ALBANY, NY— With a bombshell report released by LoHud this week showing that more than 35,000 nursing home complaints flooded New York State during the pandemic and that 96% of those claims were deemed unsubstantiated or unresolved, Senator Sue Serino today is urging state legislative leaders to immediately conduct an oversight hearing into the issue.
“New Yorkers—especially the impacted families—are owed an explanation,” said Senator Serino. “For New York State to have allowed thousands of calls for help to remain unresolved during a public health crisis is truly despicable. These residents were among the most vulnerable when it cames to the COVID-19 pandemic, and their health and safety should have been a top priority, but time and again, the state treated them as an afterthought. The Legislature must immediately exercise its oversight authority to conduct a hearing on this issue to get to the bottom of how these calls were handled and how so many could have slipped through the cracks at such a critical time. Families deserve answers, accountability, and most importantly, the assurance that this type of inaction will never be repeated.”
With Long-Term Care Ombudsmen, family and visitors shut out of nursing homes in the early days of the pandemic, Senator Serino introduced legislation to ensure that such complaints were received, reviewed and acted upon immediately, however the state took no action to advance the idea.
Senator Serino is the Ranking Member of the State Senate Committee on Aging.
A copy of the letter can be viewed by clicking here. In addition to the Senate’s Majority Leader, the letter is addressed to Committee Chairs of Aging, Health, and Investigations and Government Operations who all have the ability to issue subpoenas to investigate this critical issue.