‘Outraged’ Governor sending Attorney General to investigate macabre scene in Andover.
A refrigerated truck is now on site.
A nightmare has descended upon the residents in the Andover Subacute and Rehabilitation Center during the pandemic. The result, according to police, is the discovery of 17 bodies that were stored in a makeshift morgue.
"I am outraged that the bodies of the dead were allowed to pile up in a makeshift morgue at the facility." said Governor Murphy, "New Jerseyans living in long term care facilities deserve to be cared for with respect, compassion and dignity."
"We can and must do better.”
According to police, New Jersey Representative Josh Gottheimer received a request from the nursing home for 25 body bags. The police visit resulted from the high number of deaths that were apparently not being reported.
Police arrived on the scene and found the center holding 17 bodies where it only had the capacity for four.
According to reporting in the New York Times, the 17 deaths were among the 68 recent deaths linked to the facility. 26 of the dead were positive for COVID-19.
According to reporting in the Wall Street Journal, more than a dozen of the deceased residents were being kept in a small holding room in the facility before they were removed with the assistance of law-enforcement officials Monday, said Chaim Scheinbaum, CEO, at Alliance Healthcare, which owns the facility.
"We know that this is an issue that is not unique to New Jersey" said Murphy, "it is national in scope." For the families involved, it is very local, not national. Their nightmare continues at the Andover Subacute and Rehabilitation Center.
Attorney General Grewal will investigate "all long term care facilities who have experienced a disproportional number of deaths." said Murphy.
“Like the governor and so many other New Jerseyans, I am deeply troubled by the high number of deaths at certain nursing homes and other long-term care facilities in the state, especially those with below-average track records for health inspections, staffing, and quality of care,” Grewal said in a statement.
“I can confirm that the Attorney General’s Office is now investigating the matter, and we will follow the facts wherever they go,” he said. “As is our standard practice, we will not be providing further updates on the investigation unless and until we bring an enforcement action or close the case.”