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Veterans Administration Tag

President Donald Trump made a promise on the campaign trail that he would reform our beleaguered Department of Veterans Affairs. The latest reform puts an and to official time within the department, which means that medical employees at the VA will not receive taxpayer money while doing work for the unions. From the VA news release:
“It’s common sense,” VA Acting Assistant Secretary for Human Resources and Administration Jacquelyn Hayes-Byrd said. “Allowing health care workers to do taxpayer-funded union work instead of serving Veterans impacts patient care negatively. President Trump has made it clear – VA employees should always put Veterans first. And when we hire medical professionals to take care of Veterans, that’s what they should do at all times. No excuses, no exceptions.”

The Wall Street Journal has released an article about a VA National Suicide Data Report that concluded the rise in suicides among young veterans has continued to climb even though the Department of Veteran Affairs has taken action to stop it. Overall veteran suicides has gone down, though.

President Donald Trump signed the VA MISSION Act into law this afternoon, which gives veterans more health care options in the private sector. Veterans now have the ability "to see private physicians if they do not receive needed treatment from VA medical facilities, as long as it is approved by a health provider."

Took long enough, but the scandal-plagued Veterans Administration will be under new management soon. Wednesday, Trump announced via Twitter, his plans to install a new VA Secretary.

USA Today has dropped another article on the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as the publication continues its investigation into the department. This investigation discovered that a VA policy has allowed hospitals to hire health care providers with revoked licenses, but it's illegal to do so thanks to a 1999 law:
The VA issued national guidelines in 2002 giving local hospitals discretion to hire clinicians after “prior consideration of all relevant facts surrounding” any revocations and as long as they still had a license in one state. But a federal law passed in 1999 bars the VA from employing any health care worker whose license has been yanked by any state.

USA Today has done an excellent investigation into the Department of Veteran Affairs. Its latest bombshell shows that the VA has hired doctors they know have malpractice claims and felony convictions. How could this possibly happen? A not so thorough hiring process:
Applications are vetted, education and licenses verified, references checked, and interviews conducted. For clinical hires, a review and approval by a professional standards board also is required. But when applicants disclose prior problems with medical licensing short of revocation, malpractice or criminal histories, VA hospital officials have discretion to weigh the providers’ explanations and approve their hiring anyway.

After three years of constant problems at Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals, the Senate passed a bill that will make it easier to fire offending VA employees currently protected by layers of bureaucracy. Fox News reported:
The bill would lower the burden of proof needed to fire employees -- from a "preponderance" to "substantial evidence," allowing a dismissal even if most evidence is in a worker's favor.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has faced scandal after scandal, some of which caused veterans to die while waiting for care. There was even a dentist putting veterans at risk for HIV. But the VA has also punished those who blow the whistle on VA wrong doings. President Trump took a step in the right direction to fix these problems when he signed an executive order that creates the "Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection" at the VA.