House Committee Exposes Death Report Manipulation

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House Committee

Benjamin KrauseVeterans Affairs House Committee head Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL) hammered VA OIG acting head Richard Griffin over apparent manipulations in its final report about Phoenix VA deaths. This hearing is in response to reports that VA manipulated the language of the final VA OIG report for political reasons.

In this clip, Rep. Miller the Richard Griffin exchange barbs over semantics related to VA Central Office’s manipulation of the final language of the report that put the interests of VA ahead of veterans killed and harmed in the incident.

According to Rep. Miller, the number of potential deaths linked to the wait list was 83, but VA OIG somehow did not deem that increase important enough to include in the report. Of course, when media outlets picked up the misleading and manipulated language, it concluded the reported killings of veterans at Phoenix VA was not as serious as claimed. Thus the newly exposed manipulation undermined the significance of the scandal.

However, the VA OIG report manipulators did take time to throw VA whistleblower Sam Foote under the bus for refusing to identify the 40 patients he believed were killed by VA doctors. Foote’s justification for not cooperating was due to potential violations of doctor patient confidentiality that could result in him losing his own license to practice medicine.

Following the hearing, Rep. Miller stated,

“The confirmation from IG officials today that delays in VA medical care contributed to the deaths of Phoenix-area veterans and IG officials’ admission that they couldn’t rule out the possibility that delays caused deaths changes the entire bottom line of the IG’s Phoenix report. Absent these qualifying statements, the OIG’s previous assertions that it could not ‘conclusively assert’ that delays caused deaths are completely misleading. It’s absolutely inexplicable and outrageous that the IG’s Phoenix report failed to clearly make these distinctions. While I am pleased IG officials finally cleared up these glaring inconsistencies, I regret that they only did so several weeks after the release of the Phoenix report and after hours of intense questioning. Getting the whole story out of inspectors general should not be this difficult.”

This is to serve as a prelude to our deeper look into the hearing on Monday now that a new VA whistleblower has come forward from within VA OIG to expose agency manipulations.

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10 Comments

  1. As a layman, this tells me that even the I.G’S office can not be trusted to provide an honest response. I sent a packet to Washington back in may never received anything back that they received it. Local rep has been intouch with the oig office and they have not received anything back, that they received it. Rep wanted to know if they the oig can act on the cover letter I gave the rep and I advised her, if the oig used just the cover sheet to complete an investigation, they would not have all the evidence that I had gathered over the last 10 years to prove my case. Rep stated I will be in contact with the oig office today and see whats going on, if they have found the folder I sent about 50 pages. Sent certified mail and the certificate was never returned from the oig office, but the u.s. mail online showes it was delivered.

    • Until veterans get off their ass with a March on Washington like the Civil Rights Movement, nothing is going to change at the VA for veterans! “Veterans Life Matters”

      • You are very right Jeanette and that is just what it is a civil right action. This should occur on veterans day where all citizens can join the veterans and support us by shear volume. I know many Americans would be appauled by the v.a.’s actions and would stand tall with us. I have no clue who could spear head this. Need someone with knowledge on how to organize such a movement. If things do not change soon, this could effect the moral of our fighting men and women. They are not dumb and they can see what is going on with us veterans and know they one day will be veterans. Someone has to standup for us and it should be our Senators and Congressmen insuring that the veterans are treated with respect and diginity. That’s not to much to ask for. Is it. Veterans love this country or they would not be veterans.

  2. anytime you put someone under an immediate deadline that can’t be met with the resources available, you are not going to get a complete and precise result. Expect more vaiance to come…

  3. I could be wrong but didn’t the VA itself investigate this atrocity and decide that 0 veterans had died due to waiting/not getting appointments on the list? Forgive me but isn’t this like having the fox watch the hen house and say that nothing is happening there? Enough of Congress and the VA! I believe a completely non biased litigator should research this problem and come up with a fix for this situation! I have been retired for over 24 years and have been to numerous VA hospitals since then and the quality of care is absolutely unbelievable from each one!

    • Hello, I for one have watched Mr. Miller in action, dealing with the v.a. higher ups and I was very proud of the way he did not take any gump from them and gave it to them with both barrels ( not a real gun) matter of speaking. Call him and let him know you are with him and support him. I maybe wrong but he seems to really care what is happening to us veterans.

      • Miller is a big part of the whole VA coverup. He’s holding hearings after hearings just to placate us veterans but he has done virtually NOTHING! His committee has been sitting on hard evidence of fraud, waste, and abuse and criminal coverup committed by high ranking officers of the VA and VA OIG, submitted to his committee in 2011. There will never be any reform in VA as long as we have politicians like Miller overseeing this criminal enterprise.

      • If this is true, then who can we count on !, Tell me please who. So we should all give up hope, that someone in these united states that is unable or unwilling to stand up for us. If everyone is against the veteran and their is no glimmer of hope, lets just quit. Perfect just what the doctor ordered. I fill anyone who stands up in front of a nation and fights for someones rights, should get a some respect and if what you are saying is true then shame on him and in the end it will come back to haunt him and I for one with no voice, can appreachiate someone, anyone who tries. If we jump on everyone who tries, the rest will back away, people need to be given a chance.

      • James, it is sad to say but we can count on no one but us, veterans and taxpayers. But we must not stop speaking out, contacting our representatives in Congress, and maybe, hopefully, someday, someone will listen.

  4. You know, the Beattles sang a song in the past, ( I think it might have been Apple records, not sure, I was young) “so you think it’s time for a revolution?” Hey, we do have a Constitutional right that states a thing so many have missed, “WE THE PEOPLE CAN DECIDE TO FORM A NEW GOVERNMENT.” I’ll hang out with the young smart ones who have a clue-they really think we shall see a self implosion period in this country, I wonder, are they right?

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