MMQB: Minneapolis VA At Center Of Medical Records Fraud

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Minneapolis VAMC

Benjamin KrauseTwo whistleblowers at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center were terminated after coming forward with outrageous stories of medical record fraud related to cancer treatments for sick veterans.

Most alarming were claims that agency managers required staff to falsify medical records that could be used against a harmed veteran in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Specifically, VA staff were told to write down that veterans declined treatment when the treatment option was never presented. This act is a violation of HIPAA, VA rules and is a clear ethics scandal.

Pay attention. Across the country, VA employees have come forward with details highlighting the depths of the frauds committed by VA employees to cook the books. In many instances, the fraud and ethics violations impact cancer detection and treatment. We intend to continue our coverage that includes a unique look at how frauds like these affect every day veterans like you.

Hi and welcome to another edition of Monday Morning Quarterback for Veterans. I am your host, Benjamin Krause, facilitator of the community surrounding DisabledVeterans.org and creator of the website. This is the leading resource of benefits information and news about the Department of Veterans Affairs.

We have a lot of videos for you to enjoy and get caught up to speed on stories related to veteran mistreatment and abuses. The first three are from investigations by KARE 11 news that chronicle the unfolding of medical record fraud that is likely going on across VA nationwide:

  • Two Minneapolis VA Whistleblowers Terminated
  • Minnesota Congressman Burnt By VA Fraud Cover-up
  • Corrupt Record Keeping, “They Lied”
  • Delayed Treatment Let Cancer Harm One Washington Veteran
  • Minneapolis VA Town Hall

[Note: Technical snafu – the first three video players below all immediately play when you arrive on this page – so I had to pull off the second two and link to them. Be sure to follow the links to see the second and third investigation clips.]

 

TWO MINNEAPOLIS VA WHISTLEBLOWERS TERMINATED

Last week, two former VA employees were highlighted by KARE 11 news for bravely coming forward to report frauds, crimes and ethics violations by VA leadership at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center. The community in Minnesota was shocked to learn of the scope of the scandal at one of the most highly regarded VA medical centers in the country.

In this video, VA Director Patrick Kelley gets caught on camera lying about the records fraud cover-up at his facility.

Most alarming is the reported practice of falsifying records to show veterans refused care when in fact veterans were not informed that care was even an option. This practice has far reaching implications in that the records could be used to block a veteran’s medical malpractice claim should the harm be the result of failure to treat where VA falsely claimed the failure was the fault of the veteran. Further, it is a violation of HIPAA and other laws against committing fraud.

Read More: https://www.kare11.com/story/news/investigations/2014/09/03/former-workers-claim-patient-records-falsified-at-minneapolis-va/15040447/

MINNESOTA CONGRESSMAN BURNT BY VA FRAUD COVER-UP

The Minneapolis VAMC is at the center of a patient records fraud even burned our own Congressman Tim Walz (D-MN). Congressman Walz now has egg on his face for falsely reassuring veterans and Minnesotans that problems related to the wait list did not extend to the federal VA medical center located in Minneapolis, MN.

[WATCH SECOND VIDEO CLIP HERE]

Congressman Walz expressed shock and outrage at both the scandal and the fact that he was misled by VA leadership at Minneapolis. Last May he stated, “There is no wait list to the best of anyone’s knowledge in the state of Minnesota.”

Now, he is singing a different tune, calling on VA OIG to investigate the Minneapolis VAMC immediately. He wrote VA leadership, “If these allegations prove true, I was not given the full story from VA officials during my visit to the facilities and during numerous interactions since. I am requesting verification that the allegations from the story are being fully investigated by the Inspector General.”

Read More:

https://www.kare11.com/story/news/investigations/2014/09/04/walz-calls-for-fed-probe-of-ex-va-workers-claims/15105751/

 

“THEY LIED”

Another veteran, Ernest Jones, did not receive appointment letters for colon cancer diagnostic treatments. His story provides a specific example where a veteran was not treated timely despite needing the appointment that was fraudulently canceled. VA whistleblowers indicated they lied intentionally to help VA leadership get good performance numbers.

[WATCH VIDEO CLIP 3]

This clip is particularly interesting because it is about a veteran and VA employee who was harmed by the fraud scheme.

Read More:

https://www.kare11.com/story/news/investigations/2014/09/03/former-workers-claim-patient-records-falsified-at-minneapolis-va/15040447/

 

FAILED CANCER DIAGNOSIS HARMS WASHINGTON VETERAN

Delays in treatment for Vietnam veteran Dan Carpenter negligently delayed a desperately needed MRI that was required to diagnose cancer that caused paralysis. His problems were well documented and resulted in a successful lawsuit against the agency.

While treated at the VA medical center in American Lake, Washington, Carpenter experienced numerous delays that now affect his ability to walk.

The veteran was routed through physical therapy and other pointless treatments until it became too late. A tumor in his spine caused paralysis that could have been avoided if VA had merely provided the MRI sooner rather than routing Carpenter through needless other treatments first.

