ALBANY, NY – Governor Cuomo is responding to criticism over how the state has handled nursing homes during the pandemic.
NewsChannel 34’s Corina Cappabianca has more on what he had to say about calls for a federal probe.
Much of the controversy is over a state order that allowed patients that tested positive for the coronavirus back in nursing homes. It’s since been modified.
But, the Governor maintained that the state was following CDC guidelines at the time.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) The state followed President Trump’s CDC’s guidance. Ok that’s that answer.
That was the Governor’s response when asked why he issued a state directive in March allowing patients with COVID back into nursing homes.
The Governor says that CDC guidance said nursing homes should not be allowed to discriminate against a patient with the coronavirus.
He said a big issue in march was hospital capacity.
And, he says nursing homes shouldn’t accept patients they’re not qualified to handle.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) For a COVID patient, a nursing home must say I can quarantine, I can isolate, I have the right staff, I have the right PPE or else that nursing home should not take that patient.
Earlier this month the state changed its policy saying that now hospitals can’t release a patient back to a nursing home unless that person tests negative for COVID.
Nursing home deaths have accounted for roughly a quarter of COVID deaths in the state.
Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and other upstate representatives called for a federal probe into the issue during last night’s congressional town hall.
((Rep Elise Stefanik, (R) 21st Congressional District)) I do think it’s important to have an independent investigation to provide answers to those families who have lost loved ones and are truly heartbroken.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) If the federal government wants to start a probe then they can start a probe.
Currently visitors are still barred from coming into nursing homes except for end of life visits.