New York Governor Andrew Cuomo allegedly cover up thousands of deaths from COVID-19 in the state’s nursing homes. According to the state attorney general, the Democrat governor reportedly underestimated the numbers with an underreporting of up to 50%.
Cuomo, the governor who has confined the population and taken radical measures to supposedly stop the spread of the coronavirus, decided to hide the actual number of elderly deaths in his locality.
According to Letitia James, New York’s attorney general, the state only counted deaths of the elderly in their places of residence, instead of including deaths of older adults that also occurred in hospitals.
The 76-page report, released by the Attorney General, records a study of nursing homes that found consistent discrepancies between deaths reported to the AG’S investigators and those officially released by the state Department of Health (DOH).
The findings could push the Health Department’s current tally of 8,711 deaths to more than 13,000, according to a survey of 62 nursing homes.
In one case, an unidentified facility reported 11 confirmed and suspected deaths to the Health Department as of early August. However, the attorney general’s study of that same facility found 40 deaths, including 27 in the home and 13 in hospitals.
“The preliminary data obtained suggest that many elderly people died from COVID-19 in hospitals after being transferred from their residences, which is not reflected in the total nursing home death data published by DOH.”
The investigation presented by James also found a number of homes that “failed to comply with critical infection control policies,” including not isolating residents who had tested positive for the virus.
Cuomo was criticized for a March 25th Health Department memo that ordered nursing homes to accept patients who had tested positive.
The report noted that at least 4,000 elderly residents died after Cuomo’s memo. James said it “may have put residents at increased risk of harm in some facilities.”
Criticism falls over Cuomo
Cuomo, who sent coronavirus-infected people back to their nursing homes, recently tried to blame those deaths on former President Donald Trump, whom he called “incompetent.”
“An incompetent government kills people. More people died than needed to die from COVID. That’s the truth,” the Democratic governor said.
Vivian Zayas, who founded the advocacy group Voices for Seniors after her mother died in a nursing home, told the New York Post, “our jaws dropped” upon reading James’ report.
“The attorney general’s report shows that Cuomo’s book about his great leadership during the pandemic is a fraud […] It is a fraud and an insult to families.”
Bill Hammond of the Empire Center, a government watchdog group, called James’ report an “independent confirmation of many of the concerns and criticisms that have been raised.”
State Assemblymember Ron Kim (D-Queens), whose uncle, Son Kim, died in a nursing home after suffering “all the symptoms” of COVID-19, noted that the Cuomo administration has refused to disclose the number of nursing home residents who died from the virus in hospitals.
“His constant cover-up is stressful for all of us when we’re just asking for basic facts and he constantly goes on national television to portray himself as the governor of facts and transparency … at this point it’s beyond reprehensible,” Kim said.
According to the independent Johns Hopkins University count, at least 42,887 people have died so far in New York from COVID-19, while state government figures – which only take into account confirmed cases – put the toll at nearly 35,000.