ALBANY, NY – A Gothamist article today explores the challenges facing any attempt by the governor’s office to provide necessary oversight in the state’s assisted living facilities during the coronavirus pandemic.
Nursing homes across the state continue to be a hotspot for both coronavirus spread and mortalities related to it. So far, more than 5,000 New Yorkers have died from COVID-19 complications in these facilites, accounting for roughly a quarter of the state’s fatalities during the pandemic. But while the governor’s office has pledged action and oversight, critics worry that it may present what a conflict of interests.
“We’re going to undertake an investigation of nursing homes now to make sure they’re following the rules,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a joint press conference with Attorney General Letitia James on April 23rd. “Nursing homes—they are our top priority, they have been from day one.”
But nursing home advocates wonder how an investigation handled by the governor’s office could possibly offer an objective verdict about actions taken by the administration, such as Gov. Cuomo’s order forcing facilities to accept residents who tested positive for the coronavirus, or the holdup of crucial protective gear. And because oversight of the state’s 613 nursing homes is already the purview of the executive branch, they worry that the investigation will in effect be a closed loop.
The entire article is worth reading for anyone concerned about the state’s handling of the coronavirus response, particularly where it touches on nursing facilities.
DISCLAIMER: Finz & Finz, P.C., presents this article as part of the firm’s ongoing series covering the coronavirus pandemic. We scan the latest information on the crisis from some of the nation’s top news services and encourage our readers to follow the provided links for additional context and details. If you or someone you love has been impacted by the coronavirus, contact us today to speak to one of our New York COVID attorneys.