West Haven VA May Pay Big In Scalpel Malpractice Suit, ‘Clearly A Seven-Figure Case’
Four years after a surgery at West Haven VA, veteran Glenford Turner had an X-ray that revealed the agency left a scalpel in his abdomen following prostate cancer surgery.
Turner is a 61-year-old Iraq War veteran living in Bridgeport, CT. According to his attorney, the veteran experienced dizziness and abdominal pains and sought treatment.
Apparently, the veteran first went back to West Haven VA earlier this spring for an MRI to find out what happened. During that procedure, the pain got worse and the process was stopped. A subsequent X-ray found the scalpel.
Had the MRI proceeded, the magnetic pull from the machine against the metal embedded in his body could have killed him.
RELATED: AFGE Demands Investigation Into Veterans Choice Contractors
“In my judgment, it’s clearly a seven-figure case when somebody leaves a scalpel like this in you and you have the future risk of having infections or adhesions or other problems that could necessitate additional surgery,” attorney Joel Faxon said in an interview.
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal responded to the lawsuit with a statement, saying he was “appalled and stunned” by the “egregious” malpractice.
“While the court determines liability, I have asked for a detailed explanation from VA of this deeply troubling report,” Blumenthal said in the statement. “I am demanding also full accountability so this kind of horrific negligence never happens again. America owes our veterans the world’s best medical care, nothing less.”
RELATED: Check Out Roseburg VA Death Panel
This issue aside, I wanted to follow up quickly about comments I made on MLK day concerning how Google is screwing around with their algorithms. My dad called to talk to me about it and was a little worried, making me think I painted a bleak picture for the future of this website.
The future of this site is only up, but there will be some hiccups that only I have to deal with. Readers should not have any problems and can repost topics and excerpts here to continue the conversation. Creating a community to charge forward with increased accountability and transparency is the whole point.
RELATED: Veteran Genomic Data Pimped Out To Private Company
Basically, Google spun up into high gear to re-assess websites that provide commentary and feedback about the government and other topics… but mainly the government. Whether you are right, left or center, independent publishers are getting hit, for now.
I am convinced the pendulum will swing back the other way, and for that reason, do not worry about this platform. Enough major players in DC read this on a regular basis just to keep up with what’s going on in veteran circles. The reach here is still significant, and my reach on other mediums like TV still directs traffic back here.
RELATED: Congress Kicks VA Another $2.1 Billion
That said, I read a lot of comments about veterans wanting to pitch in and create a wiki. I have wanted to create such a platform, and this website framework is actually prebaked with that functionality. I just have not turned it on.
Meaning, I will now turn it on. Give me a couple weeks and I’ll turn on the back end features, test them out, and away we will go.
In the meantime, share the heck out of the articles here and I’ll get the ball rolling so you all can create static resources to shame VA into accountability.
“50-Count Indictment Leads to Indefinite Suspension at VA “
Susan McGuire Smith Fed Smith dot com, January 16, 2018
“This recent case illustrates how an agency can use the “crime exception” to expedite processing of an indefinite suspension in a situation where an employee is charged with criminal activity. (Henderson v Department Veterans Affairs (CAFC No. 2017-1071, 12/26/17)) The facts are taken from the appeals court decision sustaining the indefinite suspension.”
Mr. Henderson was a GS-13 Program Analyst for the VA in Atlanta when the federal grand jury indicted him on fifty counts of false statements in violation of 18 United States Code Section 1035. Two weeks later, the agency proposed to suspend Henderson indefinitely, invoked the crime exception to shorten the notice period, considered Henderson’s reply, and effected the suspension about one month after the criminal indictment was handed down. (Opinion pp. 1-6)
Henderson argued that his due process rights were violated by invoking the crime exception that he contended was not appropriate under the facts of his case, and by indefinitely suspending him based on the indictment. Not so, ruled the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). The federal court of appeals has now upheld the agency’s action and the MSPB decision.”
“Here’s how it went down.
As part of his responsibilities, Henderson ordered employees under his supervision to “close over 2700 unresolved authorized consults for medical care for veterans by falsely declaring the consults to have been completed or refused by the patients, when in truth and fact, as Henderson then well knew, the consults were still pending and unresolved, and the veteran patients were still waiting for the authorized medical consults.” (p. 3) These 2700 consults were thus closed out by Henderson’s direction during a 5-6 day period. The 50-count indictment stemmed from these actions.
These consults were a prerequisite for a veteran to obtain medical care from private sources as permitted under certain circumstances.
The agency noted in imposing the indefinite suspension that Henderson had been indicted and arrested for making false statements (50 times) involving health care matters; if convicted he would face five years/$250,000 per count; therefore, VA had “reasonable cause to believe” that Henderson had committed a crime for which he may be imprisoned and that it was not in VA’s best interest to leave him in a duty status pending the outcome of the criminal proceedings. (p. 3)
Henderson maintained that he was innocent of criminal wrongdoing, demanded documents from the VA, and asked that the suspension be stayed until the outcome of the criminal proceedings. In other words, continue him in a paid status. When the agency did not waver, Henderson took his appeal to the MSPB. The administrative judge concluded that the grand jury indictment provided sufficient basis for the agency to affect the suspension. Further, the VA “had established a nexus between the criminal charges and the efficiency of the service….[in that his] misconduct interfered with or adversely affected the agency’s mission.” (p. 4).”
Henderson v. VA (2017-1071)
Full Article at: https://www.fedsmith.com/2018/01/16/50-count-indictment-leads-indefinite-suspension-va/
Department of Justice Press Release–
“VA Employee Sentenced to Federal Prison for Falsifying the Medical Records of Hundreds of Veterans”
“AUGUSTA, GA — Cathedral Henderson, 51, was sentenced yesterday by United States District Court Judge J. Randal Hall, in Augusta, Georgia, to 27 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for falsifying the medical records of hundreds of veterans. After a week-long trial earlier this year, a jury convicted Henderson on all counts.
Evidence presented at trial and during sentencing revealed that Henderson, a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) employee and the former Chief of Non-VA Care Coordination at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center in Augusta, falsified the medical records of over 2,700 VA patients. Henderson intentionally terminated unresolved consults – medical appointments that had not been scheduled or completed – as “patient refused services or services provided.” Further, when confronted with the evidence of his crimes, Henderson lied to investigating agents about his actions.”
“United States Attorney Ed Tarver stated, “Our VA officials and employees are entrusted with the health and welfare of some of the most honorable and vulnerable in our nation – our veterans. This Defendant’s actions weakened our nation’s confidence in the agency empowered to care for its veterans. This U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to end corruption wherever it appears.”
Michael J. Missal, Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, said, “This guilty verdict came as a result of a collaborative effort between the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General. This VA employee held a position of trust, but elected to manipulate veterans’ medical records to give the false appearance that the number of unfulfilled consult appointments was lower than the actual backlog, putting veterans at risk.”
VA-OIG Special Agent in Charge Monty Stokes stated, “Our investigation held this VA employee accountable for his deliberate actions that delayed delivery of vital health care with false statements.” ”
Full release at: https://www.justice.gov/usao-sdga/pr/va-employee-sentenced-federal-prison-falsifying-medical-records-hundreds-veterans
They should have given him some real time. No doubt he ended up only having to serve 6 months home confinement with a ankle bracelet.
Seymore Klearly, what a bunch of BS!!!! So this one time, probably because the VA-OIG had no other choice, decided to make a deal, and be “part of this” in order to save face.
If the damn VA-OIG was serious about prosecuting assholes for “putting Veterans at risk” then there would have been murdering doctors, and the directors who let them do surgeries they were not qualified to perform, for the sole purpose of obtaining bonus money, also spending the majority of the rest of their lives behind bars. Instead of intimidating whistle blowers.
