Since the Covid-19 pandemic, it has become clear that many veteran homes and nursing homes throughout the Garden State have serious safety concerns. Numerous individuals lost their lives due to a wide range of negligence at these facilities, and guilty parties are still being held accountable. The New Jersey government has finally agreed to surrender control of its veteran homes as concerned organizations attempt to improve safety for innocent people who have served this country. But will this be enough?
New Jersey Surrenders Control of Veteran Homes
On December 1, it was agreed that the State of New Jersey would no longer be controlling the affairs of veterans’ homes. Governor Murphy ordered the Department of Military and Veteran Affairs to seek an outside vendor instead, explicitly stressing the need for systemic changes and qualified staff members.
While this might seem like a decision based purely on ethical concerns, there is also a financial element. The US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently cut off funding for new admissions at the Veteran’s Memorial Home at Menlo Park after it became clear that the facility was not capable of protecting residents from serious harm. Pandemic infection control became a specific concern during Covid-19. In other words, the New Jersey government has no choice but to seek outside help because it has lost federal funding for some of these veteran homes. There are a total of three veterans’ homes in New Jersey.
Under Governor Murphy’s new plan, each of these homes must have a qualified team of staff, a chief executive officer, and a chief nursing officer. The goal is to create long-lasting reforms that will protect thousands of veterans now and into the future.
Whistleblower Says Problems Have Not Been Fixed
Back on November 17, 2022, the same whistleblower who drew attention to the deficiencies at the state-run veterans’ homes stated that many of the same problems remain unaddressed. The man used the alias “vetkeeper” to release inside information on the staggering number of deaths occurring on a daily basis at these homes, relying on encrypted email service to protect his identity.
This individual has now gone public, stating: “Nothing has happened from the administration [of Gov. Phil Murphy] on this,” Ofshinsky said in a recent interview at his home. “When it was happening, the governor said there was going to be a ‘post-mortem. We’ll get to the bottom of this.’” This statement, along with a “scathing” review of Menlo Park, is probably part of what led to Murphy’s decision to surrender control of the homes.
Where Can I Find an Elder Law Attorney in New Jersey?
If you have been searching the New Jersey area for a qualified, experienced elder law attorney, look no further than Giro, LLP, Attorneys at Law. Over the years, we have assisted numerous elderly individuals with a wide range of legal issues. We can also help concerned family members whose senior loved ones have slipped through the cracks, suffering serious injuries or fatalities due to neglect, abuse, or incompetence. Book your consultation today, and you can get started with an effective action plan to pursue justice and a fair settlement.