Paranoid VA Officials

Benjamin KrauseParanoid VA officials use hyperbole and fear mongering to justify an unethical policy to reduce transparency while at the same time confirming that vets scare VA employees.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is not only pioneering how to take down a disruptive vet (the crash test dummy is a simulated veteran), but they are now seeking to revoke a veteran’s right to his medical records after a Compensation and Pension (C&P) exam because of a ludicrous fear of veterans.

Dr. Gerald Cross, head of VA’s Office of Disability and Medical Assessment, used outrageous and insulting hyperbole to get his point across rather than hard data when speaking with national media about the proposed change. His point is that veterans are scary so VA needs to revoke our rights:

“He walks past the [compensation-and-pension] clinic, and he’s very angry. Goes into the C-and-P clinic, and we have an incident of some kind,” said Dr. Cross. “Some of our C-and-P clinics are quite small, … and it doesn’t have much in the way of reasonable defense. We’re very concerned about that.”

Incident? What kind of incident would require violating a veteran’s right to review the C&P medical exam that is included in her VA medical file? I can only conclude they mean a violent incident, otherwise nothing else would warrant such an infringement. And why did VA, both explicitly and through implication, described a hyperbolic veteran with psychopathic tendencies who scares women without data or real life examples?

The article by the National Journal described a VA culture of paranoia and fear with its anxieties fixated on the same veterans the agency is sworn to serve. We now know beyond a doubt that VA officials are afraid of veterans. Apparently, at the core of this paranoid fear is the belief that veterans are so unhinged that we must be prevented from reading the results of a mere medical exam because there is a heightened risk we will act like crazed criminal psychos and cause an “incident.” According to the National Journal and related sources, “crazed psychos” is probably what a lot of VA employees think of us veterans these days as VA manipulates fears to justify a slow erosion of our rights and engage in training to take us down.

SOURCE: VA Moves to Prevent Veteran Violence Over Disability Claims

 

SO WHAT IS THE DOWNSIDE OF THE POLICY?

Rhetoric aside, this policy change proposal would withhold medical records created by the C&P examiner until after the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) has made benefits decision. The records would no longer be available to a pro se veteran through the Blue Button My HealtheVet portal, and the veteran would not be able to review them until after the benefits decision. VA claims this delay will reduce risk of assault against VA examiners, but in reality, it reduces transparency and oversight.

In light of Dr. Cross’s statements, VA officials appear to be doing little more than stigmatizing a protected class of people due to paranoid delusions created while under the influence of trash Hollywood psycho movies. That protected class of people are disabled veterans who where required to keep their cool while in very difficult and stressful situations while in military service. Now VA claims their fear of vets warrants a reduction in transparency.

Yet, how can VA call veterans “heroes” on the one hand while stigmatizing these same individuals by labeling them as criminal psychos VA doctors must be protected from? Is this a bigger sign that VA doctors are so disconnected that they no longer know how to interact appropriately with patients?

My take on this is that VA officials are using hyperbole and fear as a red herring to justify this reduction in transparency and violations of a veteran’s right to access their medical records in a timely manner. Medical records are, after all, the property of the patient.

I have a question. Why is President Obama letting his VA officials turn this agency into a perpetual Animal Farm where VA pigs are greater than everyone else? It seems like horrendous timing for politicians on the Left come this November’s election.

At the core of this is the premise that all disabled veterans must be presumed dangerous; so dangerous in fact that VA must keep them from their medical records. That is, VA must keep them from their records until after VBA makes a decision, then the presumed dangerous criminal veteran will be not as dangerous, supposedly.

This logic is lost on me. Somehow a dangerous veteran will be less dangerous after she is wrongly denied benefits because of a botched C&P exam? Why is VA presuming the risk is so great that it must deny access to medical records created during the C&P exam? What is the proof? Where is the data?

 

THIS FEAR OF VETERANS IS ONLY A RED HERRING

This new VA logic appears to be more of a shell game to impede oversight of the C&P process while using the notion that vets scare VA employees as a red herring.

Will violent veterans really be less violent after receiving bad news from both an examiner and VBA? Should VA be afraid of veterans to begin with? What kind of message does this send America? “If you serve your country, you will treated like a violent criminal later.”

The excuse for the proposed policy change is a red herring because it trots out this delusional and paranoid VA employee fear mongering of veterans to justify less transparency and less veterans rights. However, the reasoning is based on a flawed argument with no data support stated to the press. It is as if VA is saying, “Because of my delusional and paranoid fear of you, will you let me treat you like a criminal?”

 

LEGAL IMPLICATIONS OF NO C&P RECORD ACCESS

This policy change is illegal on its face because it withholds property (medical records) and it creates an environment of greater risk to a disabled veteran’s health. That risk is an increased risk of medical malpractice by not allowing a veteran to review medical records for accuracy prior to treatment. This should be a reasonable concern since C&P records are included for that purpose within VA’s medical health records system called VistA.

How often have you heard of a VA examiner making a horrific mistake during an exam? What happens if a VHA physician then uses that mistake to make an erroneous diagnostic decision? The veteran will be harmed or killed.

Further, the change would increase instances where a VA examiner’s mistake caused an improper denial of benefits and resulted in more bureaucratic roadblocks and backlogs. VA processes over 1 million claims per year. Do you have any idea of how many VA examinations contain material errors that a veteran would correct prior to a VA decision?

But apparently Dr. Cross and friends are comfortable with that increased threat to veterans’ health and due process rights. But can he really claim the reason is because his employees are paranoid and irrationally afraid of the people they have served for over 100 years? Are VA employees watching too much trash TV and playing too many video games like Call of Duty? What is so different today about VA employees than in the past? Are they smarter? Or more ethical? Or more sensitive?

