Government Watch / Politics / Veterans News

VA Continues to Fail Veterans

veterans-affairsFrom – – By Natalia Castro

The suicide of a 76 year old Navy veteran in the parking lot of a VA hospital after being denied emergency care is just the latest shock coming from the government health care system set up specifically to ensure that our nation’s returning warriors get treatment they need and what was promised to them.

The latest VA related death occurred two years after a massive scandal at the Veteran’s Administration revealed that thousands of veterans were not receiving critical care in a timely fashion, showing that rather than reformed, the VA is just as bad as ever. While our veterans continue to wait on the adequate care the government has promised, President Obama seems to have left this task to the next administration to handle.

John Cooper, a spokesman for Concerned Veterans for America told the Washington Times of April 2016 that “it has taken the VA two years to propose firing three senior leaders responsible for the Phoenix VA scandal, which led to nearly 300 veterans dying waiting for care.”

A lack of accountability and efficiency still plagues the system and veterans are continuing to suffer because of it, meanwhile the Obama administration consistently deceives the public and makes light of the situation.

In April, Military Times reported that VA Secretary Bob McDonald said 97 percent of VA appointments are completed within 30 days, with an average wait time of three to six days, despite a report from the Government Accountability Office showing that patients new to the VA health care system wait three to eight weeks for medical care. Often veterans cannot even see a primary care doctor at all due to, disorganized scheduling systems and mismanagement by VA workers.

But when Secretary McDonald was questioned at a media breakfast about the wait times he responded with “When you go to Disney, do they measure the number of hours you wait in line? What’s important is what’s your satisfaction with the experience, and that’s really the kind of measure I want to move to”

Comparing wait times which result in the death and delayed care of our nations veterans is hardly comparable to wait times at Disneyland. Yet to the Obama administration, this is how the VA dilemma is seen.

This past June a 15-member Commission on Care, made up mostly of health care professionals and veterans’ organization leaders, came together to analyze VA productions and develop suggestions for Congressional reform.

The findings of the Commission were clear “care delivered by VA is inconsistent from facility to facility, and can be substantially compromised by problems with access, service, and poorly functioning operational systems and processes…Fixing these problems requires deliberate, concurrent, and sequential actions.”

Fixing the VA has become a matter of an entire cultural change within the system; discarding all inefficient policies, doctored information, and archaic practices which fostered the current chaos. However, in the months since this report was released, once again Secretary McDonald has done nothing and the Obama Administration has allowed it.

If nothing else the VA catastrophe represents the lack of medical innovation and rampant corruption which comes with government mandated health care.

President Obama’s inaction makes one question if the American people will demand an administration which makes protecting those who protect us a priority, or will the benign neglect of the needs of those who served be allowed to continue because the problem is believed to be too big to solve.

Natalia Castro is a contributing editor at Americans for Limited Government


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Susan Truitt
2 years ago

My husband has been diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer. They found a nodule in his left lower lung in November and didn’t biopsy it until May. It could have been cured. But now they gave him 2yrs. because of the delays.

Daniel J Dick
2 years ago
Reply to  Susan Truitt

I’m not a veteran but my father and grandfathers were. Situations like this late diagnosis of cancer for this gentleman are part of why I felt so strongly that we don’t need to blow 11 billion for the DoD and 5 billion on Epic or Cerner EHR software just to get locked into and owned by a private company after the VA already spent $2 billion if I am not mistaken on VistA which it already owns and is excellent. That money could be used to care for veterans instead of buying an off the shelf EHR system.

When we ask why and get a weak, flimsy fake answer, shouldn’t we ask whether it is true and if so why it is true and why it is even important so that billions must be spent to achieve what they’re hoping to accomplish?

5 years ago

This is just another way Obama can kill Americans and get by with it when will the Republican Party start protecting the people and put him in jail or run him out of this country

5 years ago

I haven’t had any emergencies or critical needs, but the VA has always gotten me what I need in a timely manner. I think the people at VA are working very hard to satisfy Vets needs.

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