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AG’s office says Cuomo, NYS hasn’t violated law by blocking nursing home data release

While reporters around the state have been pushing for the release of nursing home death toll data connected to the COVID-19 pandemic – the state’s Attorney General claimed that Governor Cuomo isn’t violating any law by delaying the release of it.

The New York Post first reported this update, following up with Attorney General Letitia James. Governor Cuomo has been accused of stonewalling the release of information about the total number of nursing home residents who died from the Novel Coronavirus.

The Empire Center earlier brought a lawsuit over the matter, alleging that the state’s Health Department is illegally sitting on data connected to nursing home deaths amid the pandemic.

Specifically, the incomplete data connected to those who were at nursing homes, but then were transported to hospitals across New York in the early days of the pandemic.

Democrats and Republicans have joined the chorus of opposition to the non-release of that data. Cuomo and health officials have blamed employees of nursing homes for creating spread inside those facilities, but a criticized March 25 Health Department directive required nursing homes to admit coronavirus patients who were ‘medically stable’.

Critics say it was this, and not employees or visitors who ultimately brought the virus into these facilities.

The Empire Center says the data should be readily available. However, the state argues otherwise, and has extended the window on the original FOIL request filed over the summer.

The Attorney General’s office released a six page response to the claims on Monday, blasting and denying all of the allegations in the legal petition.

Check out the Empire Center’s update from September below:

The Health Department Stalls a FOIL Request for the Full COVID Death Toll in Nursing Homes