 

WHAT CHANGED TO NECESSITATE THE POLICY PUSH?

One significant change is the use of VA’s secret Disruptive Behavior Committees (DBC) that utilize profiling and other strategies to identify “high risk” veterans under the VA Behavior Threat Management Program. This means VA employees are focusing more than ever on perceived “high risk” traits such as raising your voice and disagreeing with authority figures. The program has its roots in Portland, Oregon, and Lynn Van Male, PhD, psychologist and longtime VA employee, currently runs the program from her perch out there.

RELATED: Dr. Van Male’s presentation on Veterans as Predators

Veteran Therapeutic ContainmentAs noted, the program teaches VA staff about profiling veterans and therapeutic containment of veterans (VAnguard, pg. 14-15). Does that photo look therapeutic to you if instead of a crash test dummy it was a 65 year old Vietnam veteran? Do you think this kind of new training makes VA employees more scared of veterans than before?

Regularly, I hear of veterans being thrown to the wolves before these DBC’s because the veteran uttered displeasure at the decision of a VA health care professional. Sometimes the threat is real, but often the threat is either irrationally perceived or alleged for retaliatory purposes to blacklist an outspoken veteran.

At least one VA official did voice opposition to this unethical position to restrict access to C&P examination records. “I hate to say this, but what is the ethical justification of removing the C-and-P exams from the Blue Button?” asked Michael Simberkoff. He is the executive chief of staff at the VA’s NY Harbor Healthcare System.

 

ANOTHER VA OFFICIAL CONFIRMS PARANOID FEAR

Nonetheless, other VA officials clung to their story on this one without any stated data supporting the need for the unethical VA policy change:

But department officials tied the move to one factor: Potential risk to VA staffers. In addition to changing when a veteran can see part of his or her file online, they are also considering adding extra security to the clinics, such as requiring a code to unlock doors.

“Many of the C-and-P docs are females, and they seem to be the ones that seem to have the evening hours or are in these far-flung [clinics],” said Denny Devine, the VA’s project executive for disability and medical assessments. “Those are the ones on our weekly calls raising these concerns.”

But where is your data, Dr. Cross and Denny Devine? Are these VA employee fears justified? What studies have you run to compare these two groups? Will the policy reduce any risk at all? Have you done any assessment?

When you read the piece in the National Journal, the clear answer is, “No, and we do not care.” They do not care because their Animal Farm pigs are more important that veterans.

This begs a few questions. Are veterans more likely to be criminally dangerous than civilians? How about criminals who are innocent before proven guilty? Why does military service give a person less rights than those of a criminal?

Further, in this environment of criminal records falsification and wait list scandals, is it really a great time to create more barriers for veterans to review their medical records? Can we trust that VA employees will not tamper with records?

In response to this problem, I wrote Secretary Robert McDonald an email expressing my disappointment with this increased obfuscation and insulting treatment of veterans.

You should email him to and tell him I said “Hi”: [email protected]. Provide him with some of the answers to my questions above and send me a copy!

 

LETTER TO SECRETARY ROBERT MCDONALD

Dear Secretary Robert McDonald,

This is why your VA is broken.

VA executives are making decisions based on hyperbole, hypotheticals, and at best an anecdote or two while ignoring its long history of working with veterans and a veteran’s right to property in the form of their medical records. This decision must be ethical and justified with data. VA has lots of data. Why is VA not using its data to justify this decision to the public????? Why are you, Secretary McDonald, allowing this kind of unethical behavior?

My assumption is that this fear and panic is based on research of the Patient Flag System that originated at the Portland VA in the 80’s. However, this kind of profiling (secret Disruptive Behavior Committees – Category 1 Veterans) is unconstitutional, unethical, not justified and only increases fear and panic within VA employees across the country through unneeded training to profile veterans while not training them to understand veterans in a healthy and holistic manner.

What other hospital systems in the country do this the way VA does?

The medical records created are the property of the veteran. I have seen no justification beyond hyperbole as to why VA needs to change this policy now regarding access to patient records. Were there actual instances of a veteran doing this or are VA staffers so disconnected and fearful of the population they have served for 100 years that now suddenly this extreme disconnect has created greater fear and panic than ever before?

C&P exams are medical reports used by both VBA and VHA. VHA uses them to treat, and if there are errors — which we all know exist — VA will be liable for medical malpractice. Further, by allowing a veteran access to her property, it gives her a chance to get a second opinion or to address errors before her claim is processed incorrectly. This policy will only increase instances of due process violations and medical malpractice. So I am confused as to what the justification is beyond the outrageous hypotheticals posted by Dr. Gerald Cross?

If nothing else, this is a sign VA does not know its veterans anymore. What a shame.

I would appreciate a response, Secretary McDonald.

Thank you,

Benjamin Krause, Esq.

Founder, DisabledVeterans.org

 

49 COMMENTS

  1. Obama is laughing at us veterans for our powerlessness before him.

    Remember when President Ebola placed White House Deputy Chief of Staff Rob Nabors as a “Cleaner” to whitewash the VA scandal, protect corrupt VA bureaucrats, and blame the victimized veterans as the problem?

    Well, here’s more proof that all you Obama loyalists are ignorant, deceived, or calculatingly ruthless in your support for the most anti-American veteran administration this great country has ever had!

    Per a VA whistleblower, “Unfortunately that complaint, which was given to White House Deputy Chief of Staff Rob Nabors, somehow made its way back to Atlanta, where my manager was able to retaliate against me,” he recalled.”