This is a disgusting problem across many VA facilities where doctors needlessly delay health care where the delays cause permanent harm. There is obviously an internal scheme to defraud veterans from needed and timely health care across the board and we intend to good to the bottom of it.

Read More: https://www.king5.com/story/news/local/investigations/2014/09/05/va-veteran-hospital-delay-american-lake/15102051/

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

Minneapolis VA Town Hall

9/12/14 | 10:00AM-12:00PM
Location: Bishop Henry Whipple Federal Building, 1 Federal Drive, Fort Snelling, St. Paul, MN 55111

 

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19 Comments

  1. BEN! What have I clearly stated so many times? This issue I found all by myself only because as stated, “medical, expansive knowledge base, can’t mess with someone older, wiser, and CAN out smart you!” ( having children also helps, as they told their friends, eyes in the back of her head? Not our mom, they are all over her head!) now, that in jest maybe funny to children, but truly I stated, my records have lies! Allow me to enlighten you, “enlisting the assistance of Kenny Marchant and his so called VA helper,” I do not trust politicians, a reason for such. But, when I state “wrong treatment in an ER” then asking, gee does this guy think he is dealing with a fool? A litmus test given, and one failed! Oh yes, I am that bad. I have tried contacting the Dallas VA regarding these unprofessional fools, you can’t get them, then another number to call, which isn’t a VA number but a personal phone number? Excuse this phrase, WTF?
    Let me also enlighten you, the way the regional office does dirty work, the C&P done and a “professional” who lied, who changed my responses and I am on fire! Some guy called me last week, he was asking me questions, I stated, “what are you wanting to know, that the job they do is poorly done?” He stated that you said you were going to submit a complaint regarding this doctor, I stated, “clearly a code of ethics violations and if you cannot see that as an issue what would YOU DO IF IT WERE YOU?” There is actually a memo, stating might be PTSD but “check” for other issues. Seriously, give me a damn break, it’s a sick festering wound that has spread it’s nasty sick sepsis all over this country! It is damn scary to know that “others are getting the same B.S., with some obscure diagnosis, but worse, they often think they are truly crazy and get so depressed they commit suicide! This is medical, they are not honoring a code of an oath, and I take it damn serious! My own doctor of 19 years knows I will be brutally honest and I do not hold back! After 3 back surgeries, all these damn meds that I gained way too much weight, my cousin who I had not seen in years I showed her a picture, she couldn’t believe it was me! It took over three years to get that off, and it was because of limited mobility to do what I always did, exercise. But when the weight came off, goal attained, I told my doctor this, be ready-“thank all the damn Gods I no longer have big breast! I didn’t like it, I was always smaller and enjoyed that no bra needed feeling!” He laughed! He stated women need to hear me, because they come in seeking to get them to “improve a better self image.” Plastic America! I was the ONLY member of all the females with a small set, proudly I stated, yes, and yours will seek gravity first! Now think, if I am that transparent, again, think-I know how to pick up that detective mode and listen, I speak calmly, but know I do hear that speech go up a pitch, a bit faster, and can catch any fool so easy? Now, your suggestion for the FOIA is what made me seek out my records with all this stuff-WE HAVE A CANCER IN THIS COUNTRY AND I NO LONGER TRUST IT! Now, my concern is priority, I do not need the money by means of playing a fool for anyone, but you’ve pissed me off? Because I truly give a damn about people, think, I held the knowledge to know that at my hands could mean life or death! I do not jest about HIPAA and turning in a company either, this idiot thought it was a lie? Does she need to see the card I hold? We are talking two people and me, they dressed in black? ( damn, a funeral!) a shot can be deadly, a pill as well. A brain dead patient for transplant, the body is a delicate balance you’ve got to maintain for homeostasis, so “waiting” for a transplant team, do they need to see I am honored by being a part in the role so others could benefit? As far as another person “thanking me for my service, kiss my very vampire white ass!” This country is a total disgrace the way it has treated its veterans! Just FYI- because I know certain rules it was a person who had assisted me, gee, the very place you mentioned. They are taught and not lie as fast as others, why? Because they do not wish to risk serving time which think, “who often pays the price for bigger fish who don’t?” My back was injured in service, but I do not want there damn approval, I now shall seek other means-reporting to those who can hang up their professional cards-and I do mean it. What is that saying? “Hell has no fury like a woman ???” I do not need training wheels, trust me, they have no clue! As my friend who knows me quite well, “argue they say? They do not know you because a statement you say but argue? You not only eat the meat off the bone but the bone goes too!” Words are a weapon, trust that. I feel like a good old fashion flag burning, maybe the 1960’s had it right! But then again, I see way through what is being done? Sorry, they’re pitting people against people-and sadly, you buy into it! As the Aussies say, “Get Stuffed!”
    THESE POLITICIANS ARE ALL LYING BEN! GRAND STANDING TO SAY LET US HELP YOU, JUST LIKE RICK PERRY IS DOING AS HE WISHES TO TRY AGAIN! YES, JUST LIKE THE CANCER FUND RESEARCH? ASK HIM WHERE IS HIS MONEY? ( a discussion my doctor and I had about Perry, we both said it, “we must really look like the dumbest people come from Texas!” However, I reminded him, yes, but I am a west coaster on the intellectual coast! Both, we jest! Never mistake a person who has an IQ higher than these idiots! Some of us truly can be cunning, and we know how to “test a theory” and prove, right! My children all hated medical, chemistry isn’t their liking either. My youngest though did well in physics, and “taught the teacher and his class mates. There are many ways to achieve the same results, think outside your instructional book!” ( oh so like his mother, sarcasm a natural!) Trust me, don’t be shocked by what they do, I am not. My back is an example-and they are so way off course. Pain management? Nope! Do they teach doctors how to read and look at any information, or is it the VA requirement to hire those who cannot hold a job as one in the competitive world of consumers choice and pick good from bad? I truly think it must be a prerequisite! If you can’t survive in the civilian world and build a good and decent reputation, come to the VA, we promise you a secure job and good pay and if you kill veterans, then thank you! Seruously, my records I have all, my personal doctor and I will go over. My back is not a hockey puck that we are now on month 9. I found what maybe the issue, this is by my own investigating and knowledge-go figure. I might end up needing way more than just my fact finding mission-an implanted device maybe the cause of all my issues-so, “WHO IS ACTUALLY SMARTER THAN YOUR VA IDIOTS?” I do not hold back BEN! I advise you to tell every Veteran get a copy of your VA records, get the FOIA and ask for every damn call, post it note, message and don’t let them screw you! Trust me, they aren’t too smart-there truly is an APP for that to cure a call that comes through? Think what I just stated, it truly is amazing that I am a bit wise and “know how to use my wisdom!” Keep on their tails BEN! They may think I am possessed well maybe I am! It’s simple ethics and as stated, a sepsis that is coursing through this country just like “fracking” for natural gas and the waste of a natural resource, plenty in Minnesota, but unnatural earthquakes too? Cheney should be forced to drink the water, just as we remove the donor heart, money bought it! Sorry! Corruption, war, maybe those who believe the second coming too! One problem-he was Jewish? Yes, and wasn’t it Roman History to controll the masses? Okay-you keep at it. ME? I am pissed! And each person will pay, because I’ve seen those who’ve survived, MAMED, blinded, the list is endless-thank them right? George Carlin was spot on-damn I wish he were here today-but then he’d be hushed up. No longer do I wish to deal with the VA, nope! I wish to crucify them! But, I’d rather seek a “real doctor who has a real brain, and not these idiots who do pretend work!” Good work! But I wonder, see how those who have a whistle and what the reward is? DAMN SAD!!!