Same shit different day, the VA, and the OIG, lie, while Veterans die, at the hands of incompetent. 3rd world jackass gumball machine Dr.’s
I think the VA actively seeks these 3rd world Dr’s out, so they can hold it over their heads if they don’t tow the AFGE line. Do what we say or lose your pay, and be sent back to the shit hole you came from. Know what I mean?
I agree 100%.
“They should have given him some real time. No doubt he ended up only having to serve 6 months home confinement with a ankle bracelet.”
Good post Seymore, thank you.
You have to wonder what came first, the IG investigating, or him being caught and charged for some other reason, and the IG playing catch-up.
I say that because you have to wonder why this guy was charged, and so many others have not been charged.
If you read everything carefully, you see the VA invoked a “crime exception” to shorten the notice period for telling him he was going to be suspended. That suggests he was charged with a crime first, and then the VA got involved. If that is not the case, then why doesn’t the VA invoke this crime exception more often?
It also explains why the MSPB refused to overturn his suspension. They likely knew how bad it would look with evidence of a crime.
The language, “established a nexus between the criminal charges and the efficiency of the service” is also interesting as if they had some some claims examiner doing the investigation.
There is so much here that suggests the VA has all the authority they ever needed to deal with shitty employees. They just needed the will to use it.
All the totaled time, plus frustration, remembrances of such trauma, that this has and will cause to get these records clarified, if they ever can or will be? I can only imagine what my records look like.
With myself, it’s so bad, that every time somethings happens, PTSD symptoms flare up more, and more. Yet, I had the symptoms under control in the past.
With all that has been reported by Ben, you, and others, the VA should’ve already been in the spotlight, investigated, more charges filed, convictions with real time served, and new programs, services, breakthrough technologies offered to us (whether FDA approved or not), and any current med-service(s) evaluated to see if improvement are needed.
What I’m saying, is that the VA is one money guzzling machine, that mainly benefits those that operate and oversees it’s programs, facilities, and lets not forget the total amount of well deserved bonuses, promotions, and relocations for not doing their specified jobs and tasks.
Dirty fucking shit bags. A National disgrace that the MSM should be all over in reporting on the VA, because there are stories on a daily basis. The VA is like another pseudo-country inside the US. Really, think about it.
Thank you all for what you report, and the amount of time that it takes in doing so. I’m finding that I have to distance myself more and more, for peace of mind, and to keep the extreme anxiety in check. Always something to take away from focusing on your own recovery, on how the VA always throws their screw ups with almost everything, back into the lap of the Veteran, even though it wasn’t the Vets fault. A sick, and greedy way of practicing medicine.
@Dennis, ship me some of that Delta 9 THC under pressure, and sign me up for beta testing for efficacy of product. Each person reacts differently, and I’m already labeled, and have been a test subject. You have my permission to bill the VA for such services, make sure you keystone the price at least between 20k to 50k times what the price should be, or what you deem appropriate.
Off Topic – Understanding the Opioid Epidemic – 10pm tonight- Comcast WHYY Channel 12- Check your areas listings – Watch to see for any twisting of what really is happening.
And, just as I suspected that there wouldn’t be, there was no mention of the VA’s responsibility in the epidemic. Nothing new. And who the fuck are these Politicians reading Ben’s blog. I’m sure curious minds in their respected districts would like to know. Shit.
Blumenthal, a complete disgrace to all Veterans, lying about his service in Nam. And the idiots in CT put him in office … pathetic.
“Nurse says Denver Health fired her for being a Trump supporter”
by Rob Low, Fox News Denver 31, January 17, 2018
“DENVER — A former nurse at Denver Health Medical Center has filed a lawsuit against the hospital, claiming she was let go partly, she claims, because she supported Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential election.
Lizzy Matthews, 65, filed her federal lawsuit on Jan. 11, claiming employment discrimination.
It names Denver Health, Hospital Authority nursing manager Kelly Torres director of nursing acute Marc Fedo as defendants.”
At the center of her case is an incident from Sept. 10, 2016, when Matthews states she was tending to a patient whom she knew to be a former high-ranking employee at Denver Health.
In the legal complaint, Matthews says the patient was watching news about the upcoming presidential election on television and engaged her in conversation about who might win.
“Donald Trump was going to win the election and that she was praying for him, also,” Matthews said, according to the lawsuit.
She claims the patient stated, “Oh, no, I don’t want him to be.”
Three days later, on Sept. 13, Matthews says she received a call at home from Torres.
According to the lawsuit, Torres stated a patient complained about the election-related conversation.
Torres allegedly asked Matthews, “Did you ask [the patient] to read the Bible?”
Matthews responded, “No, I did not.”
Matthews states she was fired by Torres during the phone conversation because of her comment about Trump and because she wasn’t willing to work more hours as a part-time nurse.”
Full Article at: https://kdvr.com/2018/01/17/nurse-says-denver-health-fired-her-for-being-a-trump-supporter/
hey congress…taking a lot of incoming, many casualties… how bout some supporting fire… .
Dear Benjamin Krause,
At this Four Star Hospital, Surgeons are leaving instruments behind in a patient in August of 2013 [VA Director Linda Schwartz] and we now hear about it 4 years later.
Attorney Joel Faxon calls it “an incomprehensible level of incompetence.”
The Conn. Hospital was called out in an article By MARK HAYWARD,
New Hampshire Union Leader, July 25. 2017 11:54PM, “The neurosurgery department is overwhelmed. No way can two (surgeons) handle six New England states. They’re making concessions that aren’t good,” Amodeo-Vickery said this week. “We want to change the system.”
Sen. Blumenthal stated in December of 2015 to his staff we have “received allegations of reprehensible misconduct at West Haven that may have led to Mr. Greenough’s tragic death” and requested that Holiday investigate the death with the help of police.
It is a proven fact [01/30/2015 Benjamin Krause] that Yale and the Conn. VA doctors conducted experiments on veterans under the umbrella of National Association of Veterans’ Research and Education Foundations (NAVREF)—calling it “research.”
Benjamin Krause added, “That is my biggest concern. And given the rate at which veterans are complaining about treatment at West Haven VA, I am certainly concerned.”
Who is the Director there? Linda Schwartz, the outgoing head of Connecticut’s Department of Veterans Affairs 2001-2014… Governor Malloy announced that Schwartz’s deputy, Joseph Perkins acting commissioner…“Thomas J. Saadi was appointed Acting Commissioner of the Department of Veterans Affairs effective October 4, 2017.”
Obviously, we still have problems at the VA Hospitals which will result in large pay outs in all directions.
Just to be clear Don. The VA star system for grading VA facilities has nothing to do with the services it provides. It is about how well they do at obtaining bonuses.
Shocker of shockers today! I reported VA employees cancelling my appointment requests and forcing me into Choice Program without my informed consent and against my express wishes to do so to the VA OIG.
They have never called back before and their messaging system warns that they only investigate matters of a serious nature that i,paxt the safety of care, malfeasance, and so forth. They said they are launching an investigation. VA Roseburg has for over twenty four months steadfastly denied all requests for mental health care and keeps trying to game the Choice program. If these charges are substantiated this is a betrayal of the VA mission. Trust me, it is true.
I have no hope OIG will do shit but at least a whole lot of people are coming to my party now that VA washington, VA OIG, and VA Choice Program have all pledged they would investigate why Roseburg has locked me out given my eligibility and history. I am placing 30:1 odds that Roseburg will attempt to assign another PRF if they are told the have to serve me because they did this before. THEY HATE a man who is good friends with the senior reporter at the newspaper which coincidentally is now in the building across the street from the new VA clinic.
