Albany, NY — Empire Center Senior Fellow for Health Policy Bill Hammond will testify before the Congressional Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, sharing his expertise on nursing home mortality rates during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hammond’s testimony will focus on the March 25, 2020 New York state Health Department directive, which compelled nursing homes to accept COVID-infected patients being discharged from hospitals.

An Empire Center analysis in February 2021 found a statistically significant correlation between the number of patients transferred and higher mortality rates in the nursing homes that accepted them. The analysis indicated the policy was associated with several hundred and possibly more than 1,000 additional resident deaths.

“The sad fact of the matter is, New York – like other states and the federal government – had not adequately prepared for a pandemic they knew would be coming eventually,” said Bill Hammond as part of his written testimony. “This episode and others like it should be closely investigated – not to shame past officials for misjudgments in the heat of a crisis, but to make sure that future officials will have better options.”

The hearing will take place on May 17 at 10 am in 2247 Rayburn House Office Building, and can be livestreamed here. Others expected to testify include Fox News Senior Meteorologist Janice Dean, Voice for Seniors Co-Founder Vivian Zayas, and Harvard Medical School Professor of Health Care Policy Dr. David Grabowski.

The full testimony can be read here.

The Empire Center, based in Albany, is an independent, not-for-profit, non-partisan think tank dedicated to promoting policies that can make New York a better place to live, work and raise a family.

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