ALBANY, N.Y. (WROC) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced new rules for nursing homes across New York State at his daily briefing on Thursday.
Nursing homes across the state must:
- Provide Personal Protection Equipment and temperature checks for staff
- Isolate COVID-19 residents in quarantine
- Separate staff, transfer COVID residents within a facility, to another long-term care facility or to another non-certified location
- Notify all residents and family members within 24 hours if any resident tests positive for coronavirus or dies due to the virus
- Readmit COVID positive residents only if they have the ability to provide adequate level of care under the DOH and CDC guidance
“We’re going to undertake an investigation of nursing homes now to make sure they are following the rules,” the governor said. “They get paid to take care of residents and they have to do it in accordance with state rules and if they don’t we will be taking action.”
“Mother nature brought a virus and the virus attacks old people. Nothing went wrong, nobody is to blame for creation of the situation, but they have to deal with the situation.”
On Thursday, the governor announced that an addition 438 New Yorkers lost their lives due to COVID-19.
Cuomo also released data on the infection rate of the virus. 3,000 residents were survey across New York State from 19 different localities and 40 different localities.
Research shows that 13.9% of those surveyed tested positive for having the antibodies. “If the infection rate is 13.9%, then it changes the theory of the death rate. If you look at what we have now as a death total which is 15,500 that would be about .5% death rate.”
The governor warned that the data is preliminary and the death rate will be altered once data is collected that includes the at-home deaths due to COVID-19. The current number only reflects deaths in hospitals and nursing homes.
Cuomo commented again on reopening the state on a regional basis. On Tuesday, Cuomo appointed Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce CEO Bob Duffy to serve as a special coordinator regarding public health and the reopening of the Finger Lakes region.
During Tuesday’s briefing, the governor spoke about how different regions have different curves, and that upstate communities may be reaching a plateau, or still rising, whereas downstate areas are beginning to descend as far as the virus’ spread goes.
However on Thursday, he encouraged New Yorkers to remember that with some things opening at different rates, it will bring residents from different areas looking for something to do.
“Understand that in that regional analysis you still exist in a tristate area with millions of people who are looking for something to do and get the kids out of the house and go. So that has to be factored in.”
A Johns Hopkins University professor and her graduate student have created an interactive map to capture all confirmed COVID-19 cases, fatalities and recoveries.