TODAY: Congress To Hold Hearing On VA TBI Exam Failures

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Those interested in VA TBI exam failures over the past decade should tune in this morning for the House Committee on Veterans Affairs hearing on the subject.

Since 2008, VA has held a policy that requires initial TBI examinations be performed by a specialist. Those specialists are: neurologists, psychiatrists, physiatrists, or neurosurgeons. VA failed to follow its own protocol when it failed to use those same specialists to conduct the exams for over 24,000 veterans.

Congress plans to hold a hearing starting at 10 AM EST today. You should be able to follow the link below or tune in on CSPAN or Congress.gov.

WATCH IT: https://www.congress.gov/committees/video/house-veterans-affairs/hsvr00

UPDATE, 10am: The VA TBI Exam Hearing Is Posted Below

Just a quick note, you can skip ahead to minute 30 to start the hearing.

MY TAKE ON VA TBI EXAM HEARING

My expectations for the hearing are low for four reasons. First, we are heading into a recess when most lawmakers are already shifting gears to be reelected.

Second, the House Committee has invited all the wrong people. Right after the scandal broke last year, former head of the Office of Disability and Medical Assessment resigned/retired, Dr. Gerald Cross. This is the doctor we want to talk to.

Instead, now that VA has shuffled around the deck chairs, we will get a bunch of newbies who were not around during the ramp up leading to the scandal.

Third, the House Committee still has no idea what the four specialties apparently are. Instead of listing the correct four, they included “psychologists” in the mix. I’m not sure how they got that important factor confused, but they did.

Fourth, the House Committee failed to invite anyone with an opposing view to provide testimony to the committee about the TBI scandal. The reporter who broke the scandal, AJ Lagoe, was not invited. I was not invited despite being the attorney who uncovered the scandal and passed it on to Lagoe.

At least on the surface, it does not look like Congress is terribly concerned with getting to the bottom of this one given the lack of diversity in the testimony proposed.

RELATED: VA TBI Scandal Exposed In TV Special

Here is the House Committee press release:

HVAC to Review VA Failures in TBI Examinations and Disability Claims

WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, July 13, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. in room 334 of the Cannon House Office Building, the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs will hold an oversight hearing on the Department of Veterans Affairs’ failure to provide adequate examinations for traumatic brain injuries (TBI).

Since 2008, Veterans Benefits Administration policy has required that initial TBI disability examinations be conducted by one of four specialists: neurologists, psychiatrists, psychologists or neurosurgeons. However, an April 2016 VA review of disability examinations for TBI claims revealed over 24,000 veterans nationwide received a TBI examination performed by an unqualified examiner.

Due to the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, a growing number of veterans are being diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries. The Department of Defense and the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center estimate that brain injuries account for 22 percent of combat wounds to U.S. service members who have served in Afghanistan and Iraq. By comparison, brain injuries accounted for 12 percent of combat wounds among Vietnam veterans.

The purpose of this hearing is to examine the reasons VA failed to provide adequate TBI examinations to more than 24,000 veterans and the steps VA is taking to ensure veterans have the opportunity to request a readjudication of their TBI claim.

The following event is open to the press:

WHO: Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs

WHAT: “TBI Claims: VA’s Failure to Provide Adequate Examinations

WHEN: 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, July 13, 2016

WHERE: 334 Cannon House Office Building and streaming at veterans.house.gov

WITNESS LIST

David R. McLenachen
Deputy Under Secretary for Disability Assistance
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Accompanied by:

Mary Glenn
Acting Deputy Director, Operations, Compensation Services
Veterans Benefits Administration
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Patricia Murray
Chief Officer, Office of Disability and Medical Assessment
Veterans Health Administration
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

###

Reuben Castro Acosta
VA DEATHCARE ONE BIG BIG FEDRAL RICO CRIME RACKET RUN BUY @ FOR AFGE UNION CONTRACTS VETS YO ARE SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO SCREWED BY VA DEATHCARE FROM HELL !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Reuben Castro Acosta

bozo the clown for sec of va dc hq cant be worse than fake ranger bobo mcduck !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

namnibor
Here’s yet another thing that requires to be changed with the VA: VA Employees should NOT be able to use a resignation/retiring to be exempted from that thing called accountability. We see this over and over with the VA. Employees at all levels view a “sudden retirement” as a “get out of jail card” and the VA coddles this behavior. Unfortunately, members of congress are more than likely way more concerned about their golf country club 18 holes reservations and… Read more »
Cantigny
Cantigny
i found some appointments in my VA med records statings i had failed to show for appointments. though in reality the VA had rescheduled them but the med records didn’t reflect that. they made it out like i had “failed” to show. so i sent that off to Congression VA Committees. got back the typical thank-you template letter. but i did see where that doctor had “retired”. of course that dept didn’t notify me nor let me know so i… Read more »
Cantigny
Cantigny
>>The purpose of this hearing is to examine the reasons VA failed to provide adequate TBI examinations to more than 24,000 veterans and the steps VA is taking to ensure veterans have the opportunity to request a readjudication of their TBI claim. this hearing will walk away with about as much useful information as A.G. Lynch spewed before the House Judiciary Committee recently. basically useless information designed to stall and divert. so this Congressional committee will actually see to it… Read more »
redturtle984
redturtle984
Let’s be clear. When Congress must force by subpeona VHA officials to testify, when VA Union leadership is openly hostile to any reform of the DBC process, accountability for lawbreakers, or actual monotoring and supervising of their brotherhood, then Congressional idiots who kiss babies asses to wear a cool comgress pin can kiss all the ass they want and it means didly. Congress can demand reform. VA union says no. President demands accountabilty. AFGA says “I will kick (The Secratary… Read more »
Crazy elf
Crazy elf
Well, it looks like another VA employee got the chance to retire. Before being held accountable. How many so far in the past two or three years, I’ve lost count! I’m going to wait and see just how bad the committee screws this up. Can anyone say anything this committee has accomplished for veterans – EVER! When did they, over the past 30 years, ever do anything FOR vets? I agree with namnibor. They didn’t invite Ben or A.J. Lago… Read more »
redturtle984
redturtle984
The first step in nuetering the AFGE is to change the leadership structure which a President can do. Specifically, every medical facility has a Chief Of Staff. This person must be replaced with a person hired and paid by Justice Department amd answerable directly to, and only to Justice. Still a doctor, but a doctor that must pass a high school equivalency test on Civil Rights. Same with Director but hired, paid, and answerable to the Committee On Veterans Affairs.… Read more »
redturtle984
redturtle984