    Suck it, Obama supporters!

    http://insider.foxnews.com/2014/10/23/va-whistleblower-scott-davis-alleges-threats-retaliation-speaking-fox-news

  2. Well, here we go again with some more adverse behavior by the VA against veterans. They realize how they’re low-balling us all the time on our claims and harming us, so now they figure they have to take more adverse actions against us by taking us down whenever we complain or try to question some of their actions. They’ve got their generic cops (VA police) they’ll call to take you down for doing something rather minor like raising your voice or looking at someone a certain way.

  3. Well, well, well now how do you suppose the average American (MALE OR FEMALE) came to be such a GOOFBALL ? Let us look at the training we get, for free, and the SITUATIONS they force us into, for NATIONAL SECURITY, and all the other BS they put us through before they TOSS us out like OLD DIRTY RAGS. Hmmm, maybe there is a connection, for sure we were not that way when we were DRAFTED or enlisted. Our govt would not allow such a thing to happen.
    All I am saying is, it is something to think about.

  4. Without doing current research, I know the VA had courses at one time on line on how to deal with veterans with PTSD. It has generally been ignored.

    I am rated 100% for PTSD. I have anger issues and anxiety attacks, especially when I go to the VA. Even though I am non-violent, I am very careful not to raise my voice or become threatening in any manner. (Non-violent meaning I would never strike someone unless defending myself). Even though I no longer go to the Wilkes-Barre VAMC, when I first went, I was surprised to see the VA Cop shop right next to the Mental Health clinic. How’s that for giving you a little paranoia?

    You must be extremely careful in what you say to a VA employee. Saying something like I had to smack my dog can land you in an interview which, of course, will be in your medical record. Yet, the VA hires veterans who are ex-cons in numerous non-medical positions. Go figure.

    • I’ve been treated poorly by several va staff members. I’ve never had the VA popo called on me, but I was sent to an advocate after raising my voice to a 20 year old snot nose tech who definitely disrespected me. I was wrong in that I called her a bleep so I did the right thing and apologized. She said she was going to reschedule me for a procedure because I was late. In fact, I was 5 minutes early. She had the nerve to call me a liar. The check in clerk proved that I was early for my appointment. It’s a 3 hour round trip so I wasn’t having it. Of course she never apologized. The waiting room was flooded with frustrated vets on that day and lil ole me put a smile on everyone’s face

  5. Well, I basically told them they were idiots and have prolong the scenario with my back for so long, asking me to come sit in a class for a test I can assist in means “oh joy” let me sit in a car then sit some more because I am ready to go “postal” on stupid and meant what I clearly stated-“I take no issue reporting each of you because a “medical record” in the real world of medicine, is a legal document and when a witness is brought in to see the interaction-gee YA think it will be hard?
    “WHERE’S THE BEEF?” MacDONALD YOU SEEM TO REALLY HAVE THAT 15% CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHERE IS THE OTHER 85% YOU SO PROMISED VETERANS? I THREW DOWN THE GAUNTLET AND A STRAIGHT SHOOTER I AM. “GET YOUR MIND OFF OF PAIN MANAGEMEENT OR RHEUMATOLOGY AND SEND ME TO THE SPINE CLINIC WHICH WAS THE ONE DOCTORS CONSULT-GEE I BELIEVE HE IS RIGHT! WE SHALL SEE LATER, BUT NEXT GAME THEY BETTER PRAY LIKE HELL, I DO NOT PLAY THESE GAMES! WHEN YOU GO FROM WALKING STUBBORNLY SO, TO A CANE THEN A WALKER, IT IS KILLER IN A CAR, AND I LIKE MY FREEDOM IN MY CAR, CALL ME WEIRD!
    NO SURPRISES BEN, THE DIRECTOR WHO WAS ON FAUX PAS VIEWS JUST HAD TO PUSH THAT “HOWEVER” BUTTON. WELL IT JUST MIGHT BE HIS UNHAPPIEST MOMENT-IF YOU FLAG ME PLEASE MAKE IT A RAINBOW OF COLORS, I LIKE COLOR!

  6. Lets look at the history of medical records being withheld. They could be withheld for Mental Health reasons, all the way back to the 70’s.

    Today’s Veterans are smarter, they know how to look things up on the internet. They find their records are full of error, and when they confront the provider, instead of correcting the error and being accountable, the provider recommends the Veteran seek a mental Health evaluation.

    The withholding of records is far more serious than just C&P.
    All Records for any Reason are the Property of the Person, and should never be withheld. Is this not why we have the Freedom of Information Act..

  7. Ben,

    Thank you for your incredible reporting and continued support of Veterans similarly situated … in the case I’m prosecuting “Trueman v. Obama, et al.,” and here is what I just shot off to the Defendant DOJ attorney covering up all RICO Act crimes and treason per se:

    NOTICE OF NEWLY DISCOVERED RICO ACT EVIDENCE & NEXUS TO SCOUS-FDM-SECOND RATIONAL (FDM-SR) FEDERAL RELATION BACK AND EQUITABLE TOLLING OF ALL 21-9/12 YEARS OF CASE OF FIRST IMPRESSION CLAIMS & REQUESTS FOR RELIEF & DEMAND TO PRESERVE EVIDENCE OF “PATIENT FLAG SYSTEM”

    Mr. Royster:

    With regard to the above captioned daily corruption and petition to amend the Third Complaint, I will speak very frank with you after learning today of the “Defendant DVA-Flag-System” that now establishes the solid foundation for all RICO Act relief and future criminal RICO prosecutions if this case continues to be covered up.
    Again, since you refuse to recuse yourself knowing you are now a pending defendant in the Fourth Amended Complaint for failing to communicate with me as a federal litigant pro se; the following newly discovered evidence and article is provided for the official record entitled: “Paranoid VA Officials Paint Veterans as Crazed Psychos”: http://www.disabledveterans.org/2014/10/24/paranoid-va-officials-paint-veterans-crazed-psychos/

