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Thursday, December 19, 2013

VA Is Broken: Death, Medical Mistreatment, Claims Backlogs And Neglect

By Jamie Reno
International Business Times
Originally posted on November 27, 2013

Here is an excerpt:

One presidential administration after another has vowed to fix the embattled VA, which employs more than 300,000 men and women and is the second largest department in the federal government after the Pentagon. President Obama has even increased VA's annual budget to an all-time high of $150 billion. But VA’s health care system continues to worsen in more and more dangerous ways, severely underserving the nearly 7 million veterans who rely on the network for care annually.

In just the past year, we've learned about at least 21 preventable deaths of military veterans at VA facilities across the nation as well as the spread of infectious diseases at these hospitals and clinics. In addition, there is evidence of bonuses awarded to executives at troubled VA hospitals and a lengthy ongoing disability claims backlog. Meanwhile, frustrated lawmakers hold hearings on VA shortcomings, adopt new rules in hopes of turning the VA around, and even create websites highlighting VA's many problems -- to no avail.

“It’s become apparent to me and many others that there is a culture of complacency among the agency’s middle management,” Rep. Jeffrey Miller (R-Fla.), chair of the House Veterans Affairs Committee (HVAC), told International Business Times.

The entire story is here.

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