  2. Oh and Ben? If you need a person who can give you all you need to see how this is done, how I can outsmart the true fools, be prepared. My FOIA is massive, as stated, “you truly pissed me off and I am NO ONES FOOL OR COURT JESTER!” When stating, ask for every single transaction that goes on, I mean each and every single one. It is not funny when someone asks, “how do I find those who didn’t survive an MST event so I can honor them when I do my race?” People started listing names, and others stated where to look. How sad, a list of growing concerns by others who want to have a person honored while their “country” dishonored them! It’s not funny when a person truly has PTSD and was fighting his demons but volunteered for TEAM RUBICON, something I hoped to do on a local state level. Now, I was never a doctor, no. However my dreams ended to stay in, and become a physician assistant. Two events, then a narcissistic ex-husband and beater, made him such a catch. Well, thankfully he has remarried, twice, and I guess I take vows seriously, even though divorced. But he kept it “simple” the second on my daughters birthday, I truly was concerned, her and I are friends, now number three? Well he kept it simple too, married the day we were. He was part of the “problem” with my discharge code. Back and forth we went, “he would not except a sea assignment, mama’s boy!”
    But let me leave you with some perfect sayings how I am a species that doesn’t need a primordial soup make over; “NERD? I PREFER THE TERM INTELLECTUAL BADASS.” The other; “SARCASM, THE BODIES NATURAL DEFENSE AGAINST STUPIDITY.” It may seem like a person wishing to brag, no, it truly means this stuff needs national attention, I can be a prime example as to why, back it up, and burning down the HOUSE! I do not threaten, oh no, I can be so ever truly patient, to strike just at the “perfect time.” TRUST ME, I waited many years to do so to one person, and I REFUSE to call him anything but what he is, Mafia turned into a so called wonder change, but don’t believe it. He still makes his rules, I will not play. It gave me great pleasure to unload at just the right moment, so “dad” not, could read words he often spoke; “you made your bed now lay in it!” 32 years I waited, regret? HELL NO! Story goes deeper but it has nothing to do with the VA, however it does have to do with my morals, I had, my independence, lost it for awhile, but, got it back, and when a friend took me there, the screaming banshee encounter, bad vibes, wished to leave. Now, who had the “bright insight” to call chronic back pain an MST event? It was a guy on a stretcher, who was so tall his legs right below his knees hung off. Three stories down, interesting twists and turns they had, strange to see guys in my old recruit barracks. But being 5’6″ and roughly 118 pounds, I don’t think it would have mattered which end, but in retrospect the outranking Petty Officer could have used two recruits to get this giant into the ambulance. Now, is that a new form of MST? Can you see how labeling things wrong applies? Funny, as I stated, I can name doctors, nurses and others I worked with including that (not) new VA Hospital in Orlando, FL. Plank Owner, but truly adored that old WWII design with outside ramps, it gave you the freedom for fresh air and a view of the lake. Captain Zimble, humble man, but do not annoy him like my ex chose to do, it came around later in Hawaii, now Surgeon General of the Navy. I know it takes a weak minded man to beat on, try to smother with a pillow, yes, pregnant and all, but “fear” I lived with, and it was noticed by my very close friend Dene’ when she came. I set her up with one of the new guys, I guess my cooking was well noted, but he told her how it was, she stated, “that is not my best friend when she joined.” I was known for my independent ways, play with friends, play and learn from my elders I held respect for, and then read or music, and truly, hiking the local hills-Santa Anita Race Track, should give you a clue. Ben, let’s stop playing games, instead, let’s put the tentacles across this country, there is so much out there from patients/consumers they are and do deserve way better, or for the surviving families left behind. SCREW THESE GAMES, I HIGHLY DOUBT THAT MEMO AND “OBAMA” WITH A NEW PERSON IN CHARGE, “FLASHY WEST POINT GRADUATE?” He is Army-I respect one army person, most others, from enlisted to zeros not much. Damn huge Egos-gee, to back date as the oldest service? Besides, who always win the “ARMY-NAVY FOOTBALL GAMES? THE NAVY! (As one instructor I had, her son was a West Point Grad., he was also humble, but she was a great mom-however a bet-if the Navy wins you must wear that Go Army upside down! And she would get equal with my ribbons and medals and name tag as well. Why not put it out in some form or fashion, you know, like “A shingle of a new service to recruit others;” Uncle Sam Screwed You Over? WE WANT YOU!” I respect Katie Couric, smart, bright, and cancer a huge concern when she lost her husband. She can slam you down quick, but I think a “platform of everyone “united” and not “divided” we shall not fail. It struck me thinking of the political ramifications, because as stated, “a very small litmus test,” failed because the record was changed. Not noticeably so to anyone but myself who told this jackass leech republican, I am sure they truly all deserve a raise because they are the new “trend setters,” by getting ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ACHIEVED EXCEPT WHEN CONVENIENT AND TIME TO FLY HOME. I STILL REMEMBER SEEING NANCY PUKE ME OR CHOKE ME PLEASE AND HER EVER SO BRILLIANT RESPONSE! “SEE, WE CAN GET THINGS DONE AND MAKE PROGRESS THAT CAN BENEFIT EVERYONE.” OH YES NANCY SO TRUE! WHILE MANY OF US HAD TO DEAL WITH LIMITED AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLERS AND WAIT FOR FLIGHTS OR MISS CONNECTIONS, YOU ALL DECIDED THAT YOU COULD PLAY IN THE SAME SAND BOX, ESPECIALLY FOR SELF SERVING PURPOSES!
