The Hebrew Home in Riverdale, which recorded the deaths of 86 residents from the Corona, and the New Jewish Home in Manhattan, with 76 Corona-related deaths, are among six nursing facilities in NY City that were designated “COVID only” facilities.
Last Wednesday, New York Health Commissioner Howard Zucker sent a letter to state lawmakers disclosing that NYS had quietly established 19 nursing homes as “COVID-only,” where seniors recovering from the virus would be cared for. Zucker revealed the state had set up the facilities in November “to allow the transfer of medically stable, but persistently positive COVID-19 nursing home eligible patients” after they had left the hospital.
Zucker reported to the lawmakers that the selected sites contain 1,941 beds “to meet the needs of this special population.” He did not specify at the time where the facilities are located.
But on Saturday, the NY Post revealed that the list of 19 Corona-specialized nursing homes included six facilities in New York City (Six NYC nursing homes become ‘COVID only’ facilities). In addition to the two Jewish facilities, the list includes Plaza Rehab and Nursing Center in the Bronx, where 91 residents have died of COVID-19, the Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center in Manhattan (56 deaths); the Sea Crest Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Brooklyn (58); and the Beach Garden Rehab and Nursing Center in Queens with 29 deaths.
Last Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo admitted that his lack of transparency in reporting the true magnitude of coronavirus-related deaths in NY State nursing homes was a mistake, but denied the charges of a cover-up, arguing his administration merely delayed the information but did not intend to hide it.
“All the deaths in the nursing homes and in the hospitals were always fully, publicly, and accurately reported,” Cuomo said at a press conference in Albany, explaining: “The numbers were the numbers. Always.”
More than 15,000 nursing home residents in NY State died from the coronavirus, but the state reported only about 8,500 deaths.