It’s hard to believe a state could have mishandled COVID patients worse than New York, which sent recovering COVID patients to recuperate in nursing homes, allowing them to spread the sickness to other residents, and then fudged the numbers showing how many people died.
Well, New Jersey may yet top that appalling record. Not only did Governor Phil Murphy’s health director also send highly infectious patients into nursing homes despite clear warnings, but the state will now have to shell out $53 million – $445,000 per family to the families whose loved ones died in two state-run veterans homes in 2020.
A federal civil rights investigation found that staff at the two homes resisted wearing face masks in the early stages of COVID. The homes had previously been accused of failing to implement infection prevention measures.
To make matters worse, the Wall Street Journal has reported that eight of the nine senior managers at New Jersey’s veterans homes who were ineligible for COVID hazard pay received it anyway.
Governor Murphy’s appalling record on COVID deaths was a key reason he won only 51 percent in his re-election bid last month. It’s a shame that the full story of the negligence of his administration wasn’t made public before voters went to the polls.