Governor Andrew Cuomo, lauded by the left for his Covid-19 response and given an Emmy Award for his televised briefings, may now have to add an additional chapter to his self-congratulatory best-selling book. Today from the AP:
Attorney General Letitia James has, for months, been examining discrepancies between the number of deaths being reported by the state’s Department of Health, and the number of deaths reported by the homes themselves.
Her investigators looked at a sample of 62 of the state’s roughly 600 nursing homes. They reported 1,914 deaths of residents from COVID-19, while the state Department of Health logged only 1,229 deaths at those same facilities.
If that same pattern exists statewide, James’ report said, it would mean the state is underreporting deaths by nearly 56%.
Part of the gap is explained by a decision by New York’s health agency to exclude from its count the number of nursing home patients who die after being transferred to hospitals. Hospital and nursing home officials say the state has ready access to that figure.
Health Commissioner Howard Zucker has said at times that the state is working on compiling that data. His department has not responded to repeated requests by The Associated Press for that figure in recent weeks.
According to a separate AP analysis, the state could have undercounted nursing home deaths by as much as 65%.
Maybe Cuomo isn’t as much of a hero as either the left or he himself thinks he is.