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VA Scandal Worsens: 64,000 Vets never got appointments and another 57,000 forced to wait

VA Scandal Worsens: 64,000 Vets never got appointments and another 57,000 forced to wait

Systemic problems exposed in audit released today.

http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/us/2014/06/09/wolf-griffin-va-national-audit.cnn.html

An audit released by the Department of Veterans Affairs on Monday indicated that more than 57,000 veterans have been waiting three months or longer for their first appointment with a VA facility.

From the Associated Press:

More than 57,000 U.S. military veterans have been waiting 90 days or more for their first VA medical appointments, and an additional 64,000 appear to have fallen through the cracks, never getting appointments after enrolling and requesting them, the Veterans Affairs Department said Monday.

It’s not just a backlog problem, the wide-ranging review indicated. Thirteen percent of schedulers in the facility-by-facility report on 731 hospitals and outpatient clinics reported being told by supervisors to falsify appointment schedules to make patient waits appear shorter.

The audit is the first nationwide look at the VA network in the uproar that began with reports two months ago of patients dying while awaiting appointments and of cover-ups at the Phoenix VA center. A preliminary review last month found that long patient waits and falsified records were “systemic” throughout the VA medical network, the nation’s largest single health care provider serving nearly 9 million veterans.

The report indicated that as part of its actions to address the problems identified, the VA would “critically review its performance management, education and communication systems to determine how performance goals were conveyed across the chain of command such that some front-line, middle and senior managers felt compelled to manipulate VA’s scheduling processes.”

Late last month, upon the resignation of then VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, it was announced that 14-day wait time target goals would no longer be considered in employee job reviews, and that top level agency officials would not receive performance bonuses this year, according to another AP report.

The release of this latest review also follows the announcement last week that the Office of Special Counsel is investigating allegations of retaliation against dozens of whistleblowers in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

You can read the full report released Monday here.

Video report from CNN below.

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Comments

But there’s plenty of money to take the First “Lady” and several hundred of her closest acquaintances world hopping.

The media is still NOT on this story. While I’m tired of the retort, “if this happened under Bush,” but it’s more true than ever. This would be filling the first 10 minutes of every evening newscast every day with whistleblowers, vets, horror stories, etc., etc. The media is doing the minimum, hoping this will blow over.

Are there any Americans left in the media? Hello?

Are there any Americans left in Congress? For shame!

Henry Hawkins | June 9, 2014 at 11:04 pm

Some need to be on the losing end of a class action suit. Others need to hang.

There was a huge problem with wait times and service at the VA long before even Bush got in.

But it wasn’t until Obama that the union thugs who run the VA started paying themselves bonuses for faking the numbers.

Send the offenders to jail for fraud, and shut down the VA.

You can’t reform an institution which has been inefficient and corrupt since the day it was formed. There are better ways to give vets care – that they don’t have to drive hours to get to and wait, and letting them choose their own providers.

Another nothingburger. Here it is, clear as day –

to determine how performance goals were conveyed across the chain of command such that some front-line, middle and senior managers felt compelled to manipulate VA’s scheduling processes

The official line will be that the entire system isn’t riddled with bums, criminals, scammers and lowlifes; au contraire, they’re all good bureaucrats who were led astray by someone. Purge that someone, and the hogs can dash back to the trough with no further interruptions. The someone was Shinseki, the man who had to die so that others may continue sucking blood.

Conservative0317 | June 10, 2014 at 9:04 am

Instead of just not paying bonuses this year, I want that any bonuses that were awarded in locations that falsified the wait times must be paid back as a punishment for unethical and immoral behavior. They defrauded the government AND the veterans. They should be grateful they are not being charged and sentenced to prison!

Prosecuting Department of Veterans Affairs officials who broke the law and firing those who deliberately manipulated reported wait times to hide long backlogs is the surest way of ending fraudulent practices, the agency’s interim inspector general told a House committee Monday.
http://washingtonexaminer.com/prosecutions-firings-needed-at-veterans-affairs-ig-testifies/article/2549507

That has GOT to happen.

Oh, and stop this “bonus” BS. Do your job, earn your pay, or get fired.

I R A Darth Aggie | June 10, 2014 at 9:38 am

Remind people that this is what government run health care looks like. A bureaucrat will deny you care, and lie about it in the pursuit of a bonus.

And you won’t know you’ve been denied care, just that you can’t get in to see someone about your problem.

JackRussellTerrierist | June 10, 2014 at 7:13 pm

This entire debacle is a crying, national shame.

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