Feds Stop Opioid Drug Dealing Scheme At Little Rock VA, 3 Guilty

102

drug dealing

Three former Little Rock VA employees pled guilty to a drug dealing scheme involving opioids and other drugs intended for veterans.

The US Attorney indicated the former employees diverted the drugs for the purpose of street distribution. The scheme included three former employees and others. Sentencing is set for a later date.

Nikita Neal was a trainee at the facility who conspired to sell the narcotics on the street. She received the drugs from two ex-pharmacy technicians, Alisha Pagan and Steve Patel. The three worked at the John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital, otherwise known as Little Rock VA.

Little Rock VA is part of the troubled Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System. The system is short over 140 nurses and unable to provide services to its patients at full capacity. VA employee shortages are what contributed to illegal schemes in the system exposed last year where employees manipulated wait time data to evade accountability.

According to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:

Nikita Neal, 43, of Little Rock, a former student trainee at the hospital, faced eight counts of diverting controlled substances from the VA for street distribution, according to a news release from the U.S. attorney’s office for the Eastern District of Arkansas. 

Ex-pharmacy technicians Alisha Pagan, 34, of Mablevale and Satishkumar “Steve” Patel, 45, of North Little Rock pleaded guilty to the same charge in August and September, respectively, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette previously reported.

Patel ordered oxycodone, hydrocodone, Viagra, Cialis and promethazine syrup with codeine and later transferred the drugs to Pagan, who delivered them to Neal and others, the release states. Neal then reportedly passed on the drugs to a “street-level distributor.”

Numerous VA employees have been implicated in drug diversion schemes involving opioids over the past few years.

These schemes are not limited to Tomah VA, known as Candy Land, where VA employees were reportedly working while under the influence of narcotics and alcohol before Congress started investigating the facility.

Given the increasing frequency in prosecutions lately, I can only assume more such schemes will be exposed.

Source: http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2017/oct/26/third-former-va-hospital-employee-pleads-guilty-op/

Stay informed on VA news, scandals and benefits. Get our daily newsletter via email.

17343

DisabledVeterans.org

Get our free daily newsletter.

102 COMMENTS

  1. “This investigation began in June 2016, when VAOIG received a report that large amounts of unaccounted-for prescription medications were charged to VA accounts. Patel, a pharmacy technician, used his VA access to a medical supplier’s web portal to order and divert 4,000 oxycodone pills, 3,300 hydrocodone pills, 308 ounces of promethazine with codeine syrup, and more than 14,000 Viagra and Cialis pills, at a cost to the VA of approximately $77,700 dollars, with a street value of more than $160,000. Patel then falsified payment invoices to avoid detection.”

    “https://www.justice.gov/usao-edar/pr/veterans-administration-employees-plead-guilty-conspiring-steal-and-sell-prescription”

      • Most of them are already very large dicks, so if the dicks are persistently presenting their dickyness for 4 hours or more please call your engorged purple team leader, she has a side business dealing with dicks.

    • VA DEATHCARE IS A TOTAL RAW SEWAGE DEATHCARE NOT HEALTHCARE VA DC HQ IS SATANIC @ DEMONIC NO OTHER EXEPLATION VEATS YO ARE ON DEATH PANELS FOR THE BONOUS $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ THAT VA DEATHCARE GIVES ITSELF !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Nice little Indians, Patel and Pagan. Bolly, Bolly, Bolly, Bolly…that’s all I understand from these ass-quirks. Go back to India, all you “drs. and computer shits…all named Patel. Get the fuck out of the U.S.

      • @mumbi jones – – – Hey look my friend, I don’t want to cause any one grief, but I had to laugh at your post. I may not feel as some, but then again, there are some that don’t feel as I. We understand each other. I get a kick out of this, because what you feel, no judging here, is what some Americans feel like. It can’t be denied.

        Now look, you righteous MF’ers trolling on Ben’s blog, don’t you go rogue on me and play the better than card, or moron card, or any other card that goes against what I’m saying. My precision of thought, only deals with the numbers of something.

        So, I’m saying that there are numbers (people, US Citizens that’re Veterans), that feel the same way that my man @mumbi jones feels (I hope you’re a man, and I’m truly sorry ma’am if you’re not). Oh, come on now, take it easy, I don’t mean no offense. Just razzing you bro. Got to get the stress out; it’s late Saturday night, Cable Co. today, removed RT from their programming. There so cheap, these fools expect me to pay extra for FAKE NEWS = CNN. Now no good perspective of world news.

        Back to the numbers, at the least, this reader got some good waves of laughs on my end. Thanks for the longer than normal time periods of laughter. RIGHT THE FUCK ON!!! For the laughs that is. Go figure, because I don’t. LMAO’s that I only have my sphincter left on the back end of things. Oh my, another medical issue, and its relating symptoms. – – – Nutter.

      • You are absolutely right! You can be on the phone with one of these jokers and they will claim their name is Susie, John, Harry , but their real name is longer than the Da Vinci code and shit. REMEMBER,
        Always add “and shit” to your posts , It gets the point across.
        I.E. the bullshit VA is fucked as usual “And Shit” 🤣🤣🤣

      • Funny CJ, Mark E. Wisner former Councilor at VAMC Leavenworth said nearly the same thing just before he added that his addicktion to Cialis may have contributed to his daily pursuit of screwing Veterans at the VAMC along with the rest of the staff. He then also claimed that his addicktion was also related to something in his jeans.

      • Seymore, that name “Mark Wisner”, I don’t know if it is just a common name or what, but sure sounds familiar, though, I cannot place it.

        My comment was a reference to an old joke about burglars breaking into the local pharmacy and stealing all the Viagra, police were looking for a couple of hardened criminals. It would have made more sense if I added “Viagra” and if it posted in the correct location.

        Once again though, your diligence in posting these cases about the various VAMCs, shows this is NOT an isolated incident, but a serious systematic, system wide problem.

        Institute some ACCOUNTABILITY and PUNISHMENT, and SERIOUS PRISON TERMS, and we wouldn’t be reading about these problems daily.

        Keep posting what you find Seymore, and you too Crazy Elf, and 91 Veteran. Show these rat bastard cockroaches, they cannot hide from the truth.

