VA bosses in 7 states falsified vets’ wait times for care

Last month I wrote about a Veteran taking his own life after his call for help went to an answering machine. A few day’s ago I pointed out that Ted Cruz was out hunting while Donald Trump was laying out what he would do for our veterans. If you’ve been paying attention you would know that Ted sure is ready to send our troops anywhere, anytime, even risking a fight with nuclear Russia. If you care about our Veteran’s you should know Ted Cruz’s record on supporting Veteran’s is abysmal. So it boils down to he would gladly send them on risky missions to defend other countries, but he has no intention of helping them when they return.

Not only is our government falling short on treating troops with PTSD the Veterans Administration has been falsifying wait times. USA Today reports;

WASHINGTON — Supervisors instructed employees to falsify patient wait times at Veterans Affairs’ medical facilities in at least seven states, according to a USA TODAY analysis of more than 70 investigation reports released in recent weeks.

Overall, those reports — released after multiple inquiries and a Freedom of Information Act request — reveal for the first time specifics of widespread scheduling manipulation.

Employees at 40 VA medical facilities in 19 states and Puerto Rico regularly “zeroed out” veteran wait times, the analysis shows. In some cases, investigators found manipulation had been going on for as long as a decade. In others, it had been just a few years.

In many cases, facility leaders told investigators they clamped down the scheduling improprieties after the Phoenix scandal, but in others cases, investigators found they had continued unabated.The manipulation masked growing demand as new waves of veterans returned from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and as Vietnam veterans aged and needed more health care.

In 2014, The Arizona Republic, part of the USA TODAY NETWORK, and other media revealed scheduling manipulation at Phoenix VA Medical Center and that dozens of veterans died while waiting for care. Subsequent reporting that year showed that similar problems extended nationwide. Investigators had said manipulation was “systemic,” but they did not identify which facilities had problems and how serious they were. The inspector general soon launched investigations of more than 100 facilities.

The newly released findings of those probes show that supervisors instructed schedulers to manipulate wait times in Arkansas, California, Delaware, Illinois, New York, Texas and Vermont, giving the false impression facilities there were meeting VA performance measures for shorter wait times.

In some cases, the system encouraged manipulation even without explicit instruction from supervisors. A manager in West Palm Beach, Fla., sent out laudatory emails touting the shorter wait times the system showed. Schedulers in Harlingen, Texas, reported being berated by supervisors when they booked appointments showing longer wait times for veterans. (It was “not pretty,” one employee said.)

In some cases — in Gainesville, Fla., White River Junction, Vt., and Philadelphia, for example — they found VA employees improperly kept lists of veterans needing care outside the scheduling system, a violation that also hid actual wait times.

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