    1. Tentacles need to go out to every single damn Veteran we can find. I do know a few.
    2. Problems with VA employees, professionals are who we need to hand in their cards.
    3. We need insiders, willing to inform. Yes, let’s play spy games, but thou shall not break HIPAA OR PRIVACY ACT RULES? I know how to do this, but I wasn’t sleeping in class either!
    4. Tell each Veteran to get a copy of their VA Medical Records and if “lucky” military health records. Again, a game played, so damn odd my cousin tried to tell me, she isn’t military, but she isn’t stupid. If asked the reason? -you are entitled and really do not need a reason but maybe a vacation coming up, need them, there is no floating VA facilities, personal doctor you see on the outside, wishes to know what is transpiring, “Doctors need to be well informed.”
    5. Obviously you are no fool to be had, and we know that must have made POTUS extremely uncomfortable! GOOD JOB! Hell, can I asks for my gas, my wear and tear on my car, my private phone use, even driving to Florida and unorganized they were. Also the amount of money spent on signs, and yes elderly would come to my door for one, but my “Demon” ( a dog, very much aggressive when someone is too close!) I have written that snake, especially on a weekly basis stating you have bad juju in your VA Healthcare in Dallas! Trust me, I am a damn itch you can’t reach, and he must wonder, “what does she really know as a truth matched with education and civilian work? I was often a 1099 employee, back in the day when you could write so much off, nice then it was, but makes it hard when it looks as if your in the red? 🙂
    “THE MOMENTUM IS BUILDING, I SHALL EMAIL YOU A FEW THINGS TOO, THERE IS NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT BEN, FRESH AND KEEPING ALIVE EVERYWHERE KEEPS IT IN THE MINDS OF THE MANY WHO REALLY DO CARE. There are spouses with two jobs, and seriously rate “care taker status,” why is that not being done? ( because like everything else they do, what they do best is outright LIE! Transition status, let me get really real-I personally saw a much more potentially useful approach to transition from military to civilian life an acclimating into the new environment. This? Is what I had wished to do, oh I know I’d have to rattle cages, but FEAR I LACK! I do realize these are humans, and returning from war to home is hard, but harder yet when you have other issues, PTSD, TBI, MST, MISSING LIMBS ( a bush road with some, asked if he felt bad for these guys, typical reaction, no there fine with so I am too. I swear the traits of my ex I see in bush, maybe his wife is on some good pharmaceuticals! Paint he does, gee, I almost wet myself laughing when he described what colors he would mix for a purple tie, I thought, so he wants mud? I lived with my mom who did paint thank you. WAR IS NEVER GOOD ESPECIALLY UNDER FALSE PRETENSES, take note, a 3rd building collapsed that day, no plane hit it? That cross is Palin’s belief that God wanted us to get are enemies, well gee, why not the Star of David, Wiccan, Pagan, Agnostic, Muslim? I lost a fire fighting cousin, her words rub me wrong. Stop religious hate, don’t tell me your belief is the only belief to be true, seems to be a whole lot of hating going on!
    Seriously, time to truly hold them all accountable. I have another person who could give you a whopper-as they settled it quietly.
    NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT BEN! WHEN READY, WE NEED TO STRIKE AND TIME IT PERFECTLY! We are the causalities of wars whether peace time or not. Okay, obviously what I have found because I truly have a damn brain and can “READ” and COMPREHEND IT, ANALYZE IT, AND EVEN KNOWS WHAT MY BE MY BEST COURSE OF ACTION-WILL NOT INCLUDE ANY DAMN VA. Let me know. I am trying to guide others to this site. THEY JUST HAD TO BEEN DUMBER THAN I EVER THOUGHT POSSIBLE TO THINK “SURELY VETS HAVENT A CLUE.”
    “IF YOU CANNOT HANDLE THE HEAT, THEN DON’T TICKLE THE DRAGON!” I SHOULD HAVE TOLD THEM FLAG MY RECORD, THERE IS A BEAST, AND THIS BEAST WILL BURN FOR A VERY LONG TIME!!!
    NO MORE WAITING GAMES LIKE THIS ARE JUST BAD UNETHICAL NO STANDARDS AND ALLOWED TO GIVE THE WRONG TREATMENTS, THEN KILL OF A PATIENT WHO TRUSTED, NICE WORK BOTTOM FEEDERS!
    ( yes, an all nighter, my right leg is not happy. My medications are not winning, which makes me really angry when I read, can be smart enough to google it, but, also a way to earn CEU’s however I probably need not worry on that, if I can just sit, play my Cello, it may calm the beast a bit-but I highly doubt it at this point-others being harmed? DAMN STRAIGHT I DO GIVE A CARE! Geez, mid evil are these practices, why don’t we just bleed them to get rid of all the illness-SICK BASTARDS RUN THESE PLACES, THEY DAMN WELL KNOW!

