Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg will lead a massive effort to recruit and train a medical “tracing army” to find people infected with coronavirus and isolate them to slow the spread of the disease, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Wednesday.
Bloomberg will contribute $10 million to the effort, which will be run through the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University. It will design the curriculum and training programming for the 35,000 medical students expected to work as tracers. The state Department of Health will work with the State University of New York and City University to identify and recruit students.
Officials say wide-scale testing, tracing and isolation are considered crucial to taming the coronavirus outbreak in the downstate region -— and one of the keys to lifting stay-at-home orders.
The tracing program is one of three major testing-related initiatives underway in New York, where the pandemic has claimed at least 15,000 lives.