Missouri Veterans Commission News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 02, 2020
JEFFERSON CITY – As a result of reports of active COVID-19 cases in Missouri’s Veterans Homes, Governor Mike Parson instructed Missouri Veterans Commission (MVC) Chairman Timothy Noonan to conduct a rapid, independent, external review of all seven Missouri Veterans Homes which has resulted in a report available for public review.
After a competitive bid process, Armstrong Teasdale, a national law firm headquartered in St. Louis, Mo., was retained by the Missouri Office of Administration to conduct an external review. To ensure the review appropriately considered all relevant information, Armstrong Teasdale attorneys interviewed 174 people in less than 35 days, implemented a hotline for veterans’ families to voice concerns, analyzed more than 900 documents, and directed Pathway Health to conduct on-site audit of all seven long-term care facilities, following all necessary safety protocols. Their review is now complete, and a report, which includes an in-depth analysis regarding the root cause of the outbreak and recommended corrective actions, was presented to the Chairman of the Missouri Veterans Commission on Nov. 16, 2020.
“We are dedicated to serving our veterans, especially during these difficult times,” said Noonan. “As part of the review process, the MVC received early recommendations that enabled immediate action to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The additional information learned from the investigation was insightful and will drive the reforms to be implemented by the MVC. The dedication of the Armstrong Teasdale team, which included veterans, former medical and clinical professionals and prosecutors, was unmatched. Their recommendations provide us a roadmap that will challenge the MVC and other stakeholders to address the current pandemic and implement necessary reforms.”
As demonstrated in the report, (found on the MVC website at: https://mvc.dps.mo.gov ), the following are some of the corrective actions:
Expand use of data analytics
Examine structure of MVC
Implement outbreak plan
Implement COVID-19 reset
Implement Essential Caregiver plan
Implement inside visit plan
Improve communication with families
“The MVC will conduct the after action report, as recommended by Armstrong Teasdale, and analyze, prioritize, and drive appropriate actions to improve the MVC to make Missouri the best state in the nation for veterans,” said Noonan.
The Missouri Veterans Commission, a division of the Department of Public Safety, operates seven State Veterans Homes, five State Veterans Cemeteries, and the Veterans Services Program. The Commission is committed to honoring and serving Missouri’s Veterans whose dedication and sacrifices have preserved our nation and its freedoms. For more information about the Missouri Veterans Commission programs, call (573) 751-3779, online at http://www.mvc.dps.mo.gov, or facebook.com/MissouriVeteransCommission.