My hope is that they use my case as the excuse to go after the senior staff because they either did or they did not refuse service to an eligible vet. If they did wilfully refuse service there is no explanation that can make this legal. It is not. That is the sole reason I will play along with OIG.
This is good news Dennis. I don’t want to rain on your possibly victory, but did you ever use Choice after Roseburg referred you? If not, Roseburg might convince the IG that your case is not substantiated. They may claim that since you never used Choice, nothing was wasted. In fact, they may even claim that they are working very hard at finding you a provider to use through Choice, and you are just being impatient.
It may help to put all this in writing and try get it to the IG.
It might also help if all parties involved, Roseburg and the IG, know that you have reporter friends.
They might just do things by the book, and come up with believable excuses.
You should have taken the bet at 30:1 because it just gets better!
I AM EXTREMELY pissed at the moment. Remember before you judge what they say here, becauee it was meant to embarass and shame, that the crew who entered this into my record today is the crew just reported on in the New York Times at Roseburg Oregon.
Keep in mind that I am under no cat one PRF and I do take my reporter friend as my designated companion to my visits. She has been granted a medical power of attorney by me and has known me for years and has written three comllete stories about me so therefor knows my medical history better than anyone. Her first story of triumph over life adversity and the follow up tv story about it said I was an inpsiration. After the harassment of me by was printed by my friend the reporter suddenly everything changed again. But my friend the reporter HAS been there.
This means she was there to observe what VA claims happened and it is bullshit! I never fired any provider – they kept dumping me after that judge issued a restraining order agaisnt them. Furthermore, there is zero record EVER of ANYONE reporting verbal abuse by me because it is not my style to speak that way. I write bluntly of course but every physician has described me as soft spoken and at my request EVERY single office visit it is noted that I am compliant, polite, and non threatening. I request they put those words in and they did. Each doctor entered such things.
The reporter has NEVER witnessed me acting innapropriately, yet….. today VA Roseburg made this entry into my record on knowledge that VA D.C., OIG, and Choice Program are all now investigating.
Ask yourself this; if the allegations they make right here below are true then why was I not flagged again by DBC and why does this appear for the first time and only after the newpaper printed a story about all their lies and ONLY on the day OIG contacted me to say they are investigating Roseburg for denial of care. The only truth to this followig paragraph nowmin my medical record is that yes, I do bring a reporter to protect me from false charges. She goes with me to non VA care too because she is my friend and no non VA doc EVER has had a problem with this. Read what Roseburg wrote here that showed up today in my record tand then tell me that it is a bad idea to protect myself by having a reporter present!
“Type of Service/Procedure: Evaluation and Treatment Chief Complaint: Veteran is not comfortable with VA care. He has fired multiple providers and has harassed providers to the point they refuse to see him. He is verbally aggressive and sexually inappropiate. He brings reporters to his appointments. We have been unable to come to an understanding with the Veteran.”
There is no record of me asking for a change in providers except the first month or so years ago I asked for and was changed to a new PCP. Years ago and just one as is my right. Yes, they did try to negotiate with me to cease involving the press and I refused. Randi is my friend and i need somebody who can verify and protect me from these allegations. Now they make it clear that I forfeit services because of this – Choice will not pay wihtout a VA provider. After years of zero medical record entries, upon OIG initiating an investigation of them for refsinf service VA Roseburg suddenly now claims I act verbally aggressive and sexually innapropriate yet they failed to issue a PRF?
I now offer 1000:1 odds that they meet soon and cook up a PRF to attmept to bolster this. Make no mistake this is overt fraud by Roseburg VA and consider this carefully – even if fully substantiated VA is NEVER authorized to terminate care. A PRF if issued ONLY allows them to alter the time, place, and manner of delivery – they are required to offer the full range of services. There are twenty reasons this entry cannot be legal but my God these worms will not stop.
I am not suicidal over this but think about this too; they have sent the police to my house now on so called safety checks for suicide at least five times and I have been a guest on their MH ward three times, the last time with a GAF of 5 following them issuing a fabricated PRF which was exposed as fabricated in the press and which forced them to remove it but which triggered me to the point of self harm.
I share this deeply personal info to illustrate something; they are knowingly engaging in wrongful behaviour again that before triggered a suicidal response in a patient (me). I am stating flatly that this is criminal to do this to vets knowing full well what it leads to historically in at least some vets like me. This is gross malpractice on a facility level. I will not suicide but I will get really fucking stoned for a few days which is the only medicine I have now to deal with PTSD events like this. I can handle it and I will even put on my ULC minister robes tonight and meditate. Stoned meditating ministers can handle bullshit like this pretty easy so no worries but….
Ever wonder why VA doesn’t put a dent in the veteran suicide epidemic?
Dennis, rather than editing the above comment, I will reply here since it causes a separate email to be sent to readers.
I forgot to add…get a screen shot of that original secure message you sent to them asking for the appointment. The one in which they responded saying you were referred to Choice. You can provide that as evidence of the language you used to Roseburg, and the IG can see it was not aggressive.
Getting screen shots will prevent them disappearing, or Roseburg changing their responses without you knowing it.
Dennis, I hope you nail these corrupt, lying, bastards to a wall.
Dennis, does that entry in your records contain a time/date stamp? Regardless of whether it does or not, get a screen shot of it and save the image, then try and print it out if possible. If you can’t print it out, at least copy the text and print it.
Whatever you do, try and capture what you can showing a time/date stamp.
Is there any indication who made the entry in your records? I assume there would be logs of who accessed your record on a specific date and time.
Once you do get that screen shot, tell your friend tomorrow what has happened. Ask your friend if she would like to sit with you while you call the OIG to report harassment from them by falsifying your records. Call the IG and report exactly that. Hell, even tell the IG you are recording the call because of the harassment, and you want a record of what you are reporting to the IG.
As your friend if she would write an affidavit explaining her observation of you during previous VA appointments.
Ask the IG what they have done so far in investigating your complaint, particularly if they have contacted Roseburg. When was the last time you were contacted by Roseburg in person or by telephone? If I recall correctly, everything has been through secure messaging, and you have not been in telephone or physical contact with them for some time.
I think you can easily prove harassment and retaliation for reporting this to the IG, and their entry in your medical record is clear evidence of them trying to create excuses for what they have done.
Unfortunately for them, your friend can explain how you have acted in previous appointments. Your medical records can prove whether you have been seen by some of these other providers they claim you fired, and if you were sexually inappropriate or verbally aggressive, one would think they would have entered that in your treatment records at that time.
As the IG if there is any kind of case number, or a person who you can contact if further harassment occurs. Explain to them that Roseburg has called the cops on you in the past for harassment. You may even want to wonder out loud to the IG about calling the White House hotline.
Either way, it is infuriating when hacks do this, but don’t look at it as a set back as much as looking at it as Roseburg digging their grave deeper.
Hopefully the IG is serious about investigating this. I assume they are since Roseburg has already reacted to it.
As far as I can tell, irregardless of any charges they might allege, there is no provision in USC Title 82 for denying access to the full range of VA services. The exception that I know of is in the case of an incarcerated vet who then gets all care through that system.
They can charge me with rubbing boogers on the walls, flinging poop up the stairs, and whipping out my pecker and tossing it around like a lasso and yet here is absolutely no precedent I can find that authorizes them to teminate VA services.
The Choice Program said without an assigned VA provider that Choice does not work. The message I posted was part of the second Choice Program referal entry. The first one made not mention of any of this at all and was entered a few weeks ago after I signed myaelf up with the new online scheduling app. They cancelled the appointment and entered a big long Choice referal in my record. THis one they entered on top of that with these allegation was after I went to OIG and VA D.C., and the Choice administrator. So they entered these allegations within the body of a Choice Program referal!