      • CJ what’s concerning with all these stories posted by Seymore is that most are simply local news stories. The VA does a hell of a job at squashing any of these stories getting national coverage, or being covered in a way that exposes the VA for being a disaster on a national scale.

        Imagine any other federal agency having this many problems repeatedly, and what the outrage might be.

      • So true 91Veteran.

        That is what makes the work done on this blog so important. DC and all so called “respectable news agencies”, are not interested. We need the blog to cut through all the vabs.

        ░░░░░░███████ ]▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▄▃==========O>——-(+)V.A.B.S.
        ▂▄▅████BEN███▅▄▃▂
        I███████████████████]
        ..◥⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙▲⊙◤–

        The Kardashians, Jenners, Hiltons, and the rest of the freak show, is much more important, than any Veteran murdered at the hands of incompetent VAMC, personnel.

        We must protest and fight, and never waiver, till we get addadicktome rights for all.

        ╱╱▏╱▏╱▏╱╱╱╱╱╱▏╱╱╱╱╱▏
        ▉╱▉╱▉╱▏▉▉▉▉▉╱┈▉▉▉▉╱
        ▉╱▉╱▉╱▏┈┈▉╱▏┈┈▉╱╱╱╱▏
        ▉╱▉╱▉╱▏┈┈▉╱▏┈┈▉▉▉▉╱
        ▉▉▉▉▉╱┈┈┈▉╱┈┈┈▉╱

        What? you want to live you say? You think you should receive care for all that toxic shit running throughout your entire body? Okay then, step in line 1, fill out the form and submit, I think we may have an answer for you in about 200 years……..”Thank you for your service” …………..NEXT!!!

        …………./´¯/)………….(\¯\
        ............/....//..............\\....\
        .........../....//................\\....\
        ...../´¯/..../´¯\............./¯
        \….\¯\..
        .././.../..../..../.|_......_|.\....\....\...\.\..
        (.(....(....(..../.)..)....(..(.\....)....).....).)
        .\................\/.../....\...\/................/
        ..\................. /........\................../
        ....\..............(............)............../
        ......\.............\.........../............./
        FUCK YOU VA. OIG, DOD, DC.

        I can't wait to meet all you guys on the other side, we gonna party like party never partied before...................BARTENDERRRRR...........another round for my friends........and hold the sassafras, down and dirty, git r done, straight to the gut plumb de plumb.

        ———__————-_,-“~^”-.
        ——-_//-)——_,-“~
        ——-——.
        —–.”-(-/
        ”-,-“————--------—-–;
        —-/-6————————------------—–;
        —/———–,————---------------,-“—--–;
        –(,__.–.——\———---------------–/——---–;
        —//’—/
        -.\—|————————|———-–._________
        —–_.-‘_/
        –)–)–…,,,___________\—–———\———-–,)
        —(((“~-_.-‘.-‘———---------------\---------—)——-—//
        ———(((“
        ——————————-(((—~”———//
        ——————————————–-----------------------((________________
        ————–RAT-BASTARDS—————----------------—-
        —-“”””~~~~^^^“`

        ∩ │◥███◣ ╱◥███◣
        ╱◥◣ ◥████◣▓∩▓│∩ ║
        │╱◥█◣║∩∩∩ ║◥█▓ ▓█◣
        ││∩│ ▓ ║∩田│║▓ ▓ ▓∩ ║
        Goodnight Ben’s World

  2. This is being done everywhere, not just the VA. They prescribed my Dad opioids in large amounts using the favorite street dosage. My Dad never got them. His insurance paid for them, even though they are contraindicated in the elderly. We never could find out what happened to the drugs. The prescribe large amounts just before the ship patients out from the SNF to an acute care facility which is due to a contrived illness. The infamous facility (Mesa Verde, in Costa Mesa, CA) run by Shlomo Rechnitz was doing this and actually included Hoag Hospital in this churning scam. Hoag wrote off $200,000 of my Dad’s hospital bills to keep us quiet. The then installed a trach which my Dad did not need promising to remove it in 3 days. Instead, they shipped my Dad out to another subacute hell hole…Kindred Hospital where they refused to even attempt to take it out due to “short staffing”. So it became permanent. I later found out that keeping a trach in a patient over 21 days bumps up the remuneration rate considerably. Elder care in this country, especially the VA is pure and simple Agenda 21 wholesale murder, all the while financially rapping and pillaging the families’ estates.

  3. Holy bat crap, Batman! Glad to see they are busting these assholes but will it stick?
    I must ask a question about the architectural design of the Little Rock VAMC depicted in today’s “Bad VA Art”. Was it designed and built by hamsters or large cats? It looks like either an animal playhouse or what it is, a hungry, hungry hippos crack house? Are the lg. round windows there to facilitate the extraction of an engorged purple team beast on crack?
    These assholes contributed to and probably fueled opioid & heroin epidemic and these same assholes have the audacity to point fingers at Vets for abusing meds?
    A fuck you to VA this morning! Rat bastards!

  4. I have to believe this isn’t just an isolated case, involving a few VHA’s! I have a sneaky suspicion we’re going to be talking about this issue again and again in the future!

  5. Off-Topic but pertinent: “A Navy veteran is taking a stand against those taking a knee.

    “[John Wells, a retired U.S. Navy commander, turned down an offer from the Saints to be honored prior to last Sunday’s game against the Bears because he can’t “in good conscience” enter an NFL stadium due to the ongoing national anthem protests….]”
    “http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/saints-its-unfortunate-vet-rejects-honor-over-anthem-protests/ar-AAunXY7?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=ientp”

    • namnibor,
      Have you seen where the CEO of Papa John’s Pizza corporation is complaining about his profits are dropping due to the NFL (ignorant) protests of the American Flag and Star Spangled Banner Anthem?!
      True! People are now protesting anyone supporting the NFL!
      Too bad the CEO didn’t come out and denounce the NFL. Instead, he’s complaining about his profits and loses! Fucking idiot liberal democrat pussy! He’s getting what he deserves!

    • I read that, and saw the Saints were sniveling about how he declined the award in such a public manner.

      As if they wouldn’t have used it for their own publicity, and used him in the process.