  3. The v.a. will wright declined in the medical record if they ask you a question and say no. Do you need a flu shot, no I had one. Veteran delined flu shot, Ect. Declined is one of their faviorate words to use. I really like this site, if nothing else, I have a place to vent my frutration. It gives me hope that maybe something good may come out of this. Need to get th e-mail address to the highest level v.a. official and e-mail all this to him.

  4. The Washington one does not surprise me at all. This place should be shut down. It is so bad. I have been going there for ten years before I got so fed up with the lies and the not caring that I am no longer a part of that system. They have done nothing for me but make me worse. I now have many ulcers that when I was scoped two years ago (both ways and was clean), now I have a hiatus hernia (medium size), unexplained blood loss, iron deficiency anemia (for 2 yrs. now) and I can’t get them to do a thing about it. I can barely get around without running out of breath. My Dr’s have lied to my face, refused to do anything, the Patient Advocate will do nothing and my GI Dr. told me she could plainly see where blood was oozing into my small intestines and that she could see a mass from the camera that I swallowed yet she did not want to do anything. I had to beg, plead, and do this continually until she finally told me she would give me iron infusions (8 125Mg infusions over 8 weeks) in which I had to drive to Seattle (166 miles round trip). Fee services said no to have it done locally (thanks fee services). So I had to drive 2 to 3 hours depending on traffic each way. She had a double balloon endoscopy done at another hospital because they lacked the equipment to do the procedure. That is where they found the hiatus hernia with a few Cameron ulcers, and several other ulcers. My treatment for all of the above was “take to more omeprazole’s and we will scope you in eight weeks”. Then I developed H-pylori and was given antibiotics for that. No care or urgency for the mass that I can feel and give me a great deal of pain or for the blood oozing into my small intestines.
    When I asked for the CD for the camera thing I was repeatedly given excuses as to why I have not received it. And to this day I have not received it. I will try to get it thru my new VA and see what they say. I was seen on a Sat. for my intake at this VA. Why is this not done at more facilities if they need to do that. Or is it being done at some. The VA in the Puget Sound is such a worthless place that anyone going to it should get out while they are still in good health and not end up like the vet in this story or like me. Oh and now my former GI Dr. is retracting her stating I have a mass to now stating it was just the camera turning around in my intestines. BS, BS, I can feel something in there and could before the camera thing was done so don’t try and get out of it now. I am hopeful that my new Dr’s will take better care of me at my new VA. They seem to want to help and the atmosphere there is so much better. The people behind the desk actually look at you and are nice. They say nice things like “thank you” and “have a nice day”. WOW I’m not used to hearing that or seeing the faces of the people behind the desks at that place I was at.