…and “career hold” means retirement too.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@redturtle984

I would add, while on suspension – NO FREAKING PAY!

Ralph D Carmona Sr
Ralph D Carmona Sr

Justice Dept. They can’t and won’t find their own asses with both hands! Abolish the VHA and at the very least send them home. Lets see how they act when they have to WORK for a living. And folks, I have the solution for NLM. We used to call “em M60s.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Here’s something y’all need to be aware of;

The many Social Medias are spreading the word to have “..massive demonstrations nationwide starting this Friday, 15 July 2016!”
BLM, (Black Lives Matters), and the (New) Black Panthers are the two major groups behind this.

Remember “Hill Street Blues”, and what the Sargent would say, “Be careful out there!”
I believe it’s going to get rougher!

redturtle984
redturtle984
Rougher is really a relative thing my friend. I am not afraid of words of others. About a year and a half ago I lay on some pristine wet pavement late late at night all by myself in the rain. It was quiet except for the gentle sound of the McKenzie River that the road was beside. I pondered my next step in life as I gazed at my Harley Deluxe also laying quietly about 50 feet down the road… Read more »
namnibor
Specifically: “”Those Groups”” have officially called to ARMS and for all those to land upon the Republican Conv. in Cleveland…these “groups” have become officially HOME Terror Groups and should be treated as such. If you read many comments below news stories of what police across the USA are going through with outright lawlessness and civil disobedience (as if it ever stopped, only escalated), those comments from members of “those groups” are such that we folks, are not far from the… Read more »
Crazy elf
Crazy elf
@namnibor and redturtle984 Redturtle, I’m not “afraid of words” either. Yet, this is not what BLM and the Black Panthers are doing or saying. They are calling for outright war against anyone who stands in their way, for what they deem, or demand, is their rights! Here’s just two examples, (articles), which explain it in detail; 1.) From, “Dave Hodges – The Common Sense Show” “37 Separate Acts of Potential Terrorism Are Planned for This Friday” It gives the name… Read more »
redturtle984
redturtle984
I do not doubt that a call for violence has gone out nor do I doubt that some will seize the moment to take action. What I believe is that the vast majority of those calling for anarchy are good at flapping their lips but not so good at actually coordinating anything at all. I further know that the VAST majority of those willing to actually perpetrate violence are cowards and will only do so if they are certain they… Read more »
sheila
sheila

Is too late for us . My son in law committed suicide last week due to his injuries. He was deployed 4 times to Iraq. He was diagnosed with TBI and PTSD

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@sheila
I’m not an attorney, nor do I profess any knowledge of an attorney.
Yet, if that had happened to me, my wife would be on the phone until she found an attorney who would hold VA accountable!

Sheila
Sheila

I all his physical the VA Doctors saying he was able to work, have of his brain was dead. He had seizures like once a day. They denied and denied him, he was like 70 porcent

Lem
Lem
There was no mistake in getting “psychologists” in the mix. The neurobehavioral psychologist is supposed to test a TBI victim over 4 weeks at different times of the day and while the victim is working if employable at all according to the regs. (at least in 1985 when I had a work up done properly and my diagnosis of a left frontal and right occipital lobe damage was diagnosed). These psychologist are a very specialized group and there are far… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
Political Theater. A show put on by Congress to make it look to constituents like something is being done. Unless it has been changed, I thought a veteran had a right to be examined by a specialist during a C&P exam. An ortho doc for bones, podiatrist for feet, audiologist for hearing etc., rather than a general practioner for everything. As you point out Ben, they invited the wrong people, which means they don’t really care about the answers they… Read more »
Craig Files

Assuming all veterans share the same political views is a mistake. It makes me wonder if this website wants to help veterans at all. Making money from it is called pandering and disappoints of this website. Anyone intelligent or educated out there knows I m right. YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO RUN OFF ANYONE.

Dionne
Dionne
After reading several cases, I am not sure if an avenue toward a solution has been created …. the commonality here is that no one is receiving the benefits from the VA – Vocational Rehab/Employment. Most importantly, just like a class action law suit….that’s what needs to happen. There’s too much information here to ignore when millions of dollars are being stolen from us, not to mention that timing is the other factor….. so I’d like to hear some feedback.
Lem
Lem

There have been class action law suites: Bray V Brown; Bray V Shinseki and many more. The CAVC and the CAFC are on the payroll of the military industrial complex. Read the decisions and you realize the complainants’ filings were ignored in the decisions and that the decisions don’t make since if the filings of the complainants are considered.

wpDiscuz