Friendly Fire: Death, Delay & Dismay at the VA   [open pdf - 9MB]

"Too many men and women who bravely fought for our freedom are losing their lives, not at the hands of terrorists or enemy combatants, but from friendly fire in the form of medical malpractice and neglect by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Split-second medical decisions in a war zone or in an emergency room can mean the difference between life and death. Yet at the VA, the urgency of the battlefield is lost in the lethargy of the bureaucracy. Veterans wait months just to see a doctor and the Department has systemically covered up delays and deaths they have caused. For decades, the Department has struggled to deliver timely care to veterans. The reason veterans care has suffered for so long is Congress has failed to hold the VA accountable. Despite years of warnings from government investigators about efforts to cook the books, it took the unnecessary deaths of veterans denied care from Atlanta to Phoenix to prompt Congress to finally take action. On June 11, 2014, the Senate recently approved a bipartisan bill to allow veterans who cannot receive a timely doctor's appointment to go to another doctor outside of the VA […] Good employees inside the VA who try to bring attention to problems or errors are punished, bullied, put on 'bad boy' lists, and transferred to other locations. These whistleblowers, who come forward to expose the problems, demonstrate many employees within the VA are dedicated to serving veterans and willing to put their livelihood at risk to ensure our nation's heroes are getting the care they were promised."

Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Office of Senator Tom Coburn, M.D.: http://www.coburn.senate.gov/
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