      • @Crazy elf, @Namnibor, @9Veteran – – – And what most don’t know, is that it is possible, for a corporation to sue the Government for loss of profits due to any trading laws, merchant guidelines, commerce laws, etc.. There’s also a movement, believe it or not, that some organizations are trying to personalize parks, monuments, rivers, etc.. The law is more complex than the VA, oh my dear Lord Jesus (my post, my belief), please help us out. – – – Nutter.

      • Now why is it that one asshole football player can take a knee and it turns into a sensation, but no one starts something like that to create some rage about how our Veterans are treated. Their seems to be some very intelligent Vets here who can really write. In fact I am addicted to this site because the comments are do geniously funny! Last night I started laughing so hard, I started choking and couldn’t talk! So look, my point is, why don’t you come up with some catchy slogan for a placard and I’ll parade it around somewhere. I’m serious! Maybe I could get something going. If Kapaernick can get something started for something so stupid why can’t I. Come on Vets, you write it, I’ll walk it. I live in Pittsburgh.

      • Good to hear you’re laughing Laura. That suggests you are like many veterans and have steeled yourself to having to deal with such morons at the VA.

        Its one of the most infuriating things we might ever face, but laughing once in a while helps.

        Just remember…Illegitimus Non Carborundum.

        Don’t let the bastards grind you down.

        Or in the VAs case, rats of dubious parentage.

      • very good point. The problem is that it’s virtually impossible to get more than 3 Vets on the same subject at the same time

  6. The worst one I experienced on the long term care ward in DC. I was to have Tylenol #3 for back pain. The orderly gave my a aspirin. You can tell the distinct taste of aspirin the minute it touches your tongue.

    Obviously the men screaming in pain weren’t getting their morphene, Demerol, etc. but some substitute while the drugs were going out the door. And the director wouldn’t take my word for what was going on. I was a homeless person put on the ward for a while. Didn’t matter I was a former medic with 13.5 years of experience. So they are still doing it the DC VA.

    Also have a prescription for a narcotic in my name that was never ordered for me there. Probably had a Dr. in on the scheme. Have to look up my pharmacy record in DC to tell you exactly which Dr. and, of course don’t know the pharmacist.

    Anyway, going to the director’s office was the wrong approach. Should have gone directly to DEA. But my brain wasn’t working then as well as it is now. My seizures weren’t being medicated.

    • @Lem – – – I missed your post. Don’t have boxed checked for “Notify of New Replies.” But hey, your exactly right in this approach. I’ve decided to the exact same thing your talking about. Wrote to VA Patient Advocate about complaints and disputes, absolutely no replies. Multiple messages sent. And, I’m not, unless I need to, going to file an FOIA all the time. Filing FOAI’s shouldn’t have to be in the first place. You should be able to ask, and then obtain what you need that is of your own record, or public information. What a joke. – – – Nutter.

  7. As usual I feel compelled to add to the already clever and insightful words Ben writes today – just for the sake of historical accuracy.

    Ben writes us today that, “Little Rock VA is part of the troubled Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System.”

    I added, “Which is a part of the troubled Eastern Veterans Health Care System, which is a part of the troubled National Veterans Health Care System, which is a partner to the troubled Veterans Benefits System,
    both of which are a part of the troubled Department of Veterans Affairs,
    which is currently overseen by a troubled VA Secretary.”

    (Ben, you should really consider the use of run on sentences to make your points bro)

    Semper Fi

    • RAND Corp. would like you to know that the term “troubled” has been redefined and repurposed into a 5 flaming red buzzer lights rating system. The more “troubled” the VA appears, the MORE $$ flows into it and way it’s always been. No such thing as “troubled waters” at the VA, just tainted pissy people in a systemic mess of a system.

  8. Here’s an interesting article out from: “Military.com/Daily News”
    Titled;

    “Vets Overwhelmingly Back Legalizing Medical Marijuana: Legion Survey”

    Dated: 2 Nov 2017
    “Military.com” | by Richard Sisk.

    There’s LOTS of statistics in the article!

  9. So Bergdahl ends up getting a Dishonorable discharge and no prison time for desertion…

    No justice in this country.

    • He’s being groomed to be a future replacement for Insane McCain. All Bergdahl needs to do is marry a beer mogul’s daughter and instant congress critter in the making. Think about it: they’ve now painted as if he was “captured” by the Talibandit Teletubies but he deserted, converted, and think about congress critters such as McCain or that other one Kerry…all questionable honorable situations and personalities…Senator Bergdahl….or…the VSO’s will crown him with a new funny hat while he’s fighting to get his Dishonorable Discharge upgraded when the next liberal is POTUS?
      Wait for it…

    • Traitorous coward should have gotten 20 at hard labor to go along with that dishonorable discharge. By constantly showing “mercy” to those who fuck up in the worst possible ways – – – then lie to cover it, or “spin” a story so as to save face – – – our society becomes nothing more than an enabler.

      Time to stop enabling. Real actions should have real, mandatory consequences when caught.

      What pussies our once proud military leaders gave become in these PC times.

      • Dessert for Fire Ants In A Wet Desert:
        Since he is a deserter, it would be a balancing factor for the universe if Bergdahl was suspended up to his earlobes only in quicksand while 2 LBs of raw honey is poured on his propped-open mouth and other jar adding final ingredient guaranteed to make him think about things, a mason jar of fire ants to feast on the honey. I’m not sadistic, nope, not one bit.

  10. This is only the tip of the iceberg. FBI, DEA, ATF, DOJ, and other Federal Agencies need to seriously get involved. Don’t call your State Representatives, each and everyone of us Vets should spend our time calling and submitting complaints to these Agency’s.

    That’s what I’ve been doing, and one call will not be enough oil to put on the greasy wheel that symbolizes taking care of the VA. If possible, depending on each Vets circumstances (I know better not to put all Vets into the same box), all of us Vets needs to change the strategy on the VA.

    I believe that overall, and down the line, that its a better maneuver when dealing with the VA. This has been my deduction for a long time. Otherwise, all we’ll get is story after fucking story, on how we’re getting fucked over. Let’s stop playing with the VA. Any better suggestions? Please post. OK, say no more, I understand, as a response, dark humor is accepted. – – – Nutter.

