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Home Columns A Cup O' Kapeng Barako Several Veterans, Patients at VA Hospitals Waited, Suffered and Died
Several Veterans, Patients at VA Hospitals Waited, Suffered and Died PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - A Cup O' Kapeng Barako
Written by Jesse Jose   
Wednesday, 04 June 2014 21:49



By Jesse Jose

A Cup O' Kapeng Barako
 
 
T here's one word to describe the escalating Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) scandal: ABHORRENT. 
 
As the days go by, the "secret list" keeps getting longer and longer as more VA hospitals all over the country are being found out of possessing this "secret list."
 
As we all know, the VA hospital in Phoenix Arizona has been the center of this "secret list" controversy when a whistle blower, a retired doctor who used to work at that hospital for several years, divulged in an interview with CNN this cover up created by managers to hide the fact that more than 1,400 veterans were forced to wait many months to see a doctor and 40 have died while waiting for their medical appointments.
 
To this date, 42 other VA Hospitals and more than 60% of 216 VA hospitals all over the country have also been discovered to have practiced this cover up, that now heads must roll. 
 
This resulted in the forced resignation of Mr. Eric Shinseki, the Secretary of Veteran Affairs.  There was a clamor for his resignation.
 
The Obama Administration needed a sacrificial lamb, and for a head to roll to appease the anger of veterans of this country and the noisy clamor of congressmen on both sides of the aisle for the head of Mr. Shinseki.
 
I like Mr. Shinseki.  He's a retired Army four-star general and a Vietnam veteran who was severely injured during his combat tour there.  He's a good man, a brave man, who laid his life on the line for this country.  He's an American hero.
 
I don't think he was at fault for this abhorrent secret list.  Surely, he didn't know of the existence of this secret list until its divulgement.  I think the people at fault were those administrators and managers at VA hospitals who were aware of this secret waiting list, yet filed their reports to the VA secretary that everything within their area of responsibility were fine and dandy and that veterans under their care were well taken care of. 
 
They did this to receive their bonuses.  And that's truly abhorrent!  
 
It's their heads that should roll, not Mr. Shinseki's.
 
Being a disabled Vietnam-era veteran myself, I use the Puget Sound VA facility in Seattle.  True, I sometimes have to wait for long periods of time for my primary care appointments and follow-ups with physician specialists, but despite of the wait, I've received excellent medical care. 
 
I guess I am one of the lucky ones.
 
The VA's internal documents showed that the troubled agency has known since at least 2008 that VA hospital managers and administrators manipulate the scheduling system to mask delays in care  -- what a 2010 memo called "gaming strategies."  That memo listed "inappropriate scheduling practices" at VA medical facilities dating back to 2008.
 
And in 2012 it was concluded that the VA's reporting on its medical- appointment waiting times was "unreliable, outdated and in need of complete overhaul."
 
Abhorrent, indeed.
 
A TRAITOR IN EXCHANGE FOR FIVE TALIBANS?:  Another BHO scandal that's also brewing right now across the country, is the groundswell of rising anger over BHO's palpak decision on the deal that freed U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl in exchange for five senior Taliban leaders and murderers of Americans.
 
And the gradual telling of facts that this army sergeant deserted his post to join the Taliban.  And that six soldiers from his platoon died fighting the Talibans while tracking him down.  I'll have more on this in my next Barako column.  For now, that's all.  JJ 



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Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 July 2014 15:06
 

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