After months of deadly outbreaks that gave rise to nearly a third of all coronavirus-related deaths in New York state, Governor Andrew Cuomo finally reversed a state order Saturday, requiring nursing homes and other long-term care facilities to take COVID-19 positive patients.
Last week, state authorities identified an additional, unreported 1,700 coronavirus deaths that took place in the state’s nursing homes but went uncounted in the state’s official death toll for a variety of reasons. The new report, released last Monday, showed that “at least 4,813 residents with confirmed or presumed cases of COVID-19 have died at 351 of New York’s 613 nursing homes since March 1, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration’s new list,” according to Time Magazine.
Those deaths likely stem from a New York regulation requiring nursing homes to accept COVID-positive patients after they’d been released from the hospital or face the wrath of the state. Federal laws require those same patients to be quarantined away from the general population, but many of the facilities that took in those recovering from the coronavirus — many of whom may have still been contagious — did not have the staff or the means to take necessary precautions or the resources to conduct regular testing of both patients and caregivers.
On Sunday, Cuomo reassured New Yorkers that the state would no longer send coronavirus-positive patients to nursing facilities, “revers his March 25 directive forcing nursing homes to readmit residents who were treated at a hospital for COVID19. Those residents can only come back if the test negative for the virus,” according to reporter Zack Fink. – READ MORE
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