Casey McDermott

State of Democracy/Health Reporter

Credit John W. Hession

Casey McDermott is a reporter covering politics, policy and healthcare.

Prior to joining NHPR, Casey worked at The Concord Monitor and held internships at ProPublica, the Student Press Law Center and the Chronicle of Higher Education. 

She studied journalism and sociology at Penn State but spent most of her days (and nights) in the newsroom of the independent student newspaper, The Daily Collegian. The Collegian was recognized nationally for its work during Casey's time as its managing editor and editor-in-chief.

Garrett Vonk

Three years after the state reached a major legal settlement meant to reform its mental health system, both the outside reviewer hired to monitor the state’s progress and the advocacy organization that sued on patients’ behalf say there’s still significant work to be done.

Amanda Loder, StateImpact New Hampshire

Laurie Laizure of Manchester likes to think she’s the kind of parent who’s engaged in what’s happening at her kids' schools.

Which is why she was so surprised to learn, when scrolling through Facebook last month, about a sexual assault that took place at Manchester West High School. In 2015, a 14-year-old student — a classmate of Laizure's daughter — was raped by an older student in a secluded hallway during school hours.

Eddie Cheuk

The attorney general’s office made waves Thursday night in announcing its plans to launch a criminal investigation into St. Paul’s School over its handling of sexual assaults on school grounds.

While the investigation is still just in its beginning stages, some are already starting to draw parallels to a time when the state took on another powerful institution over its handling of sexual abuse: the Catholic Church.

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

At least 10 people have died from overdoses related to carfentanil in New Hampshire so far this year, according to the latest edition of a semi-monthly report on drug deaths.

NHPR Staff

A legal challenge to the New Hampshire’s plans to share voter data with the Trump administration has been put on hold, pending other legal challenges at the federal level.

Sheryl Rich-Kern for NHPR

Update: The hearing was postponed Tuesday morning at the request of the New Hampshire ACLU, pending further legal action at the federal level.

One of the first legal challenges related to the Trump administration’s request for state voter files will go before a judge in Nashua Tuesday, as part of a lawsuit filed last week by the New Hampshire ACLU and two state lawmakers.

Gov. Chris Sununu says turning over the state’s voter information (or, at least, what’s included in public voter checklists) to a Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity is a step toward restoring confidence in the nation’s elections.

Allegra Boverman, NHPR

Two state lawmakers are joining the New Hampshire chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union to sue Secretary of State Bill Gardner over his plans to comply with the Trump administration’s request for voter information.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

When New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner said he intended to share information from the state’s public voter checklists with a newly launched Trump administration commission, plenty of people were quick to decry the move as an “invasion of privacy.”

Thomas Fearon

In the last month, the governor signed both a sweeping mental health reform bill and a new state budget that included extra money meant to add more services. But it’s still going to take some time before those new treatment services are ready to go.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

This story has been updated.

Secretary of State Bill Gardner says New Hampshire will turn over publicly available voter checklist information to the Trump administration’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, of which he is a member — but the state's still determining how it will share that information, and whether it will ask the commission to pay any money for it.

Dreamstime via Flickr CC

The attorney general’s efforts to investigate the role of drug companies in the state's ongoing opioid crisis took a big leap forward last week, thanks to a favorable ruling from the New Hampshire Supreme Court.

Harris & Ewing Collection (Library of Congress)

You don’t have to look far for examples of deteriorating civility between opposing sides of the political aisle, in New Hampshire and nationally. But one local lawmaker is pitching a new tradition meant to bring Republicans and Democrats together — by pitting them against each other on the softball field.