    First, let me update the amended complaints demand for substantial justice and damages to include special damages as my homeless experience and added aggravation of all SCOUS-FDM-SR conditions continue to be triggered due to Defendant DOJ’s covering up “Murder Inc.” in violation of the IG Act and Title 18—as you very well know and are engaged in as the attorney of record in this lawsuit. Last notice on October 31, 2014 with regard to the pending constitutional challenge of the Veterans-Homeless Act we have now reached Day 35 and my desire to help other similarly situated Veterans in the future with the now—35 Million in special damages. Added to the 137-Million demand on September 23, 2014 total compensatory and punitive damages in this case under all cited federal case laws to include but not limited to: Deasy and Truman, we have now reached a stunning 172-Million dollars based upon the totality of all case law specifically mentioned in this litigation beginning with the initial federal military reprisal claim of February 7, 1993 at my 10 ½ year juncture of my exemplary military career and this case of first impression under the SCOUS-FDM. Since you cannot understand what I am saying as proclaimed to the Court—that date for the record was Day 1 of this 21-year, 8-month, 17-day or daily duration of pain and suffering totaling 79,029-days of absolute hell was the threat: “Trueman shut your mouth or we will destroy your career …” and that they [All Keller v. Dalton et al.] defendants who lost that $200,000.00 plus DOJ abuse of taxpayers’ money to defend it—estimated at $500,000.00 carried out on January 13, 1994 for which I mention for relation back purposes in this case of first impression.
    Discovery: With regard to the “Patient Flag System” the totally of the Defendant DVA/DOJ record shows that in or about 2004—during a chronic period of homeless for me; I petitioned the Defendant-BVA RO in Portland and now reasonably believe, my records were “flagged” at that time. For the record, they are flagged now as many BVA officials I communicate with cannot access my records as their security levels are too low.

    As the above-source document proclaims and relevant in this case and for pending “FTCA” medical malpractice claims in light of the December 31, 2013 Defendant VHA-denial to redress the “Military Reprisal Trauma (MRT)” claim and overrode two VHA medical officials who found I suffer MRT-PTSD to Chronic Adjustment Disorder (CAD) and still denied SCOUS-FDM-SR service-connected as the preponderance of the evidence shows in this case; I submit with regard to all Cushman-precedent-Fourth Amendment-property rights and interest arguments in this case and your client’s Defendant DVA-Kirby FOIA/PA violations now reaching nearly one-year since my FOIA/PA to obtain the Kirby-Incident reprisal occurred:

    “VA executives are making decisions based on hyperbole, hypotheticals, and at best an anecdote or two while ignoring its long history of working with veterans and a veteran’s right to property in the form of their medical records. This decision must be ethical and justified with data. VA has lots of data. Why is VA not using its data to justify this decision to the public????? Why are you, Secretary McDonald, allowing this kind of unethical behavior?
    The medical records created are the property of the veteran. I have seen no justification beyond hyperbole as to why VA needs to change this policy now regarding access to patient records. Were there actual instances of a veteran doing this or are VA staffers so disconnected and fearful of the population they have served for 100 years that now suddenly this extreme disconnect has created greater fear and panic than ever before?

    C&P exams are medical reports used by both VBA and VHA. VHA uses them to treat, and if there are errors — which we all know exist — VA will be liable for medical malpractice. Further, by allowing a veteran access to her property, it gives her a chance to get a second opinion or to address errors before her claim is processed incorrectly. This policy will only increase instances of due process violations and medical malpractice. So I am confused as to what the justification is beyond the outrageous hypotheticals posted by Dr. Gerald Cross?” (emphasis added).
    For the record, I have received a call from the Defendant DVA/VBA Appeals board last Friday, October 17, 2014 and informed my July 9, 2012 ALJ hearing and all newly arising evidence to date are now in final review by the BVA attorney. As the DVA-Scandal has proven itself—750 lawyers at Defendant DVA and DOJ lawyers living the good life off our blood, sweat, tears, traumas, reprisals and the lot as cited in the above article—are critical aspects of this case of first impression and why all federal question challenges under the SCOUS-FDM criminal abuses you are defending instead of prosecuting is why—this case must be established as a federal precedent to ensure U.S. Federal Whistleblowers in general—never have to experiencing all 172-Million dollars in trauma damages I’ve have experienced and near death by “DVA-Murder-Inc” for which my calculations according to your client’s DVA establishes at 22-Veterans per day killing themselves due to the RICO Act corrupt organization the entire world—now knows is taking place due to corrupted lawyers placing their jobs and own personal agendas over the SCOUS-FDM is a charge of treason that it’s time is coming either in this legal process or before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in this case. As such, my calculations are these—in the precise time this First Amendment Federal Whistleblower military/DVA case has been going on for 79,029 days is the MURDER and cover up of an estimated 17,386,338 Americans or legal citizens who entered the U.S. Armed Forces to protect and defend the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights to only find themselves killed or injured by so-called public servants who are evil to the core and or too cowardly to do the right thing as is crystal clear by your handling or covering up this case.

    I have long proclaimed that the SCOUS-Feres Doctrine Rule of Law has injured or killed more Americans than all wars since the American Revolution and by the Defendant DVA’s own admission of 22-Veterans per day dying, while awaiting benefits and the above supporting evidence to establish said fact; once again the 38USC511 and SCOUS-Feres Doctrine nexus is alive and well in this case as of this email.
    Now, either start negotiating and just settlement or recuse yourself as you are obstructing justice as I see it Mr. Royster. If it pleases the Court, please forgive my PTS triggers at this moment in time; as the discovery of my “DVA-retaliatory-flagging-status” per se has angered me in just knowing, these Defendant DOJ attorneys and DVA-Attorneys are living a RICO Act-Criminal enterprise while we U.S. Veterans die at 22 per day is high treason without a shadow of a doubt.

