Walsh Joins Congressman Molinaro, ‘Voices for Seniors’ to Mark Four-Year Anniversary of Covid Nursing Home Order

Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh (R,C-Ballston) attended a press conference today in the New York State Capitol to renew calls for an independent review on the four-year anniversary of the Department of Health’s (DOH) COVID nursing home order that forced nursing homes to accept COVID-positive patients. Despite multiple promises, New York has still not conducted an independent, comprehensive audit to review the state’s COVID response. The press conference was led by Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay (R,C-Pulaski), U.S. Congressman Marc Molinaro, 19th Congressional District, Voices for Seniors Co-Founder Vivian Zayas and Director Tracey Alvino, who highlighted the lack of action from the state’s “Reimagining Long-Term Care Task Force.” The panel was tasked with studying long-term care services in the state but has failed to produce required recommendations to the Legislature.

“We’re 16 months past the inception of the ‘Reimagining Long-Term Care Task Force,’ yet we’re left empty-handed with no accountability and no solutions. This deficiency is glaringly evident considering the task force hasn’t even convened to date. Today, we heard from Voices for Seniors Co-Founder Vivian Zayas and Director Tracey Alvino, who shared stories of their own loss from Gov. Cuomo’s unthinkable order to force COVID-positive patients into nursing homes. Tracey said it best: ‘over 15,000 seniors died by the stroke of Andrew Cuomo’s pen.’ These are real people who we will not let die in vain.”

“New York failed to do a proper emergency assessment after one of the largest public health emergencies we’ve ever known. It’s time for answers, it’s time for transparency, it’s time to show respect to the families who lost loved ones due to the decisions made.”

Editor’s Note: View the March 25, 2020 NYSDOH document on nursing homes here.