The bureaucrats of the Department of Veterans Affairs have displayed a consistent pattern of defending the organization against whistleblowers and the complaints of veteran patients the VA is mistreating. Now a key figure in the waiting list scandal, the scheduling clerk at the Phoenix VA facility, has gone public to say someone is still covering up deaths.
Hush Up Cover Up
Key reports on VA investigations are not made public or even given to Congress, according to one Senator, and should be released.
There is much more to this story.
The VA “Harmless Error” Defense
The general narrative of VA defenders has been set by the VA itself: sure, there are paperwork problems, but they don’t impact patient care — or so the story goes. A new report explains the VA bureaucracy strategy
The VA, and particularly the VA’s Office of the Medical Inspector (OMI), has consistently used a “harmless error” defense, where the Department acknowledges problems but claims patient care is unaffected. This approach has prevented the VA from acknowledging the severity of systemic problems and from taking the necessary steps to provide quality care to veterans. As a result, veterans’ health and safety has been unnecessarily put at risk.
Senator Calls for Release of Reports
U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), a member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, repeated his call for the release of reports by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of the Medical Inspector (OMI) on their investigations into wrongdoing at VA facilities.
“The Administration continues to say that action will be taken if ‘allegations prove to be true,’ but it is difficult to have faith in their word when we know the VA has turned a blind eye to wrongdoing for so long,” Sen. Moran said. “The fact is, many of the same VA facilities and cases receiving attention today have already been investigated and the claims have been substantiated in years past – yet we do not know what action has been taken because the OMI reports are not made public. The release of past and future OMI reports will allow Americans, the press, Congress and veterans to see what the VA knew, when they knew it and what they did about it.”
Whistleblower Scheduling Clerk Comes Forward
Records of dead veterans were changed or physically altered, some even in recent weeks, to hide how many people died while waiting for care at the Phoenix VA hospital, a whistle-blower told CNN in stunning revelations that point to a new coverup in the ongoing VA scandal.
“Deceased” notes on files were removed to make statistics look better, so veterans would not be counted as having died while waiting for care, Pauline DeWenter said.