  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PlO9yWPfRpc&autoplay=1
    Russell Strand-investigator on MST events. As stated, the mind protects the victim, it is a natural response, however, if you are 18 your cognitive reasoning skills are not developed until your twenties, and on trauma too much is never good. Think, at 18 do you truly believe death could be something that will happen to you? Or think about college days and that party on stage! Rape-one of the most unreported crimes-why? Because the “victim” can turn into the one that ends up degraded. That is one example. My PTSD event, ( this is where the regional office stated they would find the evidence, oh I had little faith. As I was told since the base was gone, I would need “high powered attorneys” to make them search from 1979 to 1980. Go figure) there is another link, I shall find it too.

  6. Thank you Mr. Krause for maintaining this website it is greatly appreciated. I am a victim of medical care received at the Minneapolis VAMC which made me disabled, so this article holds a special meaning for me. I am truly grateful.

    Sincerely
    Kirk Rolson

  7. From what I have been reading about the “town meetings” being held at various VA facilities accross the country as insituted by R. McDonald, hardly any of the veteran popuation shows up – maybe 3-4 veterans – to voice their frustration. The reason given is that nobody knows when and at what time they are being held. So they are mostly attended by the VA hospital staff and the veterans who work there. Mostly good things are said by them about how wonderfull their hospital or clinics are for veterans. “Officials” are starting to tell the hospitals they need to do a much better job getting the word out somehow to the veterans in the vicinity to be able to go to these town meetings. I think veterans are so thouroughly sick of the BS that they consider this a waste of time. So it looks like the concept of “town meetings” is not providing meaningful improvements to anything, I hate to say.
    I have started to get a bill from a doctor I used thru fee-based VA for something I had done back in Feb. 2013, over a year and a half ago. The private doctor was never paid by the VA, and I am left holding the bill. My phone conversations to the VA facility to straighten this out and to find out why this was denied turned out to be without an answer to me after I had been trying to resolve this now for 3-4 months. After talking to someone in the dept who I know and is working with me to resolve this with the VA doctor there who got this approved for me back in March 2012, had just today explained to me (whispering) the doctor was “afraid” he “would get in trouble” for requesting the VA spend the little money it would take to make payment and settle this settle this. Instead, they are procrastinating and they want me to forward them the bill I had been recieving.
    I doubt anything will be done by them and soon I will be sent into collections by the private doctors office for non payment of the bill by the VA, and for mee holding off as I was told to do by the fee-based idiots who work there.
    So, the beat goes on with the way the VA operates in total dysfunction. I guess they still don’t understand they have to change their ways. Meanwhile, the doctor I went to refuses to ever take me as a patient ever again, especially with VA fee-base crapolla, I was told today when I called them. The doctors office told me thay hate dealing with the VA, will never deal with them again, that they are as dumb as hell, and caused very bad trust between the VA and them. The VA does not understand how to work with outside doctors and doesn’t care if they ever get paid. I guess this shows how nothing is really being done thus far to make anyone trust the VA, even with all the exposure publically since April. Wonder if McDonald and the others realize this?

