Cuomo Plans To Send National Guard To Seize Critical Medical Supplies From Upstate NY

Written by Wes Walker on April 4, 2020

Hard times call for hard choices — so, is Cuomo making the right one?

He’s planning to scoop up the ‘extra’ supplies (as defined by Cuomo and company, not by the local health professionals) and ‘redeploy’ them in more worthy New York locations.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that he would use the National Guard to take ventilators and protective equipment from hospitals and other health care facilities in upstate New York where they’re not in use to deploy the lifesaving equipment in the New York City area.

“I’m not going to be in a position where people are dying and we have several hundred ventilators in our own state, somewhere else,” Cuomo said on Friday during his daily briefing. “I apologize for the hardship to those institutions — ultimately there is no hardship, if you don’t get the ventilator back, I give you my personal word I will pay you for the ventilator — but I’m not going to let people die because we didn’t redeploy these ventilators.”

He plans to sign an executive order to give the state the power to take equipment from private hospitals, nursing homes, and other facilities. Cuomo objected to a reporter’s question saying the state would “seize” ventilators, instead describing it as “sharing” of resources.

…On Thursday, Cuomo said the state would be surveying hospitals on a daily basis to ask them what personal protective equipment — masks, gowns, gloves — they had on hand and ask them to voluntarily contribute to a state stockpile that could then be distributed as needed. The executive order will give him the power to make that mandatory.

“Hospitals who are not dealing with Covid are seeing very low activity and it’s not that we’re going to leave any health care facility without adequate equipment, but they don’t need excess equipment,” the governor said. — Politico

How could depleting emergency stores at vulnerable places that haven’t *yet* been hit hard possibly go wrong?

Hypothetically, what happens if someone who COULD have been helped is denied proper treatment in one of these places where he’s planning to take these medical supplies from because the ‘extra’ supplies they had the good sense to supply were taken from them?

Didn’t de Blasio have a chance to make sure NYC was well-supplied? And what did he prioritize?

He prioritized solar cells. The mayor didn’t even start to order emergency PPE until MARCH… LONG after the rest of the world was snapping up supply.

Cuomo’s record was no better.

Cuomo could have purchased the additional 16,000 needed ventilators for $36,000 apiece or a total of $576 million in 2015. It’s a lot of money but less than the $750 million he threw away on a boondoggle “Buffalo Billion” solar panel factory. When it comes to state budget priorities, spending half a percent of the budget on ventilators is a no brainer.

Now the pandemic is actually here. Cuomo’s grim reaper rules will be applied. New York City’s deputy commissioner for disease control Demetre Daskalakis is anticipating “some very serious difficult decisions.” So far, in New York City, 1 out of every 4 people with a confirmed case has been hospitalized, and 44% of them have needed a ventilator. — GP

And now, the Leadership Failures of these two men have become a life-endangering emergency for ordinary New Yorkers.

Is Cuomo justified in taking this action?