New York mayor Bill de Blasio warns half of all New Yorkers will get coronavirus

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Over 4 million New Yorkers — or 50 percent of the city’s population — will get the coronavirus, Mayor de Blasio warned Wednesday.

“It’s a fair bet to say that half of all New Yorkers and maybe more than half will end up contracting this disease,” de Blasio said at a City Hall press briefing about the outbreak as the Big Apple’s positive cases approached 18,000 with nearly 200 deaths.

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“That’s worrisome, very deeply worrisome,” he added.

His health commissioner, Dr. Oxiris Barbot, said the percentage could be even worse by the fall.

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Yellow cabs line an empty 42nd St. waiting for fares outside Grand Central Terminal, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in New York. Hospitalizations from COVID-19 were rising faster than expected in New York as residents and leaders prepared for a peak in cases that is expected to still be weeks away. Temporary hospitals, and even a morgue in Manhattan, are being setup. 

Yellow cabs line an empty 42nd St. waiting for fares outside Grand Central Terminal, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in New York. Hospitalizations from COVID-19 were rising faster than expected in New York as residents and leaders prepared for a peak in cases that is expected to still be weeks away. Temporary hospitals, and even a morgue in Manhattan, are being setup.  (AP)

“We think 50 percent by the end of this epidemic, this pandemic, so by the time September rolls around likely 50 percent, but it could also be much higher,” Dr. Barbot said at the briefing.

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De Blasio added that there’s no certain patient zero for the metropolis, even though officials had previously identified a Manhattan health care worker who’d returned from Iran as the first case in early March.

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“We don’t even know truly when it first asserted here in the city,” de Blasio admitted.

This story originally appeared in the New York Post. For more from the Post, click here.