Confirming that New York’s coronavirus numbers continue to steadily improve, Governor Cuomo announced that hospitals and group homes can start accepting visitor for the first time since the health crisis began. 

“Obviously, we need to be careful, but we’ll allow visitors in hospitals,” the governor said. “Same thing with group homes. This Friday, the group homes can allow visitors. It is up to the discretion of the group home. They have to tell the state if they're allowing visitors, and again they have to follow state guidelines, masks, et cetera.”

What You Need To Know

  • Cuomo announces US Open can be played in Queens with no fans.

  • Hospitals and group homes can now allow visitors.

  • Nursing homes remain off limits to visitors.

Nursing homes will still not be allowed to accept visitors, since senior citizens s continue to be the most vulnerable population when it comes to COVID-19.

The governor also had some good news for tennis fans: The US Open will be held in Queens, but in a quieter setting.

“We're excited about the US Open … [It] is going to be held in Queens — August 31 to September 13. It will be held without fans, but we can watch it on TV and I'll take that,” Cuomo said. “The tennis authority is going to be taking extraordinary precautions, but that's going to occur in Queens.”

Cuomo also said that new state tests show that 21.6% of city residents have antibodies for coronavirus. That’s up slightly from last month when it was 19.9%, or roughly one fifth of the population.

“We don’t know a lot about this virus and the facts keep changing the more we learn,” Cuomo said. “We were told once you were infested and had the antibodies that was basically it.”

In some nonCOVID-19-related news, State Senate Minority Leader John Flanagan announces that he will be retiring from the New York Senate this month. Flanagan served as Majority Leader until Democrats won back the Senate. 

Cuomo would only say that he wishes Flanagan well, and he worked well with him to draft many state budgets.