OIG Continues To Blindly Spin Phoenix VA Cover-up Fraud

VA Cover-up Fraud

VAOIG head Richard Griffin continues to spin the active VA cover-up of frauds committed by VA employees at Phoenix VA leading up to the wait list scandal CNN exposed in April.

But I have a question. When will VA just own up to the fact that the wait list scandal was a fraud and say, “We are sorry for killing veterans…,”? Instead, doesn’t it just seem like VA is playing semantics to distract from the bigger crimes against veterans? Who cares if it occurred in 2008 or 2010?

In a press release yesterday, Griffin attempted to discount the newly admitted cover-up of an unreleased 2008 memorandum that highlighted wait list manipulations. Griffin promised VA would release the memorandum by end of work today, but that promise was not satisfied. At the time of this writing, the memorandum was still unpublished.

In line with VA ethics and logic, Griffin seems to believe it is better that VA condoned the fraud rather than cover-up the fraud and continues to argue that VA mentioned it was committing crimes to meet performance standards — knowingly.

How does this make sense? Rather than own up to past crimes, VA fixates on arguments about when it may or may not have admitted to its own knowledge of the crimes while failing to acknowledge its employees broke the law and killed vets while profiting. Why does this matter now? We know they killed vets for their own profit. End of story.

Regardless, VA OIG seems to want to get the last word on all issues within the press at all collateral costs, and I cannot figure how this kind of political maneuvering is appropriate. My only thought is that the White House is pressuring VA to counter all plausible allegations up until this election cycle passes.

These kinds of VA OIG responses to reporters and Congress are inappropriate and serve to do little more than undermine the agency’s credibility more than merely shutting the hell up. It looks like Griffin is behaving like the little child we all grew up with who had to always get the last word even when it killed his own argument.

Why not just admit that VA employees were engaged in known crimes and at least say, “I am sorry we did not do more but Bob will change that now. You’re welcome. Bob.” Instead, they are arguing over nonsense and acting like fools.

Here is the press release from Acting VA Inspector General:

The Phoenix VA Health Care System is again in the news due to media reporting on a September 2, 2008, VA Office of Inspector General memorandum of administrative investigation into allegations involving altered appointments and failure to use the electronic wait list. Suggestions from the media and some Members of Congress that the OIG kept secret inappropriate scheduling practices are belied by nearly a decade of reporting that is outlined in the attached chronology, Keeping Congress and VA Secretary Informed: VA Office of Inspector General’s Reporting on Patient Wait Times from 2005-2014. We encourage serious readers to consider the persistent alarms the OIG has raised on patient wait times and scheduling practices—alarms acknowledged on numerous occasions by Congress at oversight hearings.

In regard to the September 2008 memorandum, our investigation concluded that altering appointments was an accepted past practice to avoid wait times greater than 30 days, and that through a failure to properly communicate a requirement to adhere to policy, some employees continued this practice without management’s awareness. Several supervisors and schedulers reported the practice had stopped, but at different times, and both management and staff were confused as to the proper way to schedule appointments. At the time, we believed that a warning in the form of a memorandum of administrative investigation was sufficient to advise the Phoenix HCS Director of the problem so the Director could take corrective action.

Moreover, less than 4 months earlier, the OIG published a report, Audit of Alleged Manipulation of Waiting Times in Veterans Integrated Service Network 3, which includes the VA Under Secretary for Health’s assurance that the Veterans Health Administration was already addressing our concerns with national solutions, to include new scheduling policy, software modifications, and training for 41,000 schedulers. While 20/20 hindsight is a trait in common abundance, we could not predict 6 years ago the string of broken promises to fix wait times and scheduling problems.

It should be noted that the OIG’s final report, Review of Alleged Patient Deaths, Patient Wait Times, and Scheduling Practices at the Phoenix VA Health Care System, cited the 2008 memorandum in Appendix E, contrary to assertions that the memorandum was kept secret. While the vast majority of OIG oversight reports are published on the OIG website, reports of administrative investigation—which contain protected Privacy Act information—typically are provided to congressional oversight committees upon request and may be released publicly if we receive a request under FOIA. We provided a copy of the September 2, 2008, memorandum to the U.S. House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs on October 2, 2014, which was the first time a request was made for this memorandum. To set the record straight, we are releasing a redacted version of this memorandum on the OIG website today.

