Gov. Whitmer Must Answer for Controversial Nursing Home Orders

March 8 2021

Gov. Whitmer Must Answer for Controversial Nursing Home Orders

Whitmer enjoys a professional relationship with Cuomo, who is being scrutinized for COVID orders that may have led to spikes in nursing home deaths

LANSING, MICH—New York Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo, under fire for disastrous nursing home COVID orders that may have resulted in a spike in deaths at nursing homes, isn’t the only high-profile governor to institute such measures.

Cuomo’s March 25, 2020 advisory stating, “no resident shall be denied re-admission or admission to the NH solely based on a confirmed or suspected diagnosis of COVID-19,” is coming under intense scrutiny following revelations that the Cuomo Administration covered up nursing homes deaths throughout 2020.

A similar situation may be playing out in Michigan where Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is under fire for a lack of transparency with regard to COVID policies in nursing homes and how COVID deaths are being recorded.

Gov. Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-50 (Enhanced protections for residents and staff of long-term care facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic) on April 15, 2020. The order read, in part, that, long-term care facility must not prohibit admission or readmission of a resident based on COVID-19 testing requirements or results in a manner that is inconsistent with relevant guidance issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (“DHHS”).

Republicans are now asking for a federal investigation into Whitmer’s COVID-19 nursing home policies, pointing to Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-50. “What you saw in New York—where Gov. Cuomo was hiding the death numbers—we’ve asked those questions here,” State Rep. Steve Johnson (R-Wayland) said last week.

How much did Whitmer work with Cuomo on her response here in Michigan? Gov. Cuomo is chair of the National Governors Association, which puts him in a prominent position to speak with other governors including Whitmer. The two had a close working relationship, and even released a joint statement in September.

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