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New York undercounted nursing home coronavirus deaths by thousands

New York undercounted nursing home coronavirus deaths by thousands

February 2, 2021: According to a report by the state attorney general, New York may have undercounted Covid-19 deaths among its nursing home residents by thousands.

If the findings hold, it would mean over 13,000 nursing home deaths, the highest in the US.

A Democrat named Mr. Cuomo has repeatedly defended his nursing home handling and argued that other states were doing worse.

New York is among the few states that count deaths from nursing home alone if they took place on nursing home property, leaving out deaths in hospitals.

A Democrat, Ms. James, found that the deaths in the hospitals due to Covid-19 was after the transfer from the nursing homes, which was not in the health department’s published numbers.

The report consisting of 76 pages builds on nearly 1,000 complaints submitted by nursing home residents and their families from April. The findings are based on 62 nursing homes survey, about 10% of the state’s total facilities.

After the public outcry, Mr. Cuomo canceled this policy after two months but did not accept the blames for the rise in nursing home deaths in the state. He also issued a much-criticized report that sought to defend his action.

According to US media, the state department of the health website later scrubbed the governor’s directive.

 Dr. Howard Zucker, a New York Health Commissioner, issued a 1,700-word statement downplaying the attorney general’s findings.

The New York State Department of Health “does agree that the number of people moved from nursing home to hospital is an important data point, and is auditing this data from nursing homes,” Dr. Zucker said.

Mr. Cuomo’s office has not yet responded to the report, but he has taken a victory lap over his administration’s fight against the virus in recent months

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