These allegations show up NOWHERE else in my entire record – just inside the nody of the unwanted referal and only after I asked for an investigation into denial of services. Now if for some reason I feel like I need to defend myself then they have now entered accusation of verbal abuse and sexual miscoduct. Both of these require a VA employee to report the incident to VA police. Police are required to investigate.
No police have called me or spoken with me about abuse or sexual violations. So let us see whats left – the reporter friends. I told the senior reporter about this and sent her that snippet too. She is white hot angry. It took two years then an initiated investigation to enter this???
I told her years ago during one of the 23 interviews I gave her as she bird dogged VA and finally printed page upon page of deception, intimidation, and misconduct by the people who wrote this in my record yesterday, that I knew by going public they would never allow me to get care again because once nobody is looking there is no stopping them from doing whatever they want. My reporter friend is VERY well known. She broke the story in Oregon about the children services division (CSD) and the rampant neglect, abuse, and horrors that they perpetrated.
Her story about that agency, also who hides behind so called patient anonymity to hide malfeasance, was singularly reaponsible for firing nearly all of them and in fact her article instilled such rage at the agency that they actually changed the agency name. It is now Adult and Human Services because CSD became synonymous wih “Nazi”.
Now, every doctor who needs a VA record to treat me will be informed that I am an abusive sex offender. VA destroys veterans.
Dennis, if I understand you correctly, they added the allegations to the referral AFTER they had already sent the referral to you?
If so, hopefully you have proof. If they did that, it may be a case of Employee X adding that allegation after Employee Z was told to issue the referral. Employee X makes the change and adds the allegation, but Employee Z takes the blame because they issued the referral.
It would be interesting to see since this has been changed if Choice has been contacted by Roseburg for any reason. In trying to cover their ass, I wonder if they would try get Choice to show they have a referral, so it looks like Roseburg was actively trying to help you. If you find that is the case, it would help to know what PCP requested the referral…and if you have ever heard of them.
I suspect there is all kinds of ass covering going on there, and I would not be surprised at all if all kinds of falsified paperwork showed up to try justify what they are doing.
Have you called the White House hotline? I’ve always thought it helps the VA do their jobs when incoming is maximized at the target.
Not only did they add a brand new Choice authorization right on top in the record of the three day old one, this time in the section that describes symptoms to be treated (like MDD, PTSD and so forth) with each containing a diagnostice code is where they put these allegations! They inserted the allegations into VA Form 10-0386. Here is how it is now worded:
“Type of Service/Procedure: Evaluation and Treatment Chief Complaint: Veteran is not comfortable with VA care. He has fired multiple providers and has harassed providers to the point they refuse to see him. He is verbally aggressive and sexually inappropiate. He brings reporters to his appointments. We have been unable to come to an understanding with the Veteran.”
Here is the exact same section of the exact same form but three days before and prior to VA national hotline becoming involved. I did not authorize this one either but do you notice a teensy weensy difference here?
“Type of Service/Procedure: PRIMARY CARE Provisional Diagnosis: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Chronic(ICD-10-CM F43.12) Primary Care Six Month SEOC 1.1.1”
Both the same form but the top was generated ree days after the bottom one and ONLY after VA Roseburg was contacted by VA national hotline. What the hell hapened in three days to warrant such a charge hidden inside a Choice Program referral that I did not authorize???
Dennis, did you call the IG back and tell them you have printed evidence proving they are harassing and retaliating against you for contacting the IG?
On their online form I ammended the complaint to include the reference of the brand new authorization with the allegations. VA likely won’t do shit brother. I have been tossed and to their credit they told the truth partly – he brings the press with him…. My friend is who she is but NOBODY “brings” her anywhere. She goes where America says it is ok to go, and America garauntees me the First Ammendmet Choice of who I pick for my friends. Good sense dictated I pick a damn good note taker with a WHOLE lot of credibility just in case some random person accuses me of sexual impropriety or abuse. It just seemed like a good idea for my friend to be there in the unlikely event I was ever falsely accused of such things….
Good friends Dennis. I hope you keep us updated.
“New Aurora VA hospital won’t serve as many as old hospital”
by Joe St. George Fox 31 News, January 17, 2018
“The revelation came during a House hearing by the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs over the hospital, which is $1 billion over budget and years behind schedule.
Rep. Mike Coffman said Tuesday the hospital will finally open in August.
The new Aurora facility will have fewer primary examination rooms, fewer surgical beds, fewer psychiatric beds, no post-traumatic stress disorder exam facility, and fewer Patient Aligned Care Teams, who are medical professionals charged with assisting vets.
All of this is despite the fact the new hospital is double the square footage of the current facility in Denver.
It was also revealed the old Denver VA hospital will have to stay open for three to five years based off estimates by Committee Chairman Phil Roe.”
The House Hearing today on the Money Pit.
Guess they now want to tear it down and start over! They are hopeful they will be better prepared to go at least $3 to $4 billion over budget this time. You may want to skip ahead to minute 17 34 seconds. Also note they are now stating that it is a fact that the hospital is officially now currently more than $2 Billion over budget. Also it is going to take a lot more money to see it to completion.
After watching just part of the Hearing it is very clear they are shooting for $3 Billion over budget for the money pit.
These asswipes are reading scripts. They’re actors. They also aren’t going to tell the full truth.
FUCK THE VA!
FUCK “Shithead Shulkin”!
As far as I’m concerned, this “money pit” is making a number of people very wealthy. An audit needs to be done to find out WHO’s putting monies in their pockets!
When you watch it is very clear all lines have been rehearsed and being read from a script. All questions and all answers are fully scripted.
The scripts will be tossed in the circular file after It’s over and forgotten, That’s show Biz…..How can you build a new hospital and leave out seven care teams, It should have been built to handle a extra seven, And I don’t call it incompetence It was done so someone down the road would make another bundle of cash.
It took almost 20 min. to get started must have had a little rehearsal time in there…LOL
Best post of the day!!!! Pictures and all!
Any bets on whether some VA Spokeshack is trying to spin this as, “well, the unknown medical device wasn’t rusty when we immediately performed the surgery…so, we REALLY care for veterans.”
Some article I read earlier on this reported that the surgery performed that resulted in the scalpel being left in was partially robotically assisted. I’m surprised Cashour hasn’t blamed the robot for leaving it behind.
Regarding the lack of accountability at VA, particularly with incompetent doctors, look at what the Navy is doing about those in charge when they screw up.
It puts it into perspective.
In June, a US Navy ship hit another near Japan killing seven sailors. In August, another ship hit an oil tanker killing another 10. By November, the Navy investigated and reported their version of events, and who might be responsible. Now as of today, the Navy has announced homicide charges against the 2 ship commanders, as well as charges for others involved.
The only difference I see is the VA kills slower. Sometimes.
Some times the VA kills even faster than the Navy.
Also worth mentioning that one of the ships is the USS John McCain. Name after Lame brain McCain who should have been charged for the same charges while he was in service. Due to the deaths he caused play games with his aircraft.
Awwwww, but poor Shulkin is trying his best. He has a VISION! But that vision doesn’t include seeing the pain, suffering and death caused by incompetent VA doctors after years of knowingly hiring quacks. How could he see a scalpel left in a vet for 4 years? How could he do anything about a vet complaining about pain and being ignored for 4 years? How could Shulkin do anything about such fucking incompetence that no xray would be taken of a veteran in pain after surgery for 4 fucking years?
Luckily that scalpel didn’t spin around like a friggin Samurai blender during his MRI.
Worlds best medical care? Better than that offered in the community?
