AP count: Over 4,300 virus patients sent to NY nursing homes

Nursing home by Picture Alliance via Getty Images.jpg
13 March 2020, North Rhine-Westphalia, Heinsberg: A disinfectant dispenser hangs in the Johannes-Sondermann-Haus of the AWO Altenzentrum while senior citizens play in the background. Due to the spread of the coronavirus, a nationwide ban on visiting old people's homes and nursing homes is currently being discussed. Photo: Jonas Güttler/dpa (Photo by Jonas Güttler/picture alliance via Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) — More than 4,300 recovering coronavirus patients were sent to New York's already vulnerable nursing homes under a controversial state directive that was ultimately scrapped amid criticisms it was possibly accelerating the outbreaks.

That's according to an Associated Press tally conducted after the state declined to release its own survey.

Whatever the full number, the March 25 order requiring nursing homes to take recovering COVID-19 patients from hospitals has become a thorny political issue for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who abruptly reversed the policy May 10.

New York leads the nation in nursing home deaths with about 5,700.