New York reveals 12,000 unreported COVID deaths

New York has revealed 12,000 more COVID-19 deaths that went unreported under disgraced former governor Andrew Cuomo.

Cuomo's successor Kathy Hochul told NPR Wednesday the new numbers reflect official U.S. CDC data, bringing the state's total number of COVID-19 deaths to 55,400.

The previous number reported by Cuomo was incomplete, focusing only on confirmed COVID-19 deaths, and excluding those who died at their own homes and other places.

Hochul said the revised count is based on death certificate data submitted to the CDC, which includes any confirmed or suspected COVID-19 deaths in any location in New York.

Hochul's announcement comes on her second day in office, and appears to make good on her promise of greater transparency.

Cuomo, who resigned amid a sexual harassment scandal earlier this month, has also faced criticism for underreporting data during the pandemic to improve his own image.

According to a New York attorney general's report released in January, Cuomo was criticized for undercounting coronavirus deaths in nursing homes by as much as 50%.

Cuomo later acknowledged that his office should not have withheld that data, but fell short of apologizing.

Even with the additional numbers, New York still has the third highest total number of COVID deaths in the country, behind California and Texas.

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