    • bd, I have went through the same VA crap you are going through. The only thing I can think of, and this is my opinion and only my opinion, is the following.
      Do you have your medical records? I mean the actual paper ones not the ones from the site that leave certain things out of it. If not then get your complete medical records from the Release of Information (ROI) Office in your VA Medical Center. Look for that authorization from Fee Services and then see how long it is good for. Some have a certain time limit on using the approved process. If you find it and you were within the time frame then you bring that up to fee services (if you are not within the time limit then you are stuck for the bill unless you do the last part I will put down) and tell them that you were approved on date XX and the approval was good until date XX. Then you tell them when the procedure was done. That should clear up anything they are trying to stick you with. Send the Dr. a copy of those papers and write (or tell him if you hand deliver them) to show that the VA approved this and you were within the approval date. Tell your Dr. that you are filing a statement in support of your claim against the VA (it goes to your Med Center) which is VA form 21-4138) and you can got that in a fillable form that you can fill out on your computer and save it Just in case they did not receive it. I had to do this and it got completely cleared up in about a month.
      If you do not fall within the time limit or cannot find the fee services approval letter (they usually mail you a letter) then if your bill is too much for you to be able to pay then another choice you can do and I don’t like to use it but if the medical place has a charitable office you can see if they can waive the whole bill. I have had to do that and they write it off. I don’t like to because I know that means that they have to get that money from somewhere to make up for it. But as a last resort you might be able to do that. I had a bill for over $60,000 from braking my ankle and I was unemployed because of breaking my ankle. It took so long for it to heal that this was my only way to settle the bill. I still think about it today and I wish there would have been another way to pay it (LIKE VA HELP) but there was not. I am still not able to go to work because of the VA and the “GREAT HEALTHCARE” they have given me but I am trying to get that fixed so I can.
      Other than those two ways I don’t know of anything else to do. And because of the time factor (the VA is so good at paying for things a year or more later) you may not have any other options. If anyone else on here knows of anything please help your fellow vet out and give him some ideas.
      I hope this helps and always get and keep your medical records updated. I get mine every other month or so depending on how often I have went to the Med Center. They will print them for free (the first copy and not for repeats of records you have gotten from them before) so it is a very good thing to get and read every page of it. You might be surprised at some of the things they put in there. If you find any untruths (that is what we will call them AKA lies) then you can ask you Dr. to correct them. They cannot go back and actually correct that entry but can make an addendum to that to correct it. If they will not then you have the right to correct them yourself. Type a letter explaining the wrong and what it should really be. Give it to the ROI and ask them to put that into your medical records.
      I hope this has helped and as I stated before this is only my opinion and no more than that.
      Please accept my apology if I have went over things you may already know. I wanted to be clear on how to do this so I was trying to be as complete as I could be. You may know about the above I am just trying to help.

      • Thank you figure8fan for your reply from your experience. It is always best to hear how others have handled similar situations, and I do appreciate you taking the time to write a reply. My particular situation involves VA dental care and have the date the procedure was done, but the date the approval was good until was not specified. It was left open-ended.
        I feel the thing was denied because I went back for a treatment at the beginning of the calandar year. I did ask the people at VA dental if that made a differnce, the person went and asked someone about it, and she said “no, you can still use this – it’s still good -it’s still valid”.
        So I got the last treatment in Feb 2013, and all this time rolled by with me thinking it was payed for and settled – until a few months ago when I found out it wasn’t ever paid. I called up fee based jackasses right away and they wrote up all the info I gave them and forwarded it to the head of the dental dept – who gives all these matters to this old retired dentist who comes in and supposed to take care of all the many matters like this – and was told by my hygienist that they have MANY problems like this all the time from other veternas who were also fee-based out through that dental dept.
        Meantime, when I spoke to the private doctors office about the bills they were sending me (to make sure they know I was not ignoring them) the lady at the dentist practice told me they were fed up with VA games and this happens with mostly all the other vets they do work for. She said they were dumb___, etc. The only reason they accept fee-base from the VA is because the specialty dentist there is a Vietnam veteran and he trys to be nice to vets. She goes on to tell me her husband is a retired Air Force person and he always has nothing but bad things to say about the VA. She said she already wrote this off last month, and it won’t go into collections, but they will never accept me at their practice again. I said I will still try to get the VA to pay, as I was in the process of doing, but I wish I would have been notified of this a year ago so I could have acted on this in a better time frame, or would make an offer to pay it myself. The VA has to be the worst, the stupidest, the most dysfunctional, the most unbelieveable beast that ever existed. I don’t know what the answer is to make improvements in day- to- day behavior with them.

      • Ahh, the wonderful world of VA Dentistry. You might as well pull your own tooth with a pair of pliars. It is a lot less painful. The VA should pay and you are right to go after these crooks to pay only if the private dentist told you to come back as a result of the previous work done. if he needed to do something directly related to the previous work , check something directly related to the previous work, make sure it was right directly related to the previous work after a specified time then yes the VA should pay. I have had this kind of thing as well and the dentist told me that he needed to check that things were doing what he was wanting and if not then I would have to get another approval to get it corrected. If you can get something from the dentist stating that you needed (almost a requirement) to return in x amount of time directly related to the previous work, and you did so then you can present that to fee services and they may still not want to pay. Be firm and keep with the fact that you were technically still in the dentists’ care and this was a follow-up appointment directly related to the previous work for the approved dental work. Make sure that a follow-up was not put in the fee services approval as not being covered. If it is not in there then you should have a very good chance of getting this paid. DO NOT let fee services know this has been written-off or they will never pay it Send them a copy of the bill you have or get the dentist to make a newer copy with a more current date on it (so they will think they are still after you) and hopefully they will pay it I agree that the dentist should not have to eat this. He is getting paid less by the VA so he should be able to recoup what he can get. Also be persistent, call them once a week to find out the status of this bill. That sometimes gets them to pay it so they no longer have to hear from you. I try and make them pay for whatever they have approved and not let them get out of anything they have agreed to pay. They (the VA and fee services) have decided they can do what they want and I am not one to agree with them on this. Do the above and hopefully it will get paid. The fee services people have a very good record of not paying until they have to. I have had a couple of Dr’s put my bills into collections and it is no fun and has made me not like fee services so anytime I can get back at them I will. They want to play that game, I know how to play it as well. Most of the time I win and they pay. I have gotten letters from a hospital that stated this part or that part has been paid by fee services and I received the treatment over a year ago from that hospital. But they got paid and that was the main thing I was after. Hope this helps and keep after them. If fee services calls you and tells you that the dentist has wrote it off, tell them you did not know that and they will then not pay and you will be out of luck. Have you dentist send the bill in again to fee services after you contact them with the above so they can see it and it will be fresh in their mind and it might get paid sooner. Experience has taught me some of how to treat the fee services people and another thing, be as nice as you can to them. Being nice will go a lot further than being angry. If they don’t pay then be angry, you have nothing to lose then. Contact the Patient Advocate and they might, yeah might (like a 0 – 10% chance they will)help you to get this paid. Good luck and let me know if it gets done. And I will put on here again that this is only my opinion and only my opinion and should not be taken as a “how to” for anything. I am just trying to help my fellow vet out as the rest of you should. We are one and should stick by each others side for us and not them (The VA and their people).

