Cuomo Order “Petrified” Nursing Home Administrators

"Gov. Cuomo & Chairman Prendergast Ride E Train" (CC BY 2.0) by Metropolitan Transportation Authority of the State of New York

Cuomo Order To Take in COVID-Positive Residents “Petrified” New York Nursing Home AdminstratorA New York nursing home administration provided a statement in an exclusive interview that he and other executives at nursing home facilities were “petrified” by the infamous order by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last March 2020.

According to an account of a nursing home administration, Michael Karus, him, and other nursing home facilities executives were petrified when Cuomo provided an order last March 2020 to have COVID-19 positive patients be placed in long-term care facilities rather than in hospitals. 

However, according to Kraus, his concerns were immediately shot down by state officials. 

Kraus said, “Many facilities vocalized it. He added, “They were petrified, but they were more petrified of the Department of Health … once it [my concern] was shot down, I never spoke [about it] again.”

There were over 15,000 nursing home and long-term care patients who were confirmed to have died in the state of New York. However, in January 2021, the state only reported a fraction of that number. A few months later, a top aide of the New York governor provided an account that they deliberately hid the real number of COVID deaths in nursing homes, as they were scared of the consequence that the Trump administration will impose upon them at that time.

Meanwhile, critics blame Cuomo’s order for this massive number of deaths. 

Said issue made national headlines as Cuomo adviser Melissa DeRosa revealed the real story to Democratic state lawmakers. 

DeRosa stated that Cuomo’s administration withheld the information about the real number of death. She stated that “we froze” in the face of a potential federal investigation. 

Cuomo himself subsequently acknowledged that both state lawmakers and the Department of Justice had requested August 2020 for a full accounting of nursing home deaths.

Earlier this month, there were also reports from The New York Times and Wall Street Journal that top aides of Cuomo pressured health officials over the summer to remove data from a report that shows the number of Coronavirus deaths in nursing homes that were higher than publicly acknowledged at the time. 

Said issue is reportedly placed under investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office and the FBI.

Meanwhile, Cuomo has admitted that things “should have been done differently.” However, he stopped short of issuing an apology for what happened. 

According to reports, Democratic New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s administration allegedly warned Cuomo that ordering nursing homes to readmit residents recovering from Coronavirus would lead to unnecessary deaths. However, Murphy went ahead with implementing the order anyway. 

In March 2020, New Jersey Health Commissioners also informed hundreds of long-term care providers in a conference call that they would soon be expected to readmit COVID-positive patients to nursing home residents. 

According to the New Jersey Advance Media report, Persichilli told the staff that the returning patients would need to be separated into a separate wing and be assisted by separate staff that was not allowed to mingle and instructed facilities unable to do that to contact the state for assistance.

However, after the announcement by Perichilli, a warning was given by an unnamed administrator that people would “die” should an infected resident be readmitted. 

“Patients will die,” the administrator said. “You understand that by asking us to take COVID patients, by demanding we take COVID patients, that patients will die in nursing homes that wouldn’t have otherwise died had we screened them out.”

Perichilli went on to discuss with the administrators the guidelines for separating returning residents and their caretakers, but the group of officials took issue with the commissioner.

“You have asked us to separate safely and create our own wing and take in COVID-19′s from the hospital,” said one of the administrators.

“The problem, of course, is there is no separating safely,” they continued. “It’s almost certain that even though you have staff only on that unit, something will migrate.”