  11. Well, if 3 were prosecuted, that would suggest double that amount were involved at a minimum.
    I bet you could then times that number by 4 of the employees who were involved, buying or flat just looking the other way on what was going on.
    No mention of the street level distributor being prosecuted. Hmmm.

    The question still needing to be answered is whether any vets had their medications diverted, or if any vet was falsely accused or implicated with prescription records being falsified.

    News reports show over $160,000 in drugs were diverted. Management there must have a heckuva tracking and inventory system. Those reports show the investigation started in June 2016 because the OIG got a tip about drugs not being accounted for. Why a tip to the OIG rather than local management finding this? Like the Chief if the Pharmacy?

    Doesn’t this suggest the OIG could be more forceful in referring other crimes for prosecution? Or do they only do that when VA is losing money?

    Did someone tip off DEA in addition to the OIG to make sure something was done?

    The indictment happened in early February. The last plead guilty in October. Did the AFGE insure they were kept on the payroll the whole time?

    How is it a 43 year old can get hired into a trainee position? Relatives?

  12. I’m curious about any electronic pharmacy records being fed into Shulkins new WOBR system, and if any sirens go off when certain amounts of drugs are not accounted for.

    • That WOBR system’s hard drives are driven by Isaacson’s Stairmaster, so I doubt any sirens go off, if ever. However, the WOBR system will now be able to detect Travel Pay Fraud down to a fraction of a fraction in accordance to your make and model of transportation and account for altitude of crows flying and fuel mileage…spared absolutely no expense.

      • I have no doubt the WOBR system could calculate down to the last fraction how much I would owe the VA if I rode a unicycle backwards to an appointment.

        Just like it would round up the calculation for every dollar awarded as a bonus based on veterans screwed and money “saved the VA” by not treating them.

  13. A Mission Statement per the VA that I hold dearly onto; “Real Change. Real Reform. Real Accountability. And, Nothing Less.” Thoughts or other actions not fitting, are futile. Now get the fuck out, and don’t come back. Thank you. (have you heard that phrase before?).

    And listen folks, you have the most beautiful fucking weekend, and hey, go ahead and treat yourself. I am by leaving a message to my VA PCP, and informing her that due to the manipulation of my medical care, and the continuance of this type of negligent behavior, is totally unacceptable and dangerous to practice medicine in this manner, and that her actions are considered to be the “intentional inflictions of emotional stress (IIES).”

    And hey, for some of you doubters out there, I have many VA snail mail, with the contents of a signed medical report, which CLEARLY REVEALS this type of negligence has been ongoing.

    Now the BIG problem comes about, finding someone with clout, influence, and power that will take my position out of concern, and have sympathy for my justified cause (stop VA from violating all sorts of legal rights). Local Politicians are too busy, VA Patient Advocate is more concerned about protecting other VA employees than protecting you, etc.. So we need to try new tactics with dealing with the VA. We’re better than this!!!

    As things come about, I’ll post any accomplishments, struggles, and other issues that come about in this situation. I realize that many of you may have already gone through what I’m currently experiencing, so my posts will be for others, or possibly a reminder to you. Hmm.

    Therefore, I don’t like to count my eggs before they’re in my basket, but the actions of my VA PCP keeps affirming this statement, so I’ll say no more than this; “The better the evidence, the sweeter the deal.” – – Nutter.

  14. The Department of Justice (DOJ) says that in the Eastern District of Arkansas, 24 defendants were charged for their roles in three drug diversion schemes that were all investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

    The operation is being called the largest health care fraud enforcement action in DOJ history.

    In Arkansas, Patrick C. Harris, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas and Stephen G. Azzam, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) New Orleans Field Division, who oversees the DEAs’ Little Rock District Office, announced the unsealing of three indictments charging 24 defendants in schemes intended to divert pharmaceutical pills to the streets.
    “http://www.fox16.com/news/local-news/24-arrested-in-ar-for-health-care-fraud/764626734”

  15. The VA lacks the insight of basic ideas, for their front line employees to use, that creates the passion of any changes. There’re a lot of blockages in the VA’s pipelines, of all their services they provide to Veterans, and most likely their employees too. WTF. I’ll be happy if and when, someone comes along bringing with them the wind of change. That’ll be one glorious day, that maybe starts the changes in the VA. – – – Nutter.

  16. “Cases Involving Alleged Drug Theft at VA Health Facilities”

    Some notable cases involving alleged drug theft at Department of Veterans Affairs health facilities.
    Feb. 20, 2017, at 9:00 a.m

    “https://www.usnews.com/news/arkansas/articles/2017-02-20/cases-involving-alleged-drug-theft-at-va-health-facilities”

    • UTAH

      An associate chief of pharmacy at the VA medical center in Salt Lake City recently pleaded guilty to acquiring possession of a controlled substance by fraud, according to the inspector general’s office. The VA employee was accused of diverting about 25,000 pills, including oxycodone, hydromorphone, Adderall, buprenorphine, Ritalin, and tramadol from the inpatient pharmacy from October 2011 to March 2015. A spokeswoman for the VA facility, Jill Atwood, has said the hospital since added new software, training and made procedural changes to ensure that similar thefts don’t happen again.

    • NEW YORK

      A former hospice nurse at the VA medical center in Albany was sentenced last year to more than six years in prison after admitting to stealing pain medication intended for patients. An investigation alleges the VA nurse stole the painkiller oxycodone hydrochloride from syringes to feed his drug addiction and replaced the contents with Haldol, an anti-psychotic medication. At his sentencing hearing, family members of some of the hospice patients gave statements detailing the pain and suffering the nurse inflicted on dying veteran patients.

      • Adding Haldol to a syringe with the intent to decieve a controlled substance count is a direct felonious act. without the proper anticholinergenic to combat the side effects if it where administered, could have killed a patient easily!
        That birdhead needs to fry!

    • RHODE ISLAND
      A former registered nurse in the intensive care unit of the Providence VA medical center pleaded guilty last year to stealing prescription drugs. Authorities say the nurse admitted that on dozens of occasions over several months in 2015 she used an override feature of an automated medication dispensing system to obtain hundreds of controlled substance pills, such as oxycodone and morphine. The pills weren’t prescribed for or provided to patients. The IG’s office says the nurse had previously been fired from a private hospital for allegedly diverting controlled substances, but was hired at the VA after making false claims in her application.

