New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has announced that the mandatory quarantine period will be lifted on April 1st for those traveling from other states.
In his announcement, Cuomo lauded the people of New York for the “strength and perseverance” that they have shown during the pandemic. He said this is evident through the number of COVID-19 cases decreasing every day.
Cuomo then said that as they build on their vaccination plan as time passes by, the state is making “significant progress” to win against the pandemic. This, he said, lets them reopen the state’s economy and begin the transition to “the new normal.”
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While the mandatory quarantine will be lifted in New York, people traveling to the state will still be required to fill out a health form.
The state’s Health Department, however, still recommends quarantine as it is good, extra protection.
Starting April 1st, quarantine for domestic travel to New York will no longer be required. Mandatory quarantine will remain for international travelers.@HealthNYGov still recommends quarantine as an added precaution and ALL travelers must complete the Traveler Health Form.
— State of New York 😷 (@NYGov) March 11, 2021
In a statement, Cuomo said that in order to win against the virus, the people need to continue following precautions that we know will limit the virus’s spread, such as wearing masks and social distancing.
NYC Mayor, Health Experts Concerned About the Lifting of Mandatory Quarantine
In connection to the announcement, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio has expressed concern about the decision. He described it as another occasion where Cuomo made a decision without consulting New York City first.
During his Thursday briefing, the mayor said that NYC was “not consulted” regarding the matter, despite making up 43% of New York State’s population.
Some health experts also feel that the quarantine mandate should remain.
According to Dr. Jay Varma, a public health senior advisor, the quarantine guideline needs to remain until more people receive vaccines. He says it’s important for people everywhere to still be as cautious as possible.
Health + Hospitals CEO, Dr. Mitchell Katz, described the decision as a possible premature move. He said that given the new variants, it might be too early to lift the quarantine requirement. He also said it might make more sense to only ease up restrictions to people who already received the vaccine.