Concord, N.H. -- WMUR’s Adam Sexton obtained a damning report from the VA that lays bare Governor Chris Sununu’s failure to prevent and mitigate the COVID outbreak at the New Hampshire Veterans Home and proves that his so-called “review” is actually a sham. In a self-aggrandizing press conference just a few weeks ago, Sununu touted a sham report that does not even attempt to assess what contributed to the COVID outbreak at the Veterans Home, or what could have prevented or mitigated it. Sununu's sham report barely mentions the COVID outbreak at the Veterans Home, but it does mention that the Veterans' Home received an assessment from the VA on December 3, 2020 -- in the middle of the outbreak. The report, which uses a CDC template, left a box asking what recommendations were adopted based on that 12/3 consultation completely blank -- which Sununu repeatedly failed to provide an explanation for at a press conference last week. WMUR obtained a VA assessment from the same time period -- which contradicts Sununu’s claim that there was “nothing glaringly negative” in the sham report -- and outlines alarming revelations including:
"Weekly surveillance testing of all veterans is taking several days to result, making it an unreliable tool for decisions about isolating veterans or quarantining employees.”
Issues with proper use of N95 masks, with the facility "struggling to complete fit-testing on all employees.”
A “large gap with employee adherence to infection control recommendations” which could have contributed “to continued transmission and increasing cases” in the Veterans Home.
WMUR compared the assessment to Sununu’s sham report and found that “months after the VA visit, the Veterans Home has still not completed N95 fit testing for all employees,” and noted that “it's not clear if that recommendation was followed, as the information was not included in the state report.” WMUR also found that the Veterans’ Home has still not fit-tested all employees for N95 masks. “Governor Sununu owes our veterans and nursing facility staff an apology after he shamefully used this sham report as a way to cover up his failure to prevent or mitigate the COVID outbreak at the New Hampshire veterans home,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley. “Governor Sununu should stop playing political games at press conferences, and instead should prioritize the health and safety of our veterans and nursing home staff by implementing the recommendations from the December assessment as soon as possible.”