    • CALIFORNIA — A former resident anesthesiologist at the VA medical center in West Los Angeles pleaded guilty in 2015 to theft of public property and possession of a controlled substance while treating a veteran. Authorities say while providing anesthesia care to a veteran in surgery, the doctor passed out in the operating room after taking a sedative and injecting himself with controlled substances including fentanyl. His fully conscious patient lay nearby and said he was initially frightened that the commotion was due to his own medical condition, according to news reports.

    • Non-Veteran Sentenced for Drug Distribution
      A non-veteran was sentenced to 5 years’ incarceration (2 years suspended) and three years’ probation after pleading guilty to drug distribution. The defendant was arrested after selling heroin during an undercover operation. An OIG, VA Police Service, and local police investigation was initiated after a veteran inpatient died from a heroin overdose at the West Haven, CT, VAMC. During the investigation, it was alleged that the defendant was supplying heroin to VAMC employees who in turn were distributing the drugs at the medical center.
      VA

      • Here’s a story for you. In the 1970’s and 80’s I went to college and then to graduate school at University of Pittsburg for a master’s degree in nursing. The VA Hospital was located within a cluster of hospitals and the university. I was married to a Dr. at that time who was doing a residency. The residents and nursing students had to do clinical rotations at the VA Hospital. It was a run on joke always about the substandard of care there. Face it, the doctors and nurses who want jobs there are not the good, smart ones. They want a cushy job.Nurses want it because they can keep their seniority if they switch to another government job. I spent many a night listening to VA stories of horror. On one occasion, I witnessed a Dr. looking up at the ceiling with a serious look on his face while he moved the stethoscope around the Veteran’s chest having the patient breathe in and out. Problem was, the doc didn’t have the earpieces of the stethoscope in his ears! I remember being totally shocked and didn’t know whether to laugh or cry!

      • Oh my, that’s life threatening. Nowadays, if this same thing happened today, and someone complained about the Doctor, they’d give the Doctor a bonus for not doing something worse! Although, the Doctors behavior would be considered normal if the Doctor was examining disruptive Veteran patients. After all, your story involves a process of examining, not an emergency, or a scheduled medical intervention considered to be of a complex nature or process.

        Well hey, what information you got for Nam Era Vets? Thanks. – – – Nutter.

      • “Vietnam”
        •••••••••••••
        Dear,
        Mr. Vietnam Veteran,
        ••
        Allow me to finally
        welcome you home.
        Gratitude something
        to you not made known.
        •••
        Now I’ll explain
        what you do not know.
        You are the reason
        to war I did go.
        •••
        We share things the same
        like wars with no gains.
        Battles we won
        but losses in vain.
        •••
        We share way too much
        but one thing insane.
        We share this in common
        our countries disdain.
        ••
        Sincerely,
        Mr. Iraq Veteran
        •••••••••••••••••••••••••
        © Copyright-Gregory J. Fino-June 30, 2017
        •US Marine Corps (0311)
        •PurpleHeartPoetry (Iraq 2005)
        •3rd Battalion 25th Marines, Kilo Company
        [email protected]

      • “Old Corps”
        ••••••••••••••
        Vietnam Old-Corps
        shamed nations few.
        Young U.S. lives
        taken too soon.
        ••••
        Old Breed G.I.s
        died when told to.
        New-Corps so different
        hard just a few.
        ••••
        Black-PJs, Gooks
        NVA, VietCong.
        We lost too many
        eight years too long.
        ••••
        Battle of A Shau
        plagued booby traps.
        Flag draped new caskets
        bugles played taps.
        ••••
        Ungrateful nation
        right here at home.
        Grunts versus “Charlie”
        yes, there alone.
        ••••
        Hue, City fighting
        Six-Eight was Tet.
        By pungee pit spikes
        young fates were met.
        ••••
        Iraq-Vietnam
        yours and now mine.
        To my Generation
        honored that’s fine.
        ••••
        Exit all jungles
        you are dismissed.
        Your legacy stays
        we’ll see it persists.
        •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••
        © Copyright-Gregory J. Fino-July 23, 2017
        •US Marine Corps (0311)
        •PurpleHeartPoetry (Iraq 2005)
        •3rd Batallion 25th Marines, Kilo Company

  17. “Former VA Chief Of Staff Faces Drug Theft Charges”
    By Benjamin Krause – June 21, 2017
    “https://www.disabledveterans.org/2017/06/21/former-va-chief-of-staff-faces-drug-theft-charges/”

    According to court records reviewed by the Herald Mail, Dr. Daniel J. Bochicchio was charged with multiple counts linked to illegally acquiring the drug fentanyl. Bochicchio allegedly used private patient information to secure large quantities of the painkiller.

    Fentanyl is many times stronger than morphine, 50 to 100 times, and can be mixed with heroin to lower costs for drug dealers.

    The court documents reportedly show the doctor unlawfully received drugs as part of the scheme for a few months after being selected to serve as the chief of staff at Martinsburg VA Medical Center, located in West Virginia.

    • Today here in Columbus, OH the Dept. of health announced they made a HUGE fentanyl bust of OVER 4 LBS…enough to kill every soul in Columbus, OH. It’s now even being found presumably, sprinkled on weed and other drugs now, not just heroin…I call this chemical warfare. It is what it is.

  18. “VA Drug Thefts Continue Despite New Efforts”
    Associated Press | 29 May 2017 | by Hope Yen
    “http://www.military.com/daily-news/2017/05/29/ap-exclusive-va-drug-thefts-continue-new-efforts.html”

    “Federal authorities have launched dozens of new criminal investigations into possible opioid and other drug thefts by employees at Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals, a sign the problem isn’t going away despite new prevention efforts.

    Data obtained by The Associated Press show 36 cases opened by the VA inspector general’s office from Oct. 1 through May 19. It brings the total number of open criminal investigations to 108 involving missing prescriptions, theft or unauthorized drug use. Most of those probes typically lead to criminal charges.

    The numbers are an increase from a similar period in the previous year.”

    • while you’re at it, investigate Baltimore, MA as well. I sat there for hours with a BP of 235/125. All the time one drunk street lounger after another was send to examination rooms.

