This is our daily update of breaking COVID-19 news for Tuesday, April 21st, 2020. Previous daily updates can be found here, and up-to-date statistics are here.

Read our guide to understanding New York on PAUSE, NY's stay-at-home order; a look at preparing for the spread of coronavirus is here, and if you have lingering questions about the virus, here is our regularly updated coronavirus FAQ. Here are some local and state hotlines for more information: NYC: 311; NY State Hotline: 888-364-3065; NJ State Hotline: 800-222-1222.

Are you a healthcare worker or another kind of essential worker? Email us what you're seeing at tips@gothamist.com.

Cuomo: Send The USNS Comfort Somewhere That Needs It

5:47 p.m.: New York City doesn’t need the USNS Comfort anymore, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The governor spoke to MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace about his afternoon White House meeting with President Trump. The tête-à-tête went well, Cuomo said, because they had an “open” and “honest” conversation about New York’s needs. The points that Cuomo stressed were the needing to increase testing capacity—he’d like to double New York’s current capacity from 20,000 to 40,000 tests a day—and federal funding for states. (The latest stimulus legislation passed today by Senate and headed for the House later this week is worth $484 billion but does not include aid to states or cities.)

Cuomo emphasized the collaborative nature of his relationship with the president, refusing to bring up other slights. He said Trump was interested in knowing what had worked, what didn’t, and the governor said that it was great the federal government could help create the hospital at the Javits Center and send a Navy hospital ship to New York.

The Comfort was helpful in case New York City hospitals had an overflow of patients, Cuomo explained, but then he added, "We don't really need the Comfort anymore… If they need to deploy that somewhere else, they should take it.”

The Comfort has treated at least 163 patients, including those with COVID-19.

Cuomo also commented on whether those who live in NYC will ever feel comfortable doing the things that were part of their lives before the pandemic—like going out to restaurant, riding the subway. “Whatever we do, whatever government says, I just think people are going to be very wary before they walk into a Broadway theater or they get in a crowded subway car. They’re going to want to know there’s a therapeutic, a vaccine… or some real safety measure before they subject themselves to a situation like that.”

NY Marks Second Straight Day With Under 500 Recorded Deaths

12 p.m. The death toll in New York State dropped below 500 for the second straight day, the latest sign that the state is gradually moving past the peak of the outbreak, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Another 481 state residents were recorded dead from COVID-19 in New York on Monday, up slightly from 478 deaths reported the previous day. Prior to that, the state had consistently reported more than 500 deaths each day since April 2nd.

According to the governor, the total number of coronavirus-linked fatalities across New York is now 14,347. That figure does not account for suspected deaths that occur at home, and is likely a significant undercount.

The net change in hospitalizations and intubations are both down, while total hospitalizations statewide are "basically flat," Cuomo said, adding that "downstate New York is on the descent."

But trends elsewhere in the state are less promising. Speaking from Buffalo, Cuomo noted that cases in Erie County appear to be rising. On Sunday, the Western New York county saw four times as many patients hospitalized for COVID-19 than discharged, according to County Executive Mark Polocarz.

"Whatever Erie County needs, whatever Western New York needs, you have my word the rest of the state will be there," the governor said.

Cuomo also announced on Tuesday that hospitals in areas without a significant risk of a surge can begin performing elective outpatient treatments. The downstate region, along with Erie and Albany counties, will be excluded from the order.

"We’re going to make reopening decisions on a regional basis," the governor said, stressing that such decisions will largely depend on testing capacity.

Later on Tuesday, Cuomo will meet with President Donald Trump in Washington D.C. for a discussion focused on "what does testing mean, how do we do it," the governor said.

“We are doing more faster than anyone else [in New York]," he added. “We have to do better. We have to do more. And that’s what we’re talking about here.”

De Blasio Says NYC Will Hold A Parade For Essential Workers Once Crisis Is Over

10:30 a.m. Looking ahead to the end of the coronavirus crisis, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced plans to hold a parade for essential workers down the Canyon of Heroes, a stretch of Broadway between Battery Park and City Hall.

"We will throw the biggest and best parade to honor these heroes," he said during Tuesday's press briefing.

The parade, he added, "will speak to the rebirth of this city."

But when such a celebration could take place is an open question. On Monday, de Blasio canceled all city-permitted events in June, including the National Puerto Rican Day Parade and the Gay Pride March.

There are now 132,467 known cases of coronavirus in New York City. More than 10,000 people have died from the disease citywide.

While experts have said the reopening of the economy should be prefaced on the ability to do widespread testing, it is not clear whether the state can coordinate such an effort alone. On Tuesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to meet with President Donald Trump to discuss expanding New York's testing capacity, which involves helping national manufacturers procure testing materials from China.

De Blasio recently announced that the city plans to deploy local manufacturers to produce COVID-19 testing kits, with hopes of producing 400,000 tests a month starting in May.

Last Friday, the mayor announced 10 new coronavirus testing sites in mostly minority communities that will eventually perform 7,000 tests a week.

Five walk-in locations are already open: H+H Gotham Health in the Morrisania section of the Bronx, H+H Gotham Health in East New York, Brooklyn and Vanderbilt Health Center in Vanderbilt, Staten Island, Syndeham Family Health Center in Harlem and H+H Queens Hospital in Jamaica.

Those seeking to get tested for coronavirus should call 311 to make an appointment. The city will prioritize those who are 65 and older with preexisting health conditions as local residents.

The other five sites will open next week, de Blasio said. The locations have not yet been announced.

As Trump Announces A Halt To Immigration, Cuomo Heads To Washington

In a stunning late night tweet, President Donald Trump announced that he would be issuing an executive order to stop immigration into the U.S., justifying the measure as part of the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as a need to protect American jobs.

“In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens,” Trump tweeted late Monday night. “I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!”

Such an unprecedented order would have a sweeping impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of visa holders and green card applicants and their families. In the 2019 fiscal year, 462,422 foreigners were granted visas while 577,000 individuals obtained green cards.

Since the coronavirus crisis began, most forms of immigration have largely been suspended. The State Department canceled the most routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments at its offices overseas, and stopping processing for refugee resettlement, according to the Washington Post.

Last month, the Department of Justice closed many of the nation’s immigration courts, including two in New York. The agency that processes green cards and citizenship interviews also said it would shut down through April.

Several elected officials promptly criticized the president's decision.

On Tuesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to meet with Trump at the White House. Trump told reporters about the meeting, set to take place in the Oval Office in the afternoon, during his daily coronavirus press briefing on Monday.

Trump said that the meeting was the governor's idea. "Believe it or not, we get along, OK?" he added.

Cuomo's office later confirmed the meeting, Politico reported.

Cuomo has alternated between diplomacy and harsh criticism with regards to Trump's handling of the crisis. The governor has said that any reopening of the state would hinge on a large expansion of testing. New York has about 300 labs across the state under its authority, but he said rolling out tests in large quantities would still require federal assistance and funding. One of the challenges the state faces, he said, is working with a restricted supply chain.

"We need the volume and the volume depends on national manufacturers," Cuomo said on Monday.