Virus cases in NYC top 1,000 as city prepares for worse

A nurse demonstrates outside the emergency entrance at Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx borough of New York, Saturday, March 28, 2020, demanding more personal protective equipment for medical staff treating coronavirus patients. A member of the New York nursing community died earlier this week while treating coronavirus patients at another New York hospital. The city leads the nation in the number of COVID-19 cases, and the United States currently has the most cases in the world, according to the World Health Organization. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
A nurse demonstrates outside the emergency entrance at Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx borough of New York, Saturday, March 28, 2020, demanding more personal protective equipment for medical staff treating coronavirus patients. A member of the New York nursing community died earlier this week while treating coronavirus patients at another New York hospital. The city leads the nation in the number of COVID-19 cases, and the United States currently has the most cases in the world, according to the World Health Organization. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

NEW YORK – Deaths from the coronavirus topped 1,000 in New York City as officials warned that the worst of the virus' toll is yet to come.

The city's Health Department reported late Tuesday that nearly 1,100 people have died of the virus in the city. More than 1,500 deaths from COVID-19 have been recorded across New York state.

Data released by the city shows that the disease is having a disproportionate effect in certain neighborhoods, mainly in Brooklyn and Queens.

The city’s ambulance system and police department are under increasing stress from the pandemic, with nearly a quarter of the city’s emergency medical service workers out sick, according to the Fire Department. In all, 2,800 members of the Fire Department are sidelined, including about 950 of the city’s 4,300 EMS workers.

Nearly 16 percent of the New York Police Department's uniformed force is now out sick. More than 1,000 officers have tested positive for the virus.

Authorities are racing to build temporary hospitals in locations including Central Park, the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, a cruise ship terminal and a sports complex to handle an expected surge in patients.

The virus, which causes the disease COVID-19, has spread rapidly across the globe. It causes mild symptoms in many of those infected, but it can cause severe symptoms or death for some, including older adults and those with underlying medical conditions such as respiratory ailments.