SEE IT HERE: https://www.va.gov/oig/articles/VAOIG-statement-20141027-griffin.pdf

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  1. I think the writer has a good idea of what the VA is about. The VA is corrupt at its core. This has become more prevelant as the VA abuses its authority over and over. Also, the conflicting press releases, omg, they are covering up so much more. I was working of the VA for over 5 years until I was fired for whistle blowing. Nothing could prepare your for the lies, deciet, and cover ups by management. They came after me as a group after I reported my concerns. The OIG sat on their hands three times I reported the problems with abuse of power, waste of resources (over 300 million), and retaliation for reporting my concerns. The VA, the OIG, the Office of Regional Counsel, General Counsel, all of them are in on it. Even, Feinstein, Honda, Pelosi….. the list goes on and on. All have known but not done anything out of personal gain. Sad.

  2. The VA didn’t invent all they “claim” they are FOS and cannot keep their SOS together therefore they just lie lie lie-( don’t get that confused with the Jewish way of celebrating) as stated; McDonald or MacDonald and 15% beef! Just in case you do not know FOS is FULL OF SHIT! ( medical, we are a creative group) and SOS is not we need help, it means you gotta keep your SHIT IN ONE SOCK!
    Just so you know the so called “help line?” Here it is folks ready for it? A letter to the Director who wants to give you his BLAH blah care, “HOWEVER,” ( okay, if this guy is so educated, did he ever learn that the best way to rectify a situation is not using words like your scolding a 3 year old? Oh and yes, his signature if it is one, my grandchild not quiet 3 could do better and certainly tell him, “NOT NICE!” ) you missed your appointment SEPTEMBER 9, and you need to be seen by pain management ( fuck off and die you bastard-pain management 8 times-this a surgery needed I know the score so feed your crap to the ones who don’t!) I happened to be up all night in serious severe pain and both legs were affected so severely there was no way on this planet could I ever sit in a car for an hour, and how many times do you have to play “repeat” call me first before you think it’s okay to make an appointment?
    But it gets better because since March I had stated NO CONTRAST WAS EVER USED CAN YOU NOT READ NOR COMPREHEND OR PAY ATTENTION TO THE DETAILS? WELL, ONE NURSE I STATED LET ME READ THIS REPORT TO YOU, LIMITED NON-CONTRAST STUDY ( FRAUD DEFINITELY WHEN NO I DID NOT HAVE A DISTENDED BLADDER X THREE MONTHS) SO I READ IT AND SHE FOLLOWS ALONG, IT STATES UNDIGESTED CONTENTS COATED LIKE CONTRAST, BUT THEORHETICALLY GI BLEED. Now I said to the nurse tell the doctor to read the last surgery report, look up the device, major wow factor, and realize “his promise for contrast to be used” never was but recorded on my phone, that it would be!

  3. Does anyone know why, in the past 6 years, an IG wasn’t appointed? In other words, why is this guy acting as head guy and just the acting IG?…Is the reason to get around something or someone?

    1. The administrators within the VA anywhere in the U.S.A. insist on saying: “By regulation Blah, Blah, Blah says we can do this…” I find in the past 46 year’s that they do much harm than good! If a veteran has had a good outcome and praises the VA Medical they accidently received the VA will milk that to death, even have the veteran and the veterans family pictured and smiling. While this propaganda footage is being filmed, 22 Veterans Commit Suicide, untold numbers of veterans still are homeless and are denied compensation for obvious injuries that were documented in their military record’s. Sec. McDonald when he first commented on the thing’s he was going to implement, the changes and blah, blah! I have to say the VA Medical is FUBAR and it will take some time possibly year’s to fix it. But, we have all the carnage they have caused and as I have seen in the Martinez, California VA Medical Clinic things are the same and for myself, I would say as I have seen and heard at this very same clinic SNAFU! A medical person by the last name of Alba wanted me to have a MRI. I have had Alba as a PC doctor for a few year’s he should have known about my service connected injury from Vietnam, (I received a head wound by Grenade Shrapnel and the metal is still in my brain) he had no idea about my SCI!!! This is a window into why so many of us veterans are killed in surgeries or just simple medical procedures…or the standard ignore, ignore, threat, belittle, bully, laugh and make fun of the veteran and then get a bonus paid every time a veteran is laid to rest. FTVA!