  19. Sorry, Manchester NH!! My brief same thing is going in at Milwaukee VA! Maybe , viral, so does a reporter from Boston Globe, Spotlight!!!! Please read and help me and all veterans!!

  20. “VA’s Fails to Follow Own Requirements for New Hire Drug Testing”
    US Medicine The Voice of Federal Medicine
    April 2017 | Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

    Monthly Investigations — GAO Director of Healthcare Randall Williamson told lawmakers that VHA requires medical facilities to conduct monthly inspections that follow procedures outlined by VA. GAO found in a review of four medical facilities it conducted from January 2015 to February 2016, however, that the oversight was inconsistent.
    Williamson told lawmakers that he estimated that, overall, as few as 10% to 15% of VA facilities nationwide are following agency inspection procedures, making them vulnerable to drug diversion.

    The Big Lie about VA Piss tests for new hires: “WASHINGTON — VA is “committed to 100% testing of all final selectees” for its safety-sensitive occupations prior to their appointment, lawmakers were told recently.

    In addition, the agency is working to ensure that drug checks at medical facilities are performed and follow all requirements, according to VHA Deputy Undersecretary for Health for Organizational Excellence Carolyn Clancy, MD.

    Clancy made her comments at a hearing held by a House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs subcommittee in late February that assessed VA’s risks for drug diversion.”
    __________

    The truth is: “While VA’s policy states that every individual tentatively selected for employment in a Testing Designated Position (TDP) is subject to a drug test before appointment, the OIG found that this had been interpreted by human resources as meaning only some finalists for TDPs needed to undergo those tests before being appointed.

    As a result, the OIG estimated that prehire drug tests were not performed for about 15,800 of the nearly 22,600 individuals who were appointed into VA positions, including physicians, nurses, senior executives, police office and motor vehicle operators during fiscal year FY 2013.

    That year, according to the OIG, VA achieved a national employee random drug testing rate of 68% of the 3,420 employees selected for that program in FY 2013.

    More recently, the VA OIG issued a report in January on delays in the processing of certain human resources functions at the Atlanta VAMC, noting that mandatory drug testing for new hires did not occur for a period of at least six months between 2014 and 2015 because of an open facility coordinator’s position.

    “Because no drug testing occurred, the Atlanta VAMC lacked assurance that employees who should have been subject to drug testing remained suitable for employment,” Dahl said.

    Keith Berge, MD, who chairs Mayo Clinic’s Enterprise-wide Medication Diversion Prevention Committee, told lawmakers the consequence of lapses in drug testing is that you might “be letting someone who would test positive, and is in fact an addict, into an area where they could get their hands on drugs.”

    The other big lie on VA Drug Diversions: “Diversion Data

    Lawmakers also questioned VA’s drug diversion data during the hearing. The VA reported that data from Jan. 2, 2014, through March 11, 2016, show that VA had 2,405 reports of internal and external losses, some of which were due to diversion. The agency said data also indicates that approximately 92% of the controlled substances losses occur in the mailing system during shipping to veterans, with only 1.5% due to diversion by VA staff.

    Skeptical of VA’s data on the large percentage of losses in the mail system, Rep. Neal Dunn (R-FL), MD, said he “has never seen anything like the report.”

    “This is perilously close to the old excuse: the dog ate my homework,” he said.

    When asked to explain about the drug losses in the mail system Clancy said that “between the time that prescriptions are put in the envelope, and — understand we have a central mail order pharmacy, which for most prescriptions works extraordinarily well — somewhere between there and the veterans’ home where it was supposed to go, is where it is diverted.”

    Dunn said he was “flabbergasted” by those numbers.

    “In 35 years, I have never heard this kind of accusation that 90% are in the postal system,” he said.

    Williamson said he also would be “suspicious” of those numbers because “VA doesn’t have a very good reporting system for drug diversion cases.”

    • “Bureaucratic Bullshit”
      •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••
      Xanax, opioids
      Prozac and more!
      take every med
      your hope, your cure!

      Come back next month
      we’ll give you some more
      we’ll fix what is broke,
      from your combat tour.

      PTS you do have,
      prognosis it’s poor
      diagnosed in “oh”-6,
      “oh”-5, Marine Corps.

      Those rumors you hear
      they’re slander, so fake
      just do what we say,
      comply for God’s sake!

      Our doctors know
      all meds to take
      tailored for symptoms,
      your War did make.

      Incompetent? No
      more rumors say they
      Bureaucracy YAY,
      believe us, okay?

      Our employees, great!
      Top notch, we repeat
      the cream of the crop,
      they cannot be beat!

      Why do you ask
      continuity-care
      retaining good doctors,
      we say that’s not rare!

      Those who say different,
      blatant false lies
      simply sick veterans,
      most likely high.

      Why’s it so hard,
      to terminate staff?

      Federal employees,
      why do you ask?
      It has nothing to do
      with duties, or tasks.

      You say they’re inept
      we say you are wrong
      we say you’re not well,
      saw combat too long.

      Disagree with us, do it
      sing that same song
      it’s fine, that’s your choice,
      who said you were wrong?

      Go where you want
      receive the best care
      go and be well,
      don’t use us, “Take Care” 🙂

      Did we mention, we won’t
      pay med bills accrued?
      Yup, that is right,
      those fees are on you!

      You’ll be back soon,
      your savings all lost
      pay out of pocket,
      what private care costs?

      Socialized medicine,
      you shall now get
      how do you like it?
      We say it’s a hit!

      Mistakes mean so much
      our care is so good
      so good it’s the best,
      as good as you’ll get.

      Just one more question
      we have for you
      which is more dangerous,
      be honest! Okay?

