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NEW YORK, NY – According to Fox News, an independent watchdog report says that the nursing home policies put into place by the administration of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic most likely caused as many as 1,000 additional deaths. The Albany-based nonprofit Empire Center for Public Policy released its report – which was based on information provided to them by the New York State Department of Health (DOH) – on Thursday, and focused on the period of time between March 25 and May 10, 2020.
During that period, the report says, Cuomo – in an effort to reduce overcrowding in hospitals – directed nursing homes to accept patients who had tested positive for COVID-19. The Governor’s mandate, the reports says, is “associated with” at least one out of every six of the 5,780 nursing deaths recorded in New York State during that time period.
“Statewide, the findings imply that COVID-positive new admissions between late March and early May, which numbered 6,327, were associated with several hundred and possibly more than 1,000 additional resident deaths,” the report said.
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Cuomo has been experiencing intense backlash and scrutiny after it was revealed that his secretary, Melissa DeRosa, had admitted in a phone call that state officials had withheld from federal authorities the full nursing home death toll – allegedly cutting the number of deaths in half – out of fear that the data could “be used against us” by the U.S. Department of Justice. The revelation spiked bipartisan calls for a probe into his administration’s handling of the pandemic, as well as calls for Cuomo to resign.
Governor Cuomo has not yet responded to the findings of the Empire Center for Public Policy’s report.