NEW YORK (AP/77 WABC) — New York’s coronavirus death toll in nursing homes, already among the highest in the nation, could actually be a significant undercount. Unlike every other state with major outbreaks, New York only counts residents who died on nursing home property and not those who died in hospitals. That statistic could add thousands to the state’s official care home death toll of just over 6,600.
But the administration of Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo has so far refused to divulge the figure, leading to speculation New York is manipulating the figures to make it appear it is doing better than other states.
“While 15 states do not even publicly release any long term care fatality information and in the absence of a consistent federal standard for reporting long term care data, New York was an early leader in providing daily facility-specific information,” a spokesperson for the New York State Department of Health told WABCRadio.com. “New York is only one of nine states that reports both confirmed and presumed in facility deaths and no one has been clearer in personalizing the human cost of the pandemic.”