    If it pleases the Court, Judge Fox, although it is clearly evident that my PTS/APDs have been seriously triggered by the discovery of the “DVA-Flag-System” and Attorney Krause’s article and letter to the pending Defendant DVA-Secretary McDonald [who will be released if his VBA-Attorney rights all SCOUS-FDM-SR wrongs this week]; I wish to state for the record and my own safety from these RICO criminals that—I’ve been attending “recovery-meetings” at 3 to 4 per day to keep my PTS and nearly five-years of sobriety in check. We are clearly reaching a very dangerous aspect of this high treason case—where Defendant Obama defendants merit life in prison sentences under American law—so who knows what sneaky tactic such as the Kirby/McQuade Incidents these people have up their sleeves at this point in time. In short, Satan and his minions have no limits in what they will do—since they are getting away with “Murder Inc.” at the rate of 22 U.S. Veterans per day. A chilling statistic that goes beyond the scope of justice and numbers that Saddam, ISIS/ISIL and all other foreign enemies could never dream of achieving as the domestic terrorists we U.S. Veterans and advocates have been fighting for decades as the Defendant DVA-Scandal clearly has established under the U.S. Constitution and in support of high treason and treachery of Defendant DOJ lawyers who are aiding and abetting said “War on Veterans” and our loved ones in real time.

    In sum, as a God-fearing American, Veteran, Father and Grandfather—I strongly urge you Mr. Royster to pick up the phone and start negotiating an amicable solution wherein all this lawsuit and its requests for relief can be utilized by the new Secretary who has communicated with me—for establish genuine Rule Changes at DVA/VBA/VHA that serve to protect Veterans and their loved ones—not kill them!
    With grave concerns,
    /s/
    Jeffrey A. Trueman
    cc: Judge Fox/ABC News 20/20

  8. The V.A. employees can lie to dbc and get away with it, just by stating the veteran did something disruptive and they do not have to provide any proof at all, they are letting hear say into the matter and only hear say. In 2004 they the V.A. employee, who had a personel vendeta against me, from when I worked for the V.A. and had made a comment about how I felt that she had not done a very good job as chair person of a certain committee she had been running. This made her so mad, that she had other members down me, as the director placed me as the new chair person of that committee.

    After I left the V.A. due to my military disability and she was hired as the lead Administrator of our local clinic, she reported to the Disruptive committee that I would come in at least twice a month and become disruptive. I have been trying to fight this and asked them to provide me with any and all evidence that I had ever been disruptive. Their answer well the is no evidence that you have ever been disruptive. But it had been collobrated ?. I tried the V.F.W. Senators Bennets office and guess who responded to his inquiry, yes the very same person who I use to work with, that started the whole mess. She of course is not going to tell them that she did this in retalation against me.

    This is a very small community and she hired those that she felt would be loyal to her and she succeded. Ten years later I am still fighting to have this corrected. It has been an uphill battle. I called Mc Donalds office and spoke with his assistant, will get back to you. Never did, I sent him an E-Mail asking for help, no response. I wrote the O.I.G., they state they never received my request, even though I mailed it certified mail and the post office shows it delivered.

    In the I.G. report I sent them a letter from the Director at the Denver V.A., where she states Mr. ….. Records were never coded for disruptive Behavior Nor where his records ever Red Flagged and there was never an Investigation completed. The person that acussed me was able to sit on the Disruptive Committee concerning this matter. Another letter from the Chief of Staff at the Denver V.A. wrote, We do not even know the person you are talking about. ( The person who accused me and sat in on the committee who punished me).

    The Left hand does not know what the right hand is doing. It is Employees like that, that gives Veterans a bad rap. and why not, they can get away with it and just laugh. I had done a lot of research and the Disruptive Committee is the SS of the V.A. system.

    In the Directors words ” Any and all Disruptive Behavior must be reported and “Documented” in the veterans records. And they could not produce not even one written report in my case. That is because they do not exist and I have never been disruptive. In my letters are falling on deaft ears. If anyone should be mad it is me, as the V.A. with out one shread of evidence, Placed into my official Medical Records ” If the V.A. ever hears that you again become Disruptive, You Will be Arrested by Federal Authorities and Banished from V.A. care and this will be in effect with no closure (Open ended). So this means that I am at the mercy of a vindictive employee, where the V.A. gives her the Authority to punish me at will.

    I have told the V.A. that they have violated al of my civil and constitutional rights and requested a fair hearing with an impartial enity to resolve the matter, No Dice. If the V.A. or O.I.G. would do a complete investigation into this matter, they would have to find in my favior. But that means they have to admit that they did wrong and committed a crime. Rather Admit to the wrong, its easier to keep punishing me and hope one day I will become Disruptive. Not a chance, I am too smart to fall into that trap.

    The O.I.G. in Washington states they never received my paper work, so on the 1st of the month, I am going to make three (3) different copies and send them out with the highest requirement the post office has to ensure that they have to sign for the packet and will assure that they can use the same excuse.

    The Disruptive Committee is doing more harm to veterans than good and it has to be done away with and or thighter requirements to justify the Disruptive Behavior. Guide lines and if they are not met, Leave the veteran alone. I for one will keep fighting this injustice until they listen to me or I die. I refuse to let one person ruin my life and let my grandchildren do research on me through Ancistery.Com and find this and them be ashamed of me, thinking I had done something wrong, when it never happened in the 1st place.

    Any Suggestion on this matter !.

