A medical director in a New York nursing home called into Mark Levin's show on March 26th, 2020, the day after the controversial governor’s order to put COVID patients into nursing homes was enacted.
“If this is right, this is exactly the wrong thing that he’s doing,” Levin responded.
On March 25th, 2020 New York Department of Health put out an order saying “no resident shall be denied re-admission or admission to the NH solely based on a confirmed or suspected diagnosis of COVID-19. NHs are prohibited from requiring a hospitalized resident who is deemed medically stable to be tested for COVID-19 prior to admission or readmission.”
In the past several weeks this particular controversy ignited the New York Governor’s office. It started from an admission that Cuomo’s people were covering up the real nursing home death numbers to avoid federal scrutiny, and that evolved into reports of Cuomo threatening politicians like Ron Kim for speaking out about it, and that in itself led to many allegations of sexual harassment from Cuomo’s female aides hitting the public spotlight.
It seems recent to us, but rewind the clock to March 26th 2020. Elaine of Rochelle, New York calls into the Mark Levin show.
She opens up the call by immediately warning viewers that Governor Cuomo had ordered COVID positive patients, while they still might be infectious, must be amongst the “long-term care population.”
Levin is taken aback. “Are you serious?” Mark asks her multiple times. Elaine reiterates in the affirmative. She explains that nursing homes had previously usually accepted patients straight from hospitals, and continued individual care regimens from there.
People at the time still had an overestimated fear as to the severity of the pandemic’s potential. But even on March 26th 2020 it was a well known fact that the elderly were a vulnerable population.
Mark points that out. Elaine responds by referring to the order text directly. “I’m looking at a directive from Andrew Cuomo and Howard Zucker dated March 25th, that is ordering nursing homes… it says nursing homes must comply with the expedited receipt of residents from hospitals. They are deemed appropriate to go into the nursing homes by the hospitals, and we cannot discriminate based on the presence of COVID and that’s it.”
She goes on to explain the lack of coordination there is, from the ground level. All they see is an avalanche of executive orders being pumped out by the Governor. Elaine says hospitals were overwhelmed at the time and eager to discharge patients somewhere else so that they could take in new patients.
Elaine says that the National Association of Nursing Home Medical Directors deemed what Governor Cuomo did with this order was unsafe and dangerous because of the increased likelihood of COVID transmission it’d cause.
Communication of this concern crawled to a standstill back then. It was impossible to get through to anyone. “But you can't get through to anybody down here. Uh, you can't, you can't talk to anybody. We don't have support. There's nobody coordinating the response at this level at it, certainly at the County level.”
She closed by vouching that the nursing home staff were just trying to do their jobs and this was thrusted onto them.
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