      • I will let you know what happens – Actually my hygienist there is the on who told me that the dentist there wanted a copy of my most recent bill. She has it and will give it to him this week. So I don’t know what action they will take yet. Definitely I will NOT tell them that this was already written off – I told the private practicioner I’m not going to tell them and I will just have to wait a few days before talking to the hygienist who is acting as my conduit to the VA dentist handling this (and other) case. These annoying problems we all have will never work its way up to McDonald’s understanding on just how much it sucks at the VA – or how the VA causes bad impressions on outside doctors who learn to hate them too.How the f–k is he going to change the attitude?

    • Town hall meetings held at the v.a. are for employees, they do not want a lot of veterans there, the less the better. They can shut out a few. If the veteran speaks out, they will be told sorry, this is not the right foarm for these type of complaints. If you presist you will be asked to leave or maybe arrested, as disturbing the peace at a federal facility.

  8. I am the commander of a local chapter of the DAV and being treated by the local VA in Lexington for a variety of ailments thanks to Agent Orange. This chapter meets monthly and obviously has a number of other veterans being treated at the VA. Only one (1) vet received notification of the upcoming “town-hall” meetings. So much for getting veterans to attend these VA rallies.

  9. We have a faux “President in the White House, a usurper and a fraud. Obama is the ringleader in a RICO ‘administration”. “A dead fish rots from the head down”

  10. Ben et. al, i’ve had some of that done over the years. “Most alarming is the reported practice of falsifying records to show veterans refused care when in fact veterans were not informed that care was even an option.” Also, never granted an MRI within ~19yrs only CTs which allowed VA to minimize/ration any diagnosis. First civilian MRI showed the neuro disease which explained many of my symptom complaints. See how naive i was all those years? I believed them. They never would look at my mil med records either or dismissed them which had the evidence there. they finally SC’d me but many VA neuro’s are a real piece of work. wish i didn’t ever have to see them again. requested fee basis for civ neuro. told ok, but its never come to pass.

    that’s just one nutshell short story, and most vets i know that have much experience with VA knows the story. some worse, some more horrible. nevertheless, the same type stories.

    and congress wants to create more veterans. hope they have great med insurance and legal help when they return.

    no wonder they fire immediately any whistle blowers. VA knows how its culture is.

    • Don’t you remember, they fired the one on that day and the other on the next day and it was purely coincidental. Nothing to do with being a whistleblower. BS, BS, BS. They can say what they want to but what they are trying to do is let the VA employees know that if you tell on us, we will fire you. I hope and pray that some attorney will take this case and try to prove otherwise because the whole U.S.A. knows that the VA is lying
      I know your pain because I am one of those other vets that the VA has damaged and now I am finding out just how much they have damaged me. It seems that the simplest thing for the VA to do to find out what is wrong with us they do not do. I wonder why. Because it would cost them money and if they deny and say that this was never shown or found while in their care they may get out of being sued. I think we all should sue them for anything we believe that they have done to us. How would that look in the news. “Hundreds of thousands of vets sue the VA for improper treatment” I think that most of us could prove some type of treatment that was not needed or that should have been done and was not. They all may not be up to the suing level but it would bring attention to how we are being treated and it might help to get us treated better. we need veteran anonymous whistleblowers that can prove the wrongs and not be “black balled” by the VA. This is so simple, all we want is to be taken care of when we are ill or have a disease. Diagnose us correctly, accurately, timely, and fix it. If they do that then we should not have any complaints (yes there still will be a few) on this.

      And if there is anyone in the Minneapolis area that can hire these two women please do so. They should not be punished because they did the right thing. If I had a business and was in the area, I would hire them even if I had nothing to do with the medical field. I would do it out of morals. It would be the right thing to do. Even if I did not need anyone they would still be offered a job until they can get back to what they were trained to do and I would let no other employees go even if it meant that I had to take a loss on MY bottom line.

  11. There should not be any incentive to falsify patient care, or timely appointment, to correct this disgrace, simply do not give bonuses to any VA employees. The government job they have is more than enough of a bonus.

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