…to bring the Veterans Administration within the Department of Defense, to be run by active duty military personnel from mid-level management on up.
Now it seems to be killing our veterans through neglect.
Last week, Jeff Miller (R, FL) Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs, said the panel’s investigators concluded as many as 40 Arizona veteran deaths could be related to VA delays in providing them medical care.
Some veterans say wait times now average 55 days.
It gets worse.
Miller also said panel investigators had evidence that officials at the Phoenix VA Health Care System kept two sets of records to hide lengthy wait times for patients seeking doctor appointments and treatment, the Arizona Republic reported.
Dr Sam Foote, a former VA doctor in the Phoenix system, told Megyn Kelly on “The Kelly File” Thursday night “we believe senior management obviously had knowledge of this.”
Earlier, he told CNN that the alleged secret waiting list was used by senior management to conceal the fact that 1,400 to 1,600 sick veterans were forced to wait months to see a doctor.
It gets even worse. Apparently, the VA also just moves its mismanagers around, rather than terminating them.
Sharon Helman, Director of the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care system [a member of the “senior management” about which Foote talked above], is accused with other management officials of keeping a fake waiting list that made it appear sick veterans were being treated in a timely manner—while hiding the real list that showed up to 1,600 sick veterans were waiting months to see a physician.
From July 2007 through the first week of July 2008, at least 22 veterans in the Spokane VA service area committed suicide. During that same time period, however, Spokane VA reported nine suicides and 34 attempted suicides, according to Military.com and other media outlets.
Helman was director of the Spokane facility at the time the number of suicides were being misreported.
Or maybe it’s time to utterly disband the VA altogether, returning all VA personnel other than the doctors and nurses to the private sector. Then build, from the ground up, an entirely different facility whose function would be to take care of our wounded, the families of our fallen, and to help those who separate or retire get on with their lives in their new environment.
This VA is an insult to our soldiers. It’s an insult to our nation.