Jensen: New York Is Failing Our Healthcare Heroes

A Statement from Assemblyman Josh Jensen (R,C,I-Greece)

“Across our state, hospitals, nursing homes and healthcare systems are grappling with a crisis that was entirely out of their control. Gov. Kathy Hochul’s failure to compromise on her unilateral vaccine mandate is causing tremendous uncertainty when it comes to critical staffing levels. Additionally, as a court-ordered mandate allowing for religious exemptions gets closer to its expiration, we are at a potential precipice of even more healthcare workers losing their jobs, jeopardizing the care and safety of 20 million New Yorkers.

“Even while some hospitals have extremely high numbers of vaccinated employees, they are now operating on extremely thin margins and the loss of staff has substantially strained care providers and a workforce that have been working overtime for over 20 months. The governor’s unwillingness to compromise on her mandate has caused the cancelation of vital services and care, an increase in wait time, and due to a lack of staff in New York’s nursing homes, a lack of options to discharge medically-fragile senior citizens.

“It is imperative that Gov. Hochul and New York allow for religious exemptions and work with our healthcare systems to keep patients and employees safe through additional measures such as increased testing. To make matters worse, Albany leaders’ so-called ‘solution’ to a potential staffing crisis by using student nurses, nurses whose licenses have lapsed, out-of-state nurses and the National Guard will not fill the gap caused by potentially even more mass firings across the state.”