36 veterans at the LaSalle Veterans home died in 2020 during a COVID-19 outbreak. Now a state report has shed light on the deadly outcome. Details of the report include a scathing take on leadership at the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs – saying mismanagement created an “inefficient, reactive and chaotic” response to the virus.
Months after the outbreak the Director of the IDVA Linda Chapa LaVia was fired by the Pritzker Administration. But the report says Chapa LaVia abdicated her responsibilities in dealing with situation early on. Governor JB Pritzker says looking back on it, he shouldn’t have put her in charge of the IDVA.
The report includes details of residents who tested positive for COVID being placed in rooms with those who tested negative, lack of employee training to deal with stopping the spread of the virus and failing to ask for outside help once the scope of the outbreak was known. The new Director of the IDVA Terry Prince comes to Illinois after running Ohio’s Veterans homes and is a 31 year Navy Veteran.