Yeah, Shulkin should not be responsible according to some. And if blame can’t be avoided? Hey! Just blame bad policy, lack of policy or too much policy.
As for the Wiki site Ben, I am happy to hear you say it already exists on your own platform. Much better to control your own content. As for publishing links, I would think the more links are published, the better the exposure this site would get.
I have LOTS to contribute over VA doctor credentials with links and screen shots. If you have a separate forum or chat capability, it would help to have that as well so we could discuss laying out the site.
Until veterans are in charge, nothing will change!!
Here’s your tax dollars at work, Good old Dick Cheney’s company Halliburton…
Americans, you’re the perfect sheeple a fascist government can dream of!
This one will make your head spin and It’s only ten min. long, And for u politicians reading this blog, You knew this was going on and never said a word and I bet your stocks went through the roof, You fucking Thieves. And Fuck you to VA you Lying Ass bastards.
Those people who did the dirt for Haliburton are working for xpo logistics. DOD chose another logistics company in light of many fraudulent activities of XPO.
Three articles out yesterday and posted today.
From: “military.com” via “Stars and Stripes”
By: Nikki Wentling.
Dated: 16 Jan. 2018
“Harsh Response to VA Decision Not to Study Medical Marijuana for PTSD”
These articles go together in response to dems not following the laws set down by Congress, the President and the Supreme Court of America!
From: “The Daily Caller”
By: Justin Caruso – “Media Reporter”
Dated; 09:34 pm 01/16/2018
“It’s Just Unbelievable: Jeff Sessions Lays Down The Law With Tucker (Video)”
From: “The Daily Caller News Foundation/Politics”
By; Robert Donachie
“Capital Hillary and Health Care Reporter”
“Dems Think 800,000 Illegal Immigrants Are Worth Forcing Active Military to Go Without Pay!”
The two main culprits involved in this scandal are “Chucky Schumer and Nancy Pelosi!” It’s time for them to be made examples of in light of NOT following the law!
It’s also being reported: ICE Agents, in Massachusetts, were/are being thwarted by a low level elected official recently, when they were going to make a raid against MANY illegal immigrants involved in criminal activities!
Here’s a fact! The Supreme Court, during the Obama administration, declared “unanimously” “DACA was unconstitutional!” That “9th Circuit Court liberal judge IS definitely in violation of federal law. By blocking President Trump from ending DACA, he has set himself up against the DOJ!
Furthermore, The GAO concurred recently, the “chain migration and lottery” DOES allow criminal elements to enter our Republic![paraphrasing]!
IF Pelosi and Schumer get their way, it’s going to piss off tens of millions of taxpayers, veterans and active duty military personnel. Not to mention the Park Services personnel, Border Patrol agents and other government employees!
I hope they’re ready for the backlash they will cause!
California / New California
Sanctuary cities made out of tents and tarps.
Where is the Main Stream Media’s reporting on this!!!
If you want to see the Video and do not have a facebook account just click “Not Now” on the flash screen that pops up to sign in for facebook. You can then see the video. It is truly un-fricken-believable that this is going on in America.
Also note that this is Nancy Pelosi district that she represents. How bad can things get there.
Have you seen the video and articles out from the Director of Department Homeland Security? She wants permission from DOJ [Sessions] to Start arresting elected and appointed officials harboring illegal immigrants? Especially those reprobates in sanctuary cities [and maybe even sanctuary states]. She even cites the “immigration law” which can be used!
One can only hope!
Yep, she was on Fox News this morning, saying she’s tired of the bullshit from these “Shitholes”! [Hey, namnibor, that works out great!]
You can also get “California/New California” article with video from “the political insider”!
Californians in the rural areas are waking up!
It may not work. Yet they seem to be wanting to do it right!
To help shame the VA into accountability and possibly help point more people here, I plan to soon test the waters and maybe do a facebook lite with aggressive security or something, but am willing to go way outside my comfort zone to help focus the disinfecting qualities of VA kryptonite called accountability.
As for the gross medical error and scalpel…w h a t the f u c k VA?!!!!!!!! YOU think your employees need to be MORE SAFE from we Vets? HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!
(even my cat is laughing…HAHAHAHAHA)
Don’t you just love all the smoke and mirrors being used by the VA to put Veterans in a bad light in the public mind right now?
While they are depriving Veterans of even basic competent Health Care they are trying to make Veterans look bad.
“Veterans’ safety a concern at facilities across the country”
Report: Dept. of Veterans Affairs needs to review, revise risk management policy
By Jenna Zibton – Anchor Posted: 4:00 AM, January 17, 2018
“”The 9 million veterans that the VA serves every year have been through a lot. Many of them have mental challenges. Many of them have substance abuse problems and another thing we hear from VA is these individuals many of them have been taught how to use firearms and they’re comfortable with firearms so they pose an additional kind of challenge,” said Lori Rectanus, U.S. Government Accountability Office.”
Full Article at: https://www.wsls.com/news/veterans-safety-a-concern-at-facilities-across-the-country
What utter Bullshit!
Sorry but they have it all wrong and it is us Veterans who need protection from the VA Health Care System. Not them needing protection from us!
Every wonder how many thousands of Veterans are suffering or dying each year due to the Veterans Administration failing to follow the law? Or their failure to follow US codes of regulations?
They truly contribute to the stress syndrome into Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.
*Let me correct that number it is definitely not in the Thousands it is clearly in the 10s to 100nd of Thousands, if not Millions.*
What is the Claims Back log now and how many appeals are still waiting for decisions? How many Veterans are not receiving proper medical care at this point with the VA being only offered a visit to a nurse and not a Doctor? How many Veterans are committing suicide each day? How many Veterans are suffering from drug addiction brought on by the prescribing practices of the VA Prescribing drugs instead of treating the Veterans medical issue?
Yaa, its is defiantly in the 10s 0f Millions of Veterans that are currently suffering or dying each year due to the Veterans Administration failing to follow the law and their failure to follow US codes of Federal regulations.
If you are on Twitter, send the above news story to them letting them know what a disgusting smear of veterans her comments are.
Include the news station at: @WSLS.
Make sure to use the qualifier word of “SHITHOLE”, which should grab more attentive audience…unless of course, Google and FB & like media platforms have already scrubbed the term: “SHITHOLE”.
Matter-in-fact, I suggest all Vets use “SHITHOLE” in front of or behind when referring to any VA/VAMC/VHA in a sentence in written or oral form.
Example#1: “I have to go the shithole VA today to pick-up my meds.”
Ex #2: “I dropped the wife & kids off at the shithole” (same difference).
#VASCANDAL was one of the hashtags that caught my suspicion long ago that was scrubbed.
Personally I don’t follow any of the twits on Twitter nor do I do FB.
But any one who does I hope will do it.
Its actually surprising who is on Twitter, and how quickly you can get a response depending on what you are sending.
The interesting thing is how fast some in the media (or others) will respond to something sent to them.
This isn’t to say all will respond, but you can bet its been received by someone.
Not knocking Twitter but it just ain’t my kind of thing. Also have had no problems with using Email when contacting the Media. They always give a quick response. I also can state more in an email ratter than in a twit.
Besides if I did use twitter I would worry about looking like some kind of Twit wit.
Now they need to figure out how to RECOVER this money. Use RICO statutes and get the money back……
Sorry posted this in the wrong place…
The key of course Ben that seems to be essential to businesses or concerns that rely on internet traffic is the old tried and true concept of diversification.
Facebook is notorious for shutting down websites that promote marijuanna businesses. The folks whose legitimate state businesses relied upon internet exposure for advertising complain bitterly that their sometimes years of promoting their Facebook page is seemingly lost. They should never have relied on single source promotion.