    • I was considered disruptive when I refused to have a liver biopsy performed without ANY anesthesia. I really think at times we are treated like animals. It went from bad to worse when I over heard a nurse sarcastically comment to another that I must have forgotten to take my Xanax that morning. There have been times when a few poorly misbehaved unprofessional so called professionals have brought out the worst in me.

    • very good question Frank ?. I wonder if anyone here knowes that answer. If anything is going to happen we must have an outlet the news I quess, to put out there the word that a rally call to all veterans to meet outside the white house and demand the u.s. government listens to our real concerns. The V.A. needs to stop hurting veterans by their unethical programs. Disruptive Committees, they do not even have in place what Disruptive Behavior shoud consist of. It a free for all. They require no proof and can attack the veteran at will. Dirty shame and our congress and v.a. higher ups just don’t care if the v.a. distroyes a persons life, that effects not only the veteran but their families also. Does anyone here have any pull and contact the news so veterans can rally in washington. Folks our civil and constitutional rights are being ripped right from under us. We veterans made an oath to this country to protect it from foriegn and dosmestic harm. We can do this in a peaceful way, but we must have numbers for real reform to occur.

  9. I suppose I am honored to sport the red flag on my VISTa record. I made the mistake of wishing to revert back to Dilaudid from Morphine for pain. My PCP informed me that would be a cold day in Hell reserved for those with sickle cell anemia or truly disabled. When told I would appeal her decision, I was queried ” Do I need to call security?” That was my last visit to utilize VA medical. I did it merely to keep the records up to speed on my last claim. As VA sees no need to go afield in search of evidence now that you (the Vet) are doing it for them via the DBQs (and abrogating the duty to assist you in the process), it behooves us to keep them abreast if we hope to prevail. Nothing VA does now surprises me.

  10. Ben, I’m a guest blogger on ASKNOD and posted about this as well. I have learned that the Washington journalist who broke the story attended the meeting. If she hadn’t, we probably wouldn’t know about this. I’ve requested the minutes/transcript/audio of the meeting from the VA but haven’t heard back yet.

    I’d like to hear more about the legal ramifications of this ruling so please keep us informed. Thanks, Kiedove
    http://asknod.wordpress.com/2014/10/24/faking-fear-of-veterans-to-remove-their-legal-right-to-claim-information/

  11. Thanks for posting this issue for your readers. The claims process is unduly long and treacherous, despite technological advances, and should rightly be admonished at every opportunity. Veterans that wish to review the C&P exam results are potentially harmed at every level, considering that some veterans can afford to engage legal counsel to represent them and have early access to the exam results. This, of course, begs the question, as to whether some veterans with legal representation enjoy a special advantage by the early access. Did any of your research address this question, or are you assuming they do? Isn’t this situation just one more reason to look closer at the claims process, itself, and offer a workaround? One workaround that comes to mind, is to adjust the policy of Veterans’ Pension programs to allow all veterans to sign in and out, just as our national Food Stamp policy of allowing the poor to sign in and out as necessary. It’s a simple fix, and allows all veterans to receive the support they have earned. For example, I live on a small VA Pension, while I work through the claims process. Why not make this option available to all veterans? As a veterans’ attorney, it would seem logical for you to champion such an option. Why don’t you?

  12. “Shiver Me Timbers!….Another disruptive veteran wanting his/her medical records? Bop him and Bag him immediately! They must be mentally insane for cry’in out loud! Quickly… let’s show ’em what us gas-bubbles are trained to do here at the VA! Where’s that take-down-the-vet manual they gave us all last week at our secret klan meeting? Let’s kick his ass good!”
    Great letter to “Bob” though. I’d like you to post his response for us to read.

  13. On October 23, 2014, Fox News did a major story with the VA whistleblower that first appeared on Fox on September 2, 2014, interviewed then by Neil Cavuto, and then on Oct. 23 by another major Fox reporter. The whistleblower stated that about 47,000 veterans died waiting for medical care which vastly exceeds earlier figures of about 25 with some reports that said up to 400 or so, and others saying as high as over 4,000 but nothing anywhere near 47,000 as reported yesterday on Fox. The same report yesterday on Fox News with the same whistleblower who went all the way to the White House only to be exposed by White House staff and his job greatly endangered and badly damaged position, also stated yesterday that over 800,000 VA medical claims have been basically tossed aside and were never processed. If you have a claim and it has gone nowhere for many months or even years then you now know where it is: in the VA’s gigantic circular file that is monitored and maintained by our do-nothing Congress, harmful White House, and the thieves at the VA running the show for their upper staff and countless thousands of corrupt VA employees, the whistleblower and others like him being the exception. The VA is hopelessly corrupt and is not going to be salvaged. Something will have to replace it or the VA’s services to veterans and the military that the VA is tied to will both fail to the point of total national collapse. It is just a matter of time. The graft and corruption and theft and organized crime of every felony there is at pandemic levels at the VA will have to answer sooner or later for what it has done. Don’t be surprised for a shake up a few days before the November elections then a drastic adjustment at the VA right before Christmas. McDonald is on his way out even if he doesn’t know it yet. He will be gone by Christmas, on to a very attractive retirement package which will make him very happy.

  14. I really sympathize with you wonderful veterans. My husband is a VN disabled veteran and since I took charge of his health care with the VA, they have to deal with ME. I tell ya guys, you need to send your wives after them. My husband gets great care from the VA because they know they can’t push me around. I stand up to them, already having done my homework on all his health problems and TELL them what he needs. Yes, it is in his medical records that his wife is extremely difficult to deal with. The good Doctors don’t have a problem with me because they understand I have been living with his health problems for many years and truthfully know more about his problems then they do.

