and daughter.
In addition to Garbuz and the nine people tied to him, a 39-year-old Manhattan health-care worker who’d recently traveled to hard-hit Iran became the state’s first confirmed case when she tested positive on Sunday.
Garbuz, who has an underlying respiratory infection, is hospitalized at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia Medical Center in stable condition, while the others are well enough to stay home, albeit under quarantine, Cuomo said.
The city and state have separate laws governing the quarantining of people with contagious diseases and the isolation of those who have been exposed, according to an official Public Health Legal Manual published in 2011.
There are no rules governing voluntary compliance, which the manual calls the “preferred method” of keeping people from infecting others.
But if people refuse to follow directions, the city health commissioner has the authority to order them confined for up to five days — “with no restriction on where” and without a court order, the manual says.
Outside the city, that decision falls to local boards of health.
Breaking involuntary confinement can result in fines of between $200 and $2,000 per day in the city and up to $2,000 per incident elsewhere.
Violations that pose an immediate danger to the public can also result in arrest and prosecution on a misdemeanor charge.