The trick of course if NEVER to rely on single source resouces. Back in my working days the UPS drivers went on strike and our company’s dozens or hundreds of UPS shipments of spare parts virtually ceased because we had not set up any oher substantial service to handle this stuff. We changed overnight and from then on UPS only handled an equal portion of our freight compared to three oher shipping services. UPS taught us about unions and relying upon them. The unions taught UPS employees that standing up for wages resulted in their customer base forever diminished and trust eroded completely. It was a catastrophy for them, both employees and owners.
On the internet as I often mention I post on youtube. Youtube breaks down the views of videos on a per view basis.Going into analytics you can see the demographics (age, sex, geographic region) of the viewers. You can see precisely how much time of each video is watched on average, and you can even see precisely from which website they clicked to find your videos. I get about 10% of my views from Mexico for example and interestingly Mexian views watch an average of three times longer than US viewer do. So I opened my video up to “community translation” and youtune handles the work of accepting translations fromthe community. I also close caption my videos.
This is just one example, but, if a business like yours began posting short videos on your own channel with you simply speaking the stuff that you otherwise post then that channel easily can be set up to hook into your site. Furthermore when you review analytics you will see whom is watching and from where. Then very easily you yourself can go to the sites that users clicked through from and add content at that site to encourage more. It might be just a post from you but again it starts the process of diversification. Just remember the BBC 5 rules for a video – a close up of the hands, a close up of the face, a shot from over the shoulder, a wide angle shot, and then the specialty featured shot. Keep the camera still and the angles consistent and your vids will look great AND hold attention – no static face only speaking stuff if you wish maximum viewing.
Vimeo is also a video sight and has much less restricted copyright practices. This means if yiu want to jazz up your video with some music and the music is older than about 1972 then no problem.
Facebook of course is yet another diversification step that can easily lead back to your blog site and point to your youtube site. I put massive effort into my Facebook page about refining marijuanna extracts and update endlessly and promoted it. I found out that at best Facebook users at best constituted less than 6% of total views for any video placed there. Yet, one single non-facebook website that ranks pretty low but features my own youtube videos accounts for up to 50% of the views on my site. Google click throughs account for less than 2% of views. (Google and Youtube are one and the same). This info lets me know how to allocate my time in promoting my site.
The nice thing about youtube Ben, is that youtube will put up a list of suggested videos based on a viewers habits. Instead of relying upon a viewer to type the right search term to find your sight, youtube has a prediction engine which predicts what any given viewer might next enjoy viewing. This accounts for up to 37% of my views. Remember, youtube allows you to promote anything you want in your videos so within the video AND at the begining of the comments section simply hang out your shingle. Tell who you are and what you can do for people and BE ENTERTAINING. Keep all videos less than three minutes if you can because analytics on even my vids with now thousand of views and nearly all thumbs up reviews are rarely watched more than about three minutes. Most are twelve minutes long on my channel which documents in detail how to refine pure Delta 9 THC out of marijuanna extracts.
You have dynamite content and transitioning it to video and facebook takes a bit but once you get the workflow down it is pretty easy. Once your youtube channel reaches 10,000 views (mine gets that every 28 days at least) you can choose then to monetize which of course is through Google adwords. I do not monetize but am set up for it. It takes many more thousands of views to really make it worthwhile and you get paid when a user clicks on an ad posted next to your video. I suggest you monetize it. You will end up with maybe enough for a cup of coffee BUT logically Google/Youtube is going to suggest videos that are monetized through them much more often than ones that are not because they themselves get paid when a user purchases because of an adwords click through.
So you see my point I think. You have enormous luxury insofar as VA provides continuous bizarre and inferesting content in the form of corruption stories that are bizarre, full of gore like scalples left in patients, and yes – VA OIG chiefs in washington DC caught serial masterbating in the glass room. We giggle at this stuff but a well thought out video placed by you showcasing such a thing might seem distastful but could go viral overnight on youtube whereas on your site it has no real hope of ever going viral because the site name itself really limits the audience to a very finite group.
Last point: There are hundreds of thousands of stories from folks on this sight worthy all by themselves of taking down certain VA facilities, policies, and people but it is unlikely the audience would ever extend beyond VA trolls and us few vets who are regulars so no momentum ever really builds. If however you invite video to be sent to you from the BILLIONS of handheld devices now being packed in every hallway in America and ask for any videos demonstrating VA neglect, abuse, or malfeasance then you can turn the dogs on themselves. Just think of the number of “good” VA folks that would flood you with videos if they knew they would be anonymous and that their video would rat out those they despised. Any video capturing gore, beatings, or old folks being abused could very easily go viral and as far as I know there is no law against posting videos sent to you – even if those videos were taken in a place forbidding such things. THIS is the real power of the internet.
One more thing. I only post via my cracked ipad. Your site frustrates me at times to the point I have thrown my iPad. Your site is not iPad friendly. What I mean is that my iPad whenusing your sight will often “jump” one of your main menu links right down under my thumb as I am typing which then clicks throught to the link that I had no intnention of pressing and it takes a while to backup and find my typing again. This happens nearly every post and I do not know the technical fix but my hunch is that your site could be made to offer the same content but formatted for iPad to avoid this faux pax. It is not a defect but in these days generally most webistes need to offer formatting for up to four styles of viewership.
I get the same thing on Android Dennis. I accidentally click through to the Facebook or Twitter links, but going back, I lose the entire comment typed out.
Have you tried changing font size?
I wholeheartedly agree with everything you said Dennis. Very good points on human nature and the internet.
Also a very good point on video, and who you might get submissions from. I could see some good people taking video of the bad out of disgust. And the fear created by how the VA treats whistle blowers.
The ultimate bonus? Every VA employee being paranoid about having their incompetence exposed. Eventually, that would become self correcting.
Last week I threw my hands in the air cause I,m tired of this whole VA situation/clusterfuk. My coffee doesn’t quite taste right in the morning now, so I breezed by here this morning and liked what I read. It’s good to see your trying to breath some new life into your website Ben. SO, I’m back on board and hope I can contribute something useful here. Slap on a 4 barrel carb, shine up the mag’s and hang a tree on the mirror and your good to go Ben!
Google , which is government sponsored anyway , would have to scrub DOJ indictments, in which I believe is the nexus where you see the declination of DOJs unwillingness to prosecute bad actors.
Going to every districts US Attorneys website and searching Veterans Affairs will get some information, but creating FOIA trails allows you to get data regarding location of documents that have time stamped algorithms.
I am collecting names, dates times.
The gravy of who, what and when.
Veterans should collect the who , what and when, so there is a collective database of VA fuckbots who we can warn our fellow veterans about locally in their communities.
Hailing from that area, having a cousin in a pretty prominent position there at WH VAMC, and having never set foot in the place- I now know to steer VERY clear!!
Though this story wouldve broke, I always find it enlightening to see you have a serious jumpstart on stuff Ben! Said Surgeon, and VA are going to take a MASSIVE hit on this brother!! Such an act is so deplorable I can’t even fathom such negligent behaviour! This is akin to the stupid commercial of the guy with the iPhone left in his abdomen and Siri going off – except this is Real Life!! SMH!
As to you post article commentary, you may not remember me, but brother do i have some stories for you!! Let’s just say there is no doubt in my military mind such Congressman, VA Execs, and idiots on the Hill stay tuned to this channel for serious gouge buddy!! That stupid ass kissing, lying, Blumenthal included! That State is so jacked up people should truly overthrow that POS Gov up There! I’m blessed to have gotten out of there long ago! Can’t wait to see how the hordes try covering this horseshit up!
