The NY Legislature Isn't Done with Cuomo's Nursing Home Order

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Posted: Jul 08, 2020 10:15 AM
The NY Legislature Isn't Done with Cuomo's Nursing Home Order

Source: AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration may have thought that they put their nursing home controversy behind them after publishing a 33-page report from the New York State Department of Health that appeared to exonerate them. In it, they conclude that Cuomo's nursing home mandate, which forced nursing home facilities to accept COVID-positive patients did not have a significant impact on the state's thousands of nursing home deaths during the coronavirus outbreak. Instead, the report blamed nursing home staff for spreading the disease.

But the New York legislature isn't quite done with the administration yet. Both the New York Assembly and the New York State Senate will be holding hearings on the state's tragic number of nursing home deaths.

“This is almost a dog bites man news story,” Republican Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt told NY1. “The idea that the governor’s health commissioner would come out and say, ‘Good news, the governor’s directive was not to blame for the huge amount of COVID deaths in nursing homes,’ should come as no surprise, but is greatly disappointing.”

Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried, a Democrat, said that although the Department of Health study did a "good job in justifying the March 25 order," it does not address a host of long-standing problems at the nursing homes.

“Legislative hearings can be helpful,” Gottfried argued. “They can help bring out some issues and give advocates and others an opportunity to make their points.”

Fox News meteorologist Janice Dean, who blames Gov. Cuomo for her in-laws' deaths, welcomes the hearings. She is among several notable figures who insist that we need an independent investigation, because the state health department's investigation was a "joke."