Watch CBS News

With Nursing Home Scandal Hanging Over His Administration, Gov. Cuomo Hits Road To Raise Awareness Of New Vaccine Sites

PORT CHESTER, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo toured a new Brooklyn mega site Monday in a push for members of the minority community to get the COVID-19 vaccine, but the nursing home scandal continues to dog him.

Call it, escape from Albany.

Cuomo brought members of the faith community and lawmakers to eyeball preparations for a new site at Medgar Evers College that can administer up to 3,000 shots a day to people living in underserved communities, CBS2's Marcia Kramer reported.


"Blacks died at twice the rate of whites. Hispanics died at one and a half times the rate of whites. How shameful," Cuomo said. "We have to be equitable in the administration of the vaccine. We have to correct the injustice we just saw perpetrated by COVID."

The Medgar Evers site is one of two federal vaccine sites opening Wednesday in minority communities. The other one is at York College in Queens. The need to reach people in these communities so important that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is providing special bus service. And people are being told that if they can't reach the site to register by phone they should just stop in and make an appointment.

"So far, 6.1% vaccine rate. So I speak directly to my congregation and to all congregations when I say trust this vaccine," said the Rev. Dr. Adolphus Lacey of Bethany Baptist Church.

But while you can take the governor out of Albany, you can't stop lawmakers from tying him to the nursing home scandal, a scandal that has engulfed his administration.


The state Senate on Monday was passing a suite of bills to reform the nursing home industry. One bill mandates that the state report long-term care residents who die in hospitals as nursing home deaths. Another requires nursing home facilities to spend 70% of revenue on care.

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris told Kramer the 10 bills are intended to improve accountability as the federal government investigates the Cuomo administration's handling of COVID-19 in nursing homes.

"The most important thing to keep in mind is that we're trying to give the public confidence in the nursing homes that they trust their love ones with," Gianaris said.

The governor also announced that people can start visiting loved ones in nursing homes this Friday.

And there is also good news for movie lovers. Theaters in New York City can reopen March 5 at 25% of capacity, and no more than 50 people in each theatre. Masks remain a requirement.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.