Courtesy photo

Special elections always present a challenge for campaigns — and even more so in the summer, when vacations and other activities can easily take precedence over politics in the minds of most voters. With this in mind, those involved in the upcoming District 16 State Senate race are pushing absentee voting as a way to remind voters to participate.

elliothospital.org

The last few years have seen a wave of consolidations in New Hampshire healthcare. Now, Southern New Hampshire Health and Elliot Hospital are looking at forming a new “regional healthcare system” — though the details of what, exactly, that partnership might look like are still unclear.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

In their new headquarters inside what used to be Manchester’s police station, the staff at Serenity Place pack three or four workspaces into a single office, with more desks lining some of the hallways. Old police interrogation rooms have been converted to counseling spaces.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

In its 94th year, the Laconia Motorcycle Week prides itself on being the world’s oldest motorcycle rally. As the rally ages, however, so too has its main demographic. But health-related organizations are seeing a silver lining in this shift — and are seizing on this new chance to reach aging bikers in their element.

Flickr: jonszcz

It was a busy Friday for Governor Chris Sununu, who signed more than three dozen new bills into law.

mtwashingtonautoroad.com

About 1,300 runners will gather in Gorham Saturday morning for what sounds like a relatively easy task: A race with only one hill. The catch? That hill just happens to be the tallest peak on the east coast.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

Karen Fischer, of Manchester, was at a loss last year trying to find help for her teenage daughter after a suicide attempt. The local hospital didn’t have a pediatric mental health unit, and insurance wouldn’t approve a stay in the regular pediatric unit. As a result, her daughter was stuck in an emergency room hallway for three days, awaiting treatment.

Last fall, the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire reached an important milestone: They managed to get 4 percent of the vote in the governor’s race, giving them official party status and a place on New Hampshire ballots. But a snag for one candidate seeking to run in the House special election highlights the fact that many of the state election laws were still built for a two-party system.

SBA Administrator Linda McMahon on Twitter

Governor Chris Sununu spent Monday in Washington, meeting with leaders from a number of federal agencies: Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon and officials from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Sununu said his goal, in part, was to make up for what he views as inefficient advocacy by New Hampshire's Congressional delegation.

Paige Sutherland for NHPR

This story was updated Tuesday with new information.

On Monday, NHPR reported on a series of complaints alleging financial mismanagement and dysfunction at Hope for New Hampshire Recovery, which operates recovery centers throughout the state. Now, the governor’s office is asking both the Attorney General and the Department of Health and Human Services to look into the matter.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

At the urging of a New Hampshire family who lost their son to an overdose, Granite Health system is planning a new campaign to encourage people to safely dispose of leftover prescription drugs — its goal, and title, is “Zero Left.”

Since their son, Adam, died from an apparent fentanyl overdose in 2015, Jim and Jeanne Moser of East Kingston have made it their life’s work to educate others about the importance of safely disposing of extra medication.

CurrierMuseum Flickr

The 150th anniversary of Renowned Architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s birthday is today, June 8th, and people around the world — including right here in New Hampshire — are celebrating.

www.puc.nh.gov

After pulling his first nominee for the position, Gov. Chris Sununu brought forward a new nomination to oversee the state’s environmental agency at Wednesday’s executive council meeting: Public Utilities Commissioner Robert Scott, of Bow.

The Executive Council approved an $82,000 contract with a Florida-based company to review alleged child abuse and neglect cases that weren’t fully vetted before being closed last year, but only after peppering top DHHS officials with questions about the company's track record in other states, the cost of the contract and the scope of the review. 

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu will be traveling to a few high-profile out-of-state events this week: an "infrastructure summit" hosted by the Trump administration in Washington and another retreat hosted by former presidential candidate Mitt Romney. 

Vanderbuilt.edu

Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeff Myers says the state had some sense that Crotched Mountain was planning to close its longtime specialty hospital in Greenfield because of ongoing financial challenges, ahead of its vote to do just that Monday night.

"The management did contact me a couple of months ago to let me know it was becoming harder and harder to sustain, and that the CEO was working with the board with respect to the future of the hospital and it was very possible this decision might occur."

Crotched Mountain Foundation

Crotched Mountain Foundation's board voted Monday to close its longtime specialty hospital in Greenfield, likely by the end of August.

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