      MALFUNCTIONING GUN
      or CORRUPT VA?
      •••••••••••••••••••••••••
      © Copyright-Gregory J. Fino-
      •US Marine Corps (0311)
      •PurpleHeartPoetry (Iraq 2005)
      •3rd Battalion 25th Marines
      •July 1, 2017

    • The agency said data also indicates that approximately 92% of the controlled substances losses occur in the mailing system during shipping to veterans, with only 1.5% due to diversion by VA staff…….
      I would bet my life on it that those %’S the VA Quoted where reversed …And as for..“VA doesn’t have a very good reporting system for drug diversion cases.”…
      Fuck the VA’S reporting system go to the post office tracking system and see what that says, Easily proven they are all full of Shit.
      Williamson said he also would be “suspicious” of those numbers….So what did he do about it, I would Bet absolutely NOTHING…..That’s why they keep getting away with it Nothing more than a show.
      FUCK YOU VA

      • Ex- VA Sec. McDonald Duck & Co. even admitted before the engorged idiot congress critters that supposedly have Veteran’s best interests that, (and I quote), “The VA is not very good with numbers…”. There you have it, the VA claims ignorance when a more dense smog of swamp gas is needed to cover-up an even larger problem and most importantly, when it serves the VA’s best interest.

      • Well they need to start taking off their shoes and start using their Toes They might get better with the dumb-bers

      • VA excuses often bring lots of questions.

        For some reason, the VA has a known, widespread problem of being unable to track drugs. Supposedly ordering, inventory and dispensing software somehow fails to catch theft.

        Can you imagine the screaming if their payroll was so sloppy that $160,000 was diverted from employees in a year?
        Or from bonuses? Or from travel?

        Are not prescriptions barcoded and scanned. If an order is placed with a vendor, one would expect it would flag the system until the order was received and scanned into inventory.
        One would think scanning prescriptions would lower that inventory automatically so it would flag them to order more. Periodic scanning of remaining inventory matched against order inventory would suggest they would catch diversion quickly. They should be able to track exact inventory daily.

        Like civilian hospitals do.

        Good thing the VA doesn’t handle babies being born. Their friggin nursery would be missing a couple babies every week.

        RFID technology was all the rage a few years ago when they were trying to tag all kinds of things to track, like cows for mad cow disease. If there were an outbreak, they could track down everywhere that cow had been right up until the burger hit your plate in just a couple days.

        Why not RFID tags on sealed drug inventory so when employees leave, everyone can hear the alarms go off like at Wal-Mart? Why doesn’t the OIG conduct stings with RFID tags?

        Rather than using technology the private sector has used for years, the VA spends money on their WOBR system so they can track how many nurses they need to hire at VA Bugtussel. Likely because the director at VA Bugtussel is too incompetent to report a nurse quit, was fired, was jailed or fell into the whirlpool last week, and they need to hire another.

        84 nurses were hired when the WOBR alarm went off. Did they just not notice 84 nurses didn’t show up one day? Would that not suggest maybe looking at management about why the turnover is so high?

      • @91Veteran – – – VA has admitted in the past, that they have an illicit drug problem but do not know where to start, or how to track their problems. I guess were seeing this matter live, due to changes in VA with the Super Analytical Data Senter (SADS). – – – Nutter.

      • ANutterVet, I fully believe they have the ability to track all kinds of things.

        There is just no will to do so.

      • That’s a very good possibility of the VA having the possibility to perform multiple cross references, correlations, amounts, time, etc. (tracking). Also, I’m aware of so-called and like-Opportunity Trackers, that scope organizational problems, distribution, production, operations, fittings, new contracts, etc., and then these hunters contact other businesses, and then turn over leads to them for new contract work.

        I say this, because someone could have read that past article, that was mentioned here on Ben’s world. Hey, a 5 – 10% commission adds up to a lot of monies, especially if the job costs are in the millions. And, in by way of your point (VA most likely track movement in many ways), that if I was consulting, I’d up tick the cost to fix, every time that I discovered a way to save the VA more money (multiple tracking means more money per type of tracking applications).

        But, at the same time, knowing the VA like we do, we could be off track, them paying way too much for basically less tracking types. What do you think @91Veteran?

  21. FDA Inspections, Compliance, Enforcement, and Criminal Investigations
    “September 27, 2017: Amerisourcebergen Specialty Group Pleads Guilty to Distributing Misbranded Drugs and is Sentenced to Pay $260 Million to Resolve Criminal Liability”

    “Pharmaceutical Wholesaler Admits to Illegally Distributing Millions of Misbranded Oncology Drug Products and Failing to Register with the Food and Drug Administration ”

    “The illegal misbranding and distribution of drugs threatens the health and safety of U.S. military members, retirees and their dependents,” stated DCIS Special Agent-in-Charge Barzey. “Today’s guilty plea is demonstrative of DCIS’s ongoing commitment to work jointly with the USAO EDNY, FDA, HHS OIG and OPM-OIG, in order to protect members of the Armed Forces and to ensure the integrity of the Defense Department’s TRICARE healthcare system.”

    “https://www.fda.gov/ICECI/CriminalInvestigations/ucm577788.htm”

    • Even with a $260 Million fine I would bet they made a nice profit, should of forced them to shut the company down, but they probably got another fat con-tract.

      Amerisourcebergen
      “To improve patients’ lives by delivering innovative products and
      services that drive quality and efficiency in pharmaceutical care”
      I wonder how many politicians are invested in that company.
      “demonstrative of DCIS’s ongoing commitment”
      Yea, To get a fatter budget

  22. “Former Leavenworth VA hospital worker sentenced for sex crimes against patients” By Tony Rizzo, KC Star, November 03, 2017

    A former worker at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Leavenworth was sentenced to 15 years and seven months in prison Friday for sexually abusing patients.

    Mark E. Wisner, 66, was convicted at trial of sex crimes involving four patients at the VA medical center where he worked as a physician assistant.

    A Leavenworth County District Court jury in August found Wisner guilty of criminal sodomy, aggravated sexual battery and three counts of sexual battery.

    Read more here: “http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article182546166.html#storylink=cpy”

  23. “Active shooter scare raises concerns: Is VA crisis center ready for its own crisis?”
    investigations By Staff Writer – The Watchdog blog Premium, Thursday, November 02, 2017

    “When the VA launched the veterans crisis line call center in Atlanta last December it was touted as a critical part of a national system that would answer thousands of calls from distressed and suicidal veterans every day.

    But in the rush to open the new center, VA executives seem to have overlooked an important facet of its operation: Adequate crisis training for the center itself. So, on the evening of Oct. 24 when an operator in the Atlanta center received a threat around 6:45 p.m. from a frequent caller who suggested active shooters were about to kill everyone in the building, staff and leaders seemed confused and without a clear idea how to respond.”

