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New York banning major gatherings in effort to contain virus

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Holds Media Briefing
Posted at 2:30 PM, Mar 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-12 14:45:47-04

NEW YORK (AP) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the state would ban all gatherings with 500 or more people to battle the coronavirus.

The governor said Thursday the ban would start for most places on 5 p.m. Friday.

Broadway theaters would be affected earlier. Cuomo said venues of under 500 people can only be filled to half their capacity. Some of New York City's most esteemed cultural institutions announced they are shutting down because of the coronavirus, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall.

The virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms such as fever and cough for most people. But for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.