    When he is in the hospital, I stay with him 24/7, question every pill they give him, question why if something is changed, not getting his other medicine he takes at home, etc, etc

    It might be my age but they are not going to intimidate me, and the ones who try, very quickly change their toon, and now they are afraid of me. You have to know every ones boss all the way up the ladder up to and including all the way to the top man in Washington, your senators and congressman and never forget to go to patient advocacy. Never be afraid to threaten to go up the ladder but be willing to call their bluffs. It CAN be done. You just need to send a bitchy wife after them who knows how to intimate them. JMHO….good luck guys.

    • Dear Crazy Wife,

      You are doing a great service, it is a shame that , this is necessary.
      I wonder if any one knows this is not just the VA.

      1000 people die every day from Preventable Medical Error, and thousands are injured. This Problem is being addressed in the United States Senate,
      The first hearing was held on July 17 2014. Bernie Sanders is the chair, of the sub committee, this is on line if you want to check it out.

      Medical Error Is The Third Largest Killer In America.

      No one should ever enter a medical facility Alone.
      Perhaps those of us that are blessed, with Strong Advocates, could share, their Advocates with the Vets that are alone.?

      Kind of an Adopt A Vet program??? Would be interesting to see if patient care got better for all veterans. If every Veteran presented themselves with a strong advocate, that did exactly what you are doing, patient care would improve and the cost of Medical care would go down.

      You are saving your husbands Life.

  15. The issue with VA;s being requested to do C and P exams is not as these folks say. The examiners are really not employees (unless they are on loan) of the VAMC or the VISN. These folks are part of the VBA. The Regional Offices stacks its deck with loaded questions to downplay or dismiss a veterans disability claim in an errant attempt to undermine the Examiners opinion. This is the inner workings of a non-adversarial system. The VAMC is not the problem here, It is the VBA. Its practices must change to make a better environment. I have continuously cautioned Vets who are going for C and P exams or any VAMC visit to be nice to these medical folks. Remember there are two completely different entities. The VAMC and the VBA. The claims issues lie with the VBA so dont take out your frustrations on the folks at the VAMC’s. If you do, You will get nowhere.

  16. Veteran seen by the VA AND a VA employee… this article is so untrue. The VA is built upon your local healthcare friends, neighbors, veterans and relatives, just like any other one… except lots more regulations.

  17. Bravo, Ben! You know, if the VA did its job and provided appropriate mental health care for ALL veterans and if they didn’t make the veterans disability pensions so unnecessarily difficult, they wouldn’t have to worry about disgruntled veterans, because there would be none.

  18. Not long ago the vA portrayed veterans as Oscar the Grouch; Now we are painted as psychos and a threat to vA employees.. It makes one question if there are more training episodes out there that we are not aware of, that paint Vets in a negative way.

    The vA should be training their employees to be service oriented, customer oriented, professional, ethical, honest, and respectful,

  19. This is not related to the C&P exams, but to the new Dr’s the VA is getting. I just moved to Indiana from Washington State and I was assigned a Dr. This “Dr.” was a new Dr. to the VA system and I have never in my 30+ yrs. with the VA have never had a Dr. like this one. She would put in my records in all capital letters that I “refused” something if I told her that I did not want a flu shot ( I never get them and I have not gotten the flu so far). She even put that I was REFUSING all vaccinations. I was only asked about the flu shot so how can she put that I REFUSED all vaccinations? She put me down as “defiant with medicine regimen” as she wanted to prescribe a medicine that I have a reaction to. and right below that she puts that I have a reaction to this medicine. Talk about a double standard. Anything I questioned, she would put in my record that I was REFUSING what she was suggesting or wanting me to try (I have tried these things before and if she would have looked at my VA notes from the Seattle VA she would have seen these in there. I had even copy and highlighted these and put them on a flash drive for her to see to help her find what I thought was important faster. She told me “I don’t have time for this” and when I would try to explain a problem I was having or explain something I got the same response. I left hallway through our appointment and told her “if you don’t have time for me and to understand me and my concerns, then we are done here” and left. I contacted the Patient advocate and told them of what had went on and they told me I could get a different Dr. I go see him on Tue. Nov 4 so we will see how that goes. My former Dr. put in my record that I drink more that the average person (or how ever that is stated) after she asked me if I drink. I do not drink alcohol in any way. I have not even had a social drink since 2002. I was really upset with that and e-mailed her as to how can she lie and put that in my record. My response was no response so if anyone else looks into my record and sees “that I drink above the limit” then that will become a question as to getting the correct treatment for my chronic pain meds that she took away from me because “I didn’t need them” and I have been on these for two years. I took the classes, signed the contract discussed it with the Dr’s in Seattle and we agreed to putting me on the meds (morphine) and she has determined that I only need Tylenol and a cream to put in my knees. They hurt so bad now that I can’t stand it. The cream she put me on has been prescribed, from Seattle VA, three times and now from her makes the fourth. IT DOES NTO WORK! When I came to Indiana, the first Dr. I saw had me sign a new contract, screened me, and prescribed the morphine. If he did this how can she take it away. This makes no sense to me at all. I know that if this Dr. does not take care of this and my mysterious iron deficiency anemia that has been going on for two year now, I will not stand for it. the iron problem is so bad I can barley walk 40 yards before I get exhausted and I am breathing hard. It has kept me from getting and keeping a job because I can’t last a day of work. I am really not liking the VA right now. I am tied of the bad-aid approach to my problem and not actually trying to diagnose what I have going on and what to do about it. I take 3 – 325mg iron pills a day and two weeks ago they gave me a gram of iron by IV and it is gone and I am back to not being able to get around.