Stand by for an email of my own Ben. I have enough personal inside info of my own to light some serious fires within the establishment my friend! I’m quite sure you’ve met Sec Shulkin and see his heart is in the right place? It’s just these ridiculous buffoons located (and often hidden) around the US who give this guy black eyes that never heal. This negligent story is just one of hundreds of reasons why VA gets such a tarnished reputation! I can’t wait to see who this POS Phsycian is, so he can be dragged thru the streets like medieval times! Keep up the great work Ben! Your readers at EVERY level of democracy are with you!
Oohrah & Semper Fi
Gunny, perhaps I am missing what is going on behind the scenes, but I doubt it.
I will be the first to admit that any VA in the country has a mix of very good and competent nurses and doctors, along with a bigger mix of shockingly incompetent nurses and doctors who shouldn’t be teaching CPR.
This started with the VA looking at the bottom line, and knowingly hiring the cheapest they could get. That is why a doctor with a revoked license does 4 brain surgeries at a VA in Iowa and kills a vet. That is why plastic covering a catheter is inserted into a veterans leg resulting in amputation. That is why a veteran is left in pain for 4 years with a scalpel poking his ass because nobody is competent enough to request diagnostic xrays.
My point is, Shulkin is now aware of those that have been hired at VA hospitals for years may not be competent. What has he done about it other than announce a review and bury the story?
How hard is it to order every VAMC director to report up through the VISN whether his nurses and doctors are competent and properly credentialed? Shouldn’t take more than 2 weeks right? Then Shulkin could get some great press announcing his plan to deal with the mess he finds.
I suspect he knows full well what a mess he would find. He’s been around the VA long enough to know. I suspect he knows entire hospitals would have to severely curtail appointments until the VA hired enough competent staff to handle appointments without leaving treats in the bodies of vets. Well, except for those associated with universities and double dipping from the VA. The alternative would be Shulkin begging Congress for more Choice funding every other week until enough competent providers were hired.
In my own research, I am finding VA doctors that are competent are hired at larger VAs like Denver because of the affiliation with the University of Colorado. In fact, there are so many affiliated with the university, its difficult to find who is paying who, and where the care is provided. I am finding those with less than stellar credentials are shuffled off to smaller VAs with no university affiliation or reputation to sully. I am finding those who shouldn’t be in medicine at all are shuffled further down the chain to CBOCs. Who would question a VA doctor running a CBOC in a rural community? A doctor just wanting to give back, right?
Shulkin needs to face up to what happens when the law is ignored and what results from years of hiring incompetent providers. And deal with it as if his own family would be treated by who works at the VA.
This was a VERY well written and articulated response!
There comes a time in a man’s life when others can truly impact what another thinks and believes. I most definetely agree w your comments here and actually applaud you for the manner which you convey them. I’ve often noticed what some would consider “Angry Young Men” verbally assaulting others over ones comments, or the infamous “Online Challenge” to a fight. Both of which are entirely against what I believe in at my age and profession (sans what I was capable of during OIF II of course) lol.
Incidentally, I’ve recently experienced some extremely troubling and disheartening actions during my “Stay” at a Residential Program at a certain VAMC which was “supposedly” ranked at the top. By whom I don’t know, and would truly love to find out! Though they’ve (VA) moved a bit forward in “some” areas, I do concur there is MUCH more to be done across the board. I suppose just being a “Nice Guy” holds as much water as a sock making coffee in the field.
Thank you for providing me with some very valid thoughts and points my friend. Wishing you all the best for 2018.
Thanks for the response Gunny.
In dealing with the VA, I see nothing wrong with being a nice guy. I also see nothing wrong with delivering a serious correction if the nice guy is ignored. The correction may help the next veteran who may not have the ability to correct bad behavior towards nice guys.
More than likely a Yale resident and will disagree being a bad hospital. As wrote earlier, it’s a great hospital and wish still there
“VA hospital in Aurora gets August 11 opening date as thorny congressional hearing looms Wednesday”
Veterans Affairs panel expected to raise concerns about unfinished tasks and projected lack of staffing The Post reported last week
The Denver Post
By Mark K. Matthews January 16, 2018
“WASHINGTON — After years of delays, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs plans to open a new hospital in Aurora on Aug. 11 — although Tuesday’s announcement is unlikely to spare the agency from criticism when several of its top officials appear Wednesday before Congress to talk about the troubled project.
The unfinished hospital already is long overdue and $1 billion over budget, and, according to documents obtained last week by The Denver Post, there’s plenty of work left to do before it can treat patients.
Hundreds of tasks remain unfinished — such as replacing weak walls that can’t hold mounted X-ray machines — and it’s unlikely the VA will be able to hire enough workers to fully staff the hospital when it opens, which could cause a reduction in services.”
“The project’s expected price tag will be $1.7 billion for construction and about $340 million to outfit the facility with furniture and medical equipment.”
Full Article at: https://www.denverpost.com/2018/01/16/va-hospital-aurora-gets-august-11-opening-date/
Guess Shulkin hadn’t been informed that the new hospital didn’t automatically staff itself and come with new staff enclosed.
Guess it is time for Shulkin to break out his Visa pad and start issuing another 1,000 visas to people who have bought bachelor degree certificates in those shithole counties to staff the place.
I remember posting a comment on another one of Ben’s past blogs about this issue. It’s concerned “two hospitals built” around the Dallas/Ft. Worth area about two or three years ago.
In the article, the author uses the Aurora Colorado Money Pit as an example of how not to build hospitals.
The article’s main objective was to, in my opinion, to chastise the VA. Their two hospitals “…were built under cost…” and “…were finished under schedule!”
Maybe it’s time for Congress, both houses, to try a different approach to the ongoing corruption, waste, fraud and abuse permeating within the Veterans Administration! Maybe it’s time to “follow the money!”
Maybe it’s time to shut down the VA healthcare for now. Maybe it’s time for Shulkin to be FIRED and ALL of his subordinates to also be FIRED!
That GAO report, saying VA employees are NOT being kept safe enough, that was put out needs to be thrown in the trash. How about the veterans/patients NOT being kept safe due to incompetent healthcare?!
One statement made by the attorney helping that vet who has a scalpel left inside says it plain. He said, [paraphrasing], President Trump is supposed to be a friend of veterans!
Where’s POTUS’s commitment he made to “…clean up the VA?” Shulkin, and his subordinates, ain’t doing anything but making matters worse!
I hope Ben’s right on people in Washington are keeping up with what’s transpiring within the corrupt VA! I also hope they do something about that slush fund called the “Choice Program”!
Choice can never work paying so many to schedule appointments and red tape. Then have to pay the companies they overpaid to process invoices. No business could work with this set up, need to make part of Medicare
If the new Aurora VA Hospital is like any other government project in Colorado, they had many shut downs and delays, because every time ICE would show up, contractors were given a heads up, warning all their illegal workers to stay home. I seen this first hand on many government installations, where contracts were awarded, all of which are supposed to pay a prevailing wage, but instead, illegals were used and that money was pocketed, or skimmed. Now imagine a project as big as this one. Corruption at every level within the government, especially where projects run in the hundreds of millions into billions of dollars.
We had/have the same problem down here in Florida at the new [over priced and still not completed] VHA hospital at Lake Nona.
I remember channel 9 having a story where ICE found illegal immigrants hiding in the “duct work” and other unfinished places!
The wife and I laughed hard on this!
When I was still able to work, I was a subcontractor on every major military installation here in Colorado. I remember all to well seeing them hide, contractors and superintendents closing jobs, delaying projects, and they were always given a heads up. Makes me sick all the talk of the dreamers, amnesty, gaming the system, while the powers that be encourage it. I’m still waiting on President Trumps promise, I know he was left a mess at every level, but swift action on total reform needs to take place!