  4. This video ties in perfectly with Ben’s editorial today.

    As you watch the video, insert ‘veteran’ whenever the word ‘black’ is said.

    Then you can understand why nothing changes at the VA.

    1. Democrat? Republican? Different wings of the same bird of prey. Lets all 3rd party vote because it doesn’t matter which wing of the vulture you vote for ……. time for a 3rd political party…. call it Green, Libertarian or Independent, but stop voting for the same parties that got us where we are today.

  5. What are you going to say when vets starting dying from the Ebola that Obama is ready to import into America after the elections?


    It’s no secret that Obama prefers non-Americans over Americans.

    The fact that Obama is so willing to endanger you, your family, and other veterans should make you realize how dangerously viral his extreme anti-veteran and anti-American left-wing Obola ideology is.

    As for the other Democrat politicians running for election in November, they all have Obola-blood running in their stealthy anti-veteran and anti-American agendas and policies.

    This Obola blood is tainted, its the political form of Ebola, and we are not safe from it. Remember this when someone tells you how great Obama is, or how a Democrat politician tries to cover up their feral adoration of Obama in a sinister effort to confuse, deceive, and ignore what is shortly coming down the roads of Main Street, America…Ebola and Obola doom!

    So get ready for the new Obola slogan, “Change you can breathe in!”

    The only vaccine for Obala is the anti-Obama vote!

  6. The only thing Secretary McDonald did not say yet: “Hi, I am the new Secretary of the VA. Let’s forget about how the VA invented every great invention known to mankind. I want to talk about how the VA, under my leadership, can fairly take credit for those 1,800 colleges and universities I mentioned that have wonderful relationships with veterans and provide all sorts of great services. Well, I take credit for that too. I in fact have for the last 40 years ran all these higher educational institutions in my spare time when I am not feeding the homeless, including veterans, at food shelters. I made sure that vets get to spend their G.I. Bill benefits at those colleges that I run, and I do it all just like God does things. I am everywhere, I take credit for all the good that happens in the world, I can be in thousands of places, an infinite number of places at the same time, bringing blessings to people, especially veterans, and particularly at colleges. The VA is truly a wonderful place, I am the best Secretary the VA has ever had, and so please don’t listen to anyone about any of those lies that there are major, insanely major, problems at the VA that greatly harms vets. It just isn’t true, and my God-like skills for what I like to call “colleges for vets, created by me, God 2.0”, is really the savior of mankind. Those many thousands of vets out there and their family and friends are just wrong and kind of paranoid to say we let vets die or maybe are actually killing them off on purpose with no or poor medical care. Last thing i would like to say is that I am still sending out those Obama Care brochures like some of you have gotten in the past few days because you vets need to understand that Obama Care is a lot more important than veterans medical care and specific pesky things like that. Well, have a nice day, but remember, I am God. The God of the VA for sure, and if you want to make me your personal God for everything then I will love that too.

  7. VA is LYING, and so is VAOIG. The Congress, the President and VA Secretary McDonald all KNOW this, but they will NOT act. Do they ALL fear VA?


      1. I believe you are doing great reporting but do you realize how they play people like me off? Let me say this, severe pain causes severe mental anguish, and yet because of a “Freudian Phrase” one doctor understood my symptoms, created a consult and the other doctor had some kind of envy issues, this guy wrote lies. I wonder, “who is doing damage control now as my own doctor wrote and clearly stated my concerns regarding the addictive nature of drugs? Oh and this is not pain management, I may end up with a wheel chair, but I will not let them physically touch me. They’ve proven through documentation a reason not to trust them! Now, Hydrocodone does not work on me like others, it takes the pain away but I am that 2% who reacts oppositely, meaning it keeps me awake and it sucks, addiction means you crave more, never did, however an increase after a car accident and still never took the limit. I have an attorney-