    More at: “http://www.myajc.com/news/special-reports/active-shooter-scare-raises-concerns-crisis-center-ready-for-its-own-crisis/3KNWsM6j6JnHoerdxl7cwM/”

  24. “Inspection of Oklahoma VA Health System finds deficiencies”
    by The Associated Press, Thursday, November 2nd 2017

    “Among other things, the report says the lack of a stable, permanent system director contributed to a weak organizational environment at the facility that serves veterans in 48 counties in Oklahoma and two in north-central Texas and includes the Oklahoma City VA Medical Center. It also noted unauthorized use of the system’s computerized patient record system.”

    “http://okcfox.com/news/local/inspection-of-oklahoma-va-health-system-finds-deficiencies”

  25. “Secretary of Veterans Affairs considers 14 conditions linked to Agent Orange exposure”, Wednesday, November 1, 2017

    “https://manchesterinklink.com/secretary-of-veterans-affairs-considers-14-conditions-linked-to-agent-orange-exposure/”

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. David J. Shulkin on Wednesday announced that he is considering possible new presumptive conditions that may qualify for disability compensation for veterans related to Agent Orange exposure.

    “After thoroughly reviewing the National Academy of Medicine (NAM)’s latest report regarding Veterans and Agent Orange, and associated data and recommendations from the NAM Task Force, I have made a decision to further explore new presumptive conditions for service connection that may ultimately qualify for disability compensation,” Secretary Shulkin said.

    • So Shulkin is saying…more research is needed, 42 years after the last vet left Vietnam.

      I bet they ran the numbers through the WOBR and found out too many were still alive that would gain service connection.

      Isn’t it interesting to see the insurance company that has 42 years minimum of medical evidence, can also decide whether they are liable for coverage? And if their liability looks to be too large based on the records they have, they can deny that liability?

  26. Let me tell you some good news. For the first time EVER the federal government, Mr. Jeff Sessions, is being compelled to testify before the judiciary who question the legality of putting marijuanna on the list of drugs (CSA) that “have no medical value” to humans.

    It took a veteran to do this! Let me post a copy and paste from the article. This is a pretty big deal for this subject because it has NEVER happend that the courts are now putting the Executive on trial in this matter. Here is how it went;

    “Jose’s treatment providers at the Veterans Administration informed Jose that they are unable to prescribe medical cannabis because it is illegal under the CSA,” reads the suit, referring to Belen, the military veteran.

    “We are seeking a ‘declaration’ to that effect, and also a permanent injunction restraining enforcement of the CSA as written, as it pertains to cannabis,..”

    I use highly purified cannabis oil which has replaced all meds for pain, anxiett, and PTSD. It works and this guy thinks so too. My hat is off to him.

  27. Prediction;

    If it ever comes to pass that we Constitutionally forbid the federal government from procurring or dispensing opiate prescription drugs then we will see VA lose all political support. We are sensing and seeing a bit of that now that FDA has clamped down on opiate prescription. I bet veteran support of VA took a fifty point hit when they were forced to cease prescribing opiates on such a widespread basis. So political support has already eroded and not just legitimate support either.

    The scumballs in this article are not the only vermin out there but you can bet as the supplies dry up the other vermin involved will simply go away. The gators don’t hang out at a dried up watering hole. Support and understanding from the criminal element involved in our politics also drops away because that kind of support is results oriented.

    Why not pass a law forbidding our government from trafficking in the white death? There are gobs of ways for patients needing these things to get them in the private sector and I have to wonder if it was ever a good idea to let ANY government employee be involved in distributing opiate at all. If the word “opiate” is not synonymous with “corruption” then I do not know what is.

  28. “DNC Unveils Clinton Institute for Campaign Ethics Reform In Response to Corruption Allegations.”, Staff, The Onion, Nov. 1st, 2017

    “WASHINGTON—Saying that the new organization would be aimed at upholding the political party’s standard of conduct and ideals, the Democratic National Committee unveiled Thursday the Clinton Institute For Campaign Ethics Reform in response to recent allegations of election rigging during the 2016 primary. “The DNC is taking these claims of misconduct very seriously, which is why we have founded, with the help of a generous $40 million donation from an anonymous benefactor, this new institute whose main focus will be to look into corruption claims like these,” said chairman Tom Perez, adding that a committee has been formed to review the party’s practices and will be led by former DNC chair and current democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who eagerly volunteered her services and intimate knowledge of the 2016 election.”

    More at: “https://politics.theonion.com/dnc-unveils-clinton-institute-for-campaign-ethics-refor-1820092241”

    • That’s a bit like sadistic cannibal serial killer Jeffery Dahmer, had he lived in prison, being granted chief prison priest duties with an obsession for communion with blood of still-missing prior staff Jeffery replaced. DNC or any political party and ethics? HA! Pour me another…

    • More from the article:

      ““The institute’s initial funding will go toward hiring numerous consultants, lawyers, and policy experts whose experience and advice will be essential in retooling the DNC to align with our value system as democrats and Americans.” At press time, the DNC announced plans to maintain the Clinton Institute’s independence by raising capital with several $30,000-per-plate fundraising dinners.”

  29. RICO is the poster child of the VA as a whole. Good employees are paying the price along with thousands of veterans. How about some jail time for employees who retaliate against fellow employees and veterans they falsely accuse of disruptive behavior.

  30. After this super data gets up and running, and the bugs are all worked out or fixed, be prepared for some celebrations to be put on because of the VA for failures, that’re manipulated and twisted into “THEIR” form of successes. Get ready for more; when the Vets scream, I scream, and run for more ice cream. What flavor do you want? Tahitian Vanilla, Dark German Chocolate, Malted Mehecono, Saipan Strawberry, or Caucasian Le Crèmento?

    Shooting at Baptist Church in Texas. Multiple casualties, check your news. – – – Nutter.

    • For those that are unaware. I was referring to the VA’s Ice Cream Day. All of my statements aren’t to be taken literally. You must do you own research, to make up your own decision, in determining what news is Fake News, and what news is not. In the past, the major News Networks, ABC, CBS, and NBC, prided themselves of providing accurate news, and being the first one to report the news incidents. Nowadays, it’s backwards, being first to report news is key. – – – Nutter.

Comments are closed.