Indeed, I hope that you’re correct. But I’m convinced that this President has no intention of helping Veterans. Starting with Shulkin and the elimination of TDIU in his budget if you’re collecting Social Security.
Everything else is smoke and mirrors.
I hear ya. In 2014 I became unable to work because of my service connected disabilities. I was given a 70% rating in 2015-2016, even though I had been fighting them since 2008. I applied for SSD, but was denied, even though I had paid in since 1975. I was told they go back 6 years and in those 6 years they went back, the taxes I paid in during that time, disqualified me, despite all the same evidence of my illnesses, etc. I applied for TDIU in 2016. Its possible with this new legislation, I could suffer from double jeopardy, having a 40%, 30%, two 10%, and 4 secondary ratings at 0%, those for secondaries which they have totally screwed me on, our my worst disabilities. Having no disabilities rated at 60%, this new law may do away with those of us at 70% who qualified. On top all of that, I was placed into veterans choice, chose my doctor, they scheduled my treatments, which I had 1, then they never paid, causing the doctor to cancel all future treatments. So now I set, having sold everything that it took me a lifetime to build, declining health daily, and being screwed, time and time again. They wonder why we lose hope and faith in a system that was built to destroy us, at every level!
Bryce…..For SSD it used to be 6 years but in 2004 or 2005 they changed it to what you made in your lifetime I would reapply if I were You.
And I forgot to add SSD they have to give you back pay all the way back to the last day you worked they won’t tell you that and will try to screw you over but it happened to a neighbor of mine and he got a 19,000 dollar backpay check….He must have gotten a honest new employee …..Hope it works out for you…
Denver is booming, so much building no idea how keeping up. Since they made a stupid agreement with builder, sure paid enough for legal help. On the other 40 major building sites? 2% unemployment I’m sure plenty of crap going on. Denver is a mess, they let the decorator and architect tell the contractor what to do. If have construction experience those are the first people to get out, they don’t care about cost. They care about putting in portfolios how gorgeous they are.
Weak walls that will not hold wall mounted xray machines. How the hell did the wall ever get built without knowing what the load would be? Lack of vision?
I predict there will be hundreds of little problems with this money pit being discovered over the next 10 years. Leaky pipes. Vets trapped in elevators for days. Electrical not working. HVAC systems falling apart. Xrays machines falling on veterans with implanted surgical tools.
I bet the rats and roaches have already taken up residence.
There is a list of over 300 things that need to be repaired or corrected already and that is just one of the contractors list of things that need to be corrected.
From the Denver Post Article —
“Kiewit-Turner plans to finish some of this work — about 75 items — by May, but an additional 300 items are left on the construction to-do list that must be completed by a contractor that has yet to be selected.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had “planned to depart the construction site (in January) but now will continue managing construction through at least June,” according to the four-page congressional document.”
Also the new PTSD Building has not even began construction yet. No doubt that will be an additional $300 to $400 Million needed to complete the new Hospital. Also congress will still have to give them the money to complete the new Building.
If Congress doesn’t then the VA will be keeping the old hospital open for more than the 3 years it now plans to continue spending nearly $500 million it cost to keep the old hospital open.
Again from the Denver Post Article —
“PTSD rehab work to remain at old hospital”
“Notably, a PTSD rehabilitation facility and seven patient-care teams will remain at the Denver hospital for at least three years, according to the congressional document.
That’s for two reasons: A planned PTSD building at the new campus was nixed earlier because of the project’s escalating cost, and there’s not enough space at the new hospital to house the seven primary-care teams.
The new (VA medical center) has 34 primary care exam rooms compared to 60 at the existing (VA medical center), and it cannot accommodate seven existing (patient care) teams serving 8,500 veterans,” according to the House document.
The three-year timeline comes from the expectation that the VA ultimately will build another building on the new campus.
Fiotes, of the VA, acknowledged as much.
“VA plans to keep the existing hospital in service until the PTSD building can be completed at the new campus,” she wrote. “Additionally, seven Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACT) will remain at the current facility to serve veterans until VA conducts further analysis on how to optimize their impact for local area care based on where those PACT teams can continue to function.””
Source: “Overdue and $1 billion over budget, Aurora VA hospital is still incomplete and will likely be understaffed, document says The $1.7 billion facility has a to-do list hundreds of items long, according to document obtained by The Denver Post”
By Mark K. Matthews
January 15, 2018
Just great. I can see the PTSD treatment deteriorating to that of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Out of sight, out of mind and no supervision.
I can also predict a new excuse being used. “Well, yes we scheduled Private Parts for an exam, but it was at the old facility. He must have gone to the new facility, so we marked him as a no-show. Don’t worry, we can get him back in right away in 9 months.”
It is all to protect the new staff at the new hospital. Wouldn’t want to have them have deal with Veterans with real problems.
Mental health is God Awful in Denver spitting will make even worse and never mind the pharmacy and other crap will need to travel
Not lucky under staffed? Guaranteed to be under staffed, they are now paying contract doctors with top pay and food and lodging daily allowance around $250 per day. Add that up and tell me how can’t hire?
Don’t forget about the geological survey the VA pencil-whipped for bonus reasons, which actually revealed not only known fatal fault lines, but also a reawakening cauldron volcano…hence, the black hole needs more sacrifices/feeding.
And will still need to keep the old hospital open because they did not figure the necessary space for programs like PTSD Rehab, think would think important? It will cost more to keep open than adding 2 floors on entire hospital. Denver was able to do some easy fixes to raise to a 2 Star hospital, because people know a rating system exists. If not would be less because the doctors suck, they cannot get better and now trying to fill holes with PAs and Nurse Practioners. So while might look nice for a moment, will suck. University of Colorado is on site of the Fitzsimons property, could have easily incorporated care with them, but would have cost 75% less. One good thing is when they do something wrong, can stagger to a decent place for help. I hate the VA and wish I could move instead of putting all my marbles here, nothing more I wish. They will be responsible for my death one way or another
“Former Veterans Affairs worker from Whittier to plead guilty to taking bribes for covering up $11 million fraud scheme”
By Chris Yee Los Angles Daily News January 16, 2018
“A Whittier man who worked for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs was charged Tuesday for lying about accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes from a parking lot operator as part of a scheme that defrauded the agency of about $11 million, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Ralph Tillman, a 58-year-old contract officer for the VA, agreed to plead guilty to two felony charges — filing a false federal tax return and lying to investigators about accepting bribes — after admitting to taking more than $286,250 in bribes over 14 years from the owner of Westside Services LLC.
The company ran parking lots for care centers within the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. Richard Scott, the company’s 58-year-old owner, was charged in December with conspiracy and major fraud against the United States, among other offenses, according to the statement from the attorney’s office.
Scott pleaded not guilty to the charges last month. He is set to go on trial in U.S. Central District Court Feb. 6.
Tillman was responsible for managing contracts with “sharing partners” like Westside Services. In his plea agreement, Tillman admitted that he approached Scott in late 2003 and solicited a bribe to pay for a family matter.
Between one and two years later, Scott began making monthly cash payments to Tillman, with Scott personally delivering the bribes in sealed FedEx envelopes, according to the plea agreement. In return for the bribes, Tillman did not scrutinize annual statements from Westside Services that contained inaccurately reported revenues and expenses, according to the plea agreement.
Tillman admitted that he knew Scott was defrauding the VA out of millions of dollars and that he approved a contract extension with Westside Services in 2011 to continue the fraud and bribery scheme.”
Full Article at: https://www.dailynews.com/2018/01/16/former-veterans-affairs-worker-from-whittier-to-plead-guilty-to-taking-bribes-for-covering-up-11-million-fraud-scheme/
Prosecuting these crimes is not enough…They need to start using RICO statues and recover this money…
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