New York State Health officials are addressing issues raised concerning cases of the coronavirus and deaths associated with COVID-19 in nursing homes and extended care facilities at the height of the pandemic.

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New York Health Commissioner, Doctor Howard Zucker says hospitals released more than 6,300 recovering coronavirus patients into nursing homes during the height of the pandemic under a controversial, now-scrapped policy. But he argued July 6 that the policy was not to blame for one of the nation's highest nursing home death tolls.

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Zucker, instead, contends the virus’ spread through nursing homes was driven by more than 20,000 infected home staffers, many of whom kept going to work.

Governor Andrew Cuomo reversed the March 25 policy after nearly two months. To date, the state's care homes have reported more than 6,400 coronavirus deaths.