  20. The object of the initial article seems to have gone astray! Let’s address that issue. First and foremost, the training for workplace violence is required by Public Law. Second, I have worked closely with Dr. Van Male and Dr. Vance, National Directors for the program. thier concern is for the VA employee, many of whom are Veterans. Both of these people work tirelessly to create a safe working environment for all VA employees. Remenber, I said this training is required by Public Law and Hospital accreditation agencies.
    All of the other issues are something one would expect of such a huge government agency. Many of us VA employees work hard to make the VA experience the best it can be. I am a VA paitent and so is my spouse and we hav eboth suffered some of the issues outlined in the many reaponses above. But, as a rational person I work through the system to get what we need AND what we Veterans deserve. I could fill these pages with stories of abuse of the system and would point out that the actions of many of our deserving veterans are what has created this mess to begin with. I have witnessed the veerbal abuse some of our “deserving Veterans” inflict upon our medical clerks and helath care providers. Mr. Krause’s article is reminisent of the 1960’s activists who also talked out of thier posteriors using partial truths to “raise awareness” of broken systems.
    Get real Mr. Krause! If your going to make quotes do it correctly and not out of context.
    We have a long way to go to make the VA the system that it should be and I for one am ashamed at the way Mr. Shenski was thrown to the political wolves and spoken of disgracfully. He was a champion of the Veteran and should be looked at as a hero.
    As the old adage goes, be part of the solution, not the problem.

  21. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2015/01/06/doctor-shot-presumed-shooter-found-dead-at-el-paso-va-clinic/

    There’s your data. As a ten-year navy veteran, I know that there is a sick underbelly of entitlement. This group files tens of thousands fraudulent claims and should be in federal prison. They take limited resources from deserving veterans. Where is your article about this problem?

    Why wouldn’t physicians want to feel safe at work? Why should anyone walk into a physician’s exam room without an appointment? How about the privacy of a veteran that might be in the exam room? Where is your article about this problem?

    • So in the civilian world this crap happens how often?
      In the civilian world Doctors and nurses are working for the vet not against him. They wont hide treatment notes, flag his file as a disruptive person, they wont change his meds based on erroneous information…

      1 vet shoots a doctor, just 1 out of how many vets?
      There are 21.8 million veterans and 1 case just 1 is your *proof* that this action needs to be taken?
      1/21,800,000 of a percent means that every vet is treated like a criminal or a terrorist.

      I dont want your world Randall Rhea.

    • yeah, basically its like this… the VA Dr. more likely than not lied, made up false allegations and probably greatly contributed to pushing that vet over the edge and i can guess never did a damn thing to help the vet. Vets aren’t stupid, they know when someone is working for them or against them. I bet that doctor brought it upon his own self. I know the vet suffered to commit such a horrendous action, and I for one have no doubt the VA help push him there and painted him into a corner. Well he got paint on him now and so does the VA. Its messy. I know how I have been treated and I have no doubt that vet was never helped. Give me access to his file and friends and family and I bet I can prove it.

  22. WHO ARE THE CRIMMALES VA ONE BIG BIG FEDERAL RICO CRIME RACKET RUN BY AFGE UNION CONTRACTS THATS A LEGAL FACT FROM AFGE UNION CONTRACTS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. I am a disabled veteran,and the VA outsourced my claim to a private company called VES, the doctor at VES did not even have one peice of my medical file. He did not read any of my notes or nothing. Was very rude to me, during the evaluation I told him I needed to get my left arm looked at, and he said, why is that track marks? Insinuating I was a drug addict. Really made me mad, was so unprofessional. I said hell no. And I as I was in mid sentence talking to him, he cut me off and said, I’m done typing, you can leave. Was a prick..needless to say I got a letter 30 days later that the VA had proposed a reduction in my percentage due to that assholes recommendation. All of my personal doctors at the va hospital all had to submit letters to my claim stating no, I still need the care and percentage otherwise that non va doctor would have messed up my livelihood. These private doctors are reducing veterans percentages across the country and the VA doesn’t have to take responsibilty for it, fingers can point to VES, works out well for the VA screwing over our veterans instead of just hiring more staff to process claims. These doctors who see a patient one time should not be making life altering financial decisions on a vet they see one time, it should be the veterans doctors they see on a regular basis. This system causes such a disservice to our veterans!

  24. I accidentally checked the wrong box regarding having a plan of suicide (how useless are these questions? If you answer yes, you are treated like a criminal) and ever since then I have had my own personal police escort at the VA. I got upset over that and I was threatened by the VA police with detention against my will. They are totally afraid of us and these “flags” ate just another tool to keep veterans from speaking out against the BS.

  25. Interesting article. According to sources, many of the VA staff are veterans. On the one hand there are patients frustrated by mistreatment some of which will act out in threating ways and on the other hand staff who are afraid of harm or termination. It is a veteran on veteran situation. According to sources the VA police are primarily there to protect staff. The solution is to find common ground. Try to understand that you are all veterans, the patient seeking help and the staff trying to help. If you feel uncontrollable emotion seep in, take a breath and come back another time, or if you’re staff, step away from the situation. Don’t corner someone. And please stop calling in and cussing the staff out or demanding someones job, you’re probably cussing a fellow vet who is trying to hold down a job and actually wants to help you.

  26. “1/21,800,000 of a percent means that every vet is treated like a criminal or a terrorist.”

    Exactly, same logic anti-gun idiots use to remove semi-auto weapons. If a couple idiots out of millions of people are doing the wrong thing, then it must be time to ban semi automatic weapons.

    If VA doctors are too scared to do their job, please do us all a favor and WORK SOMEWHERE ELSE. You are there to provide a service to veterans. Provide that service and be professional, supportive and courteous to veterans and there isn’t one vet on earth that would harm a hair on your head. Be contentious, combative, overbearing, controlling and harmful to a veterans care and you should be summarily court marshaled and treated like we treat other treasonous scum.

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