Four of New York City’s deadliest nursing homes during the pandemic landed on Newsweek magazine’s list of “best” facilities.
Manhattan’s Isabella Geriatric Center, where by its own admission 98 patients died of the virus as of April 29, received the top rating as did the Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation in Queens, where the state lists 83 deaths at the home and another 32 in the hospital.
Also deemed “best” was the Menorah Home in Brooklyn, which is run by the same entity as Isabella and where the state tallied 100 deaths including 30 in the hospital.
The state Department of Health just updated nursing home fatality data to include hospital deaths
“Extensive measures were taken during the creation of this ranking to address the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on nursing homes in the US. The objective is to only award nursing homes which have the best possible response and protocols given the current circumstances,” Newsweek said in explaining its methodology.
Haydee Pabey, whose 72-year-old mom died of COVID-19 at Isabella in April and who is suing the facility, said she was sickened to see it get the Newsweek accolade.
“My mother died there because of their negligence and I felt hurt and betrayed all over again,” Pabey said.
She appealed to Newsweek — which had reported in May on Isabella’s shockingly high death toll — to remove the home from its list. She sent the magazine a state Department of Health inspection report that found during a May visit not all staff were wearing masks as required, and another from August that said an aide was rough with a patient and “forcefully turned the resident onto the side causing the ventilator tube to come out.”
Newsweek agreed to remove Isabella and Parker Jewish along with 17 other nursing homes, including the Sapphire Center in Queens with 55 deaths, from its online issue released in the fall. Outside the city, the Long Island State Veterans Home, with 120 deaths, was also expunged.
But Isabella was still prominently displaying Newsweek’s 2021 “Best Nursing Home” logo as of Saturday, despite the magazine assuring Pabey it had notified Isabella in November that it had to stop using the logo. Homes pay Newsweek a licensing fee in order to tout their award.
And Parker Jewish was still listed on Newsweek’s site as among the best homes.
A spokesman for Statista Inc., the data firm which worked with Newsweek, said the Parker Jewish issue was fixed after The Post asked about it.
“As with all our rankings, the Best Nursing Homes 2021 list is continually updated based on the information available to us,” said Evan Tobias, head of licensing for Statista.
A spokeswoman for Isabella — which new state tallies show had 102 deaths — said the facility was “in compliance with all state and federal guidelines for infection control.” She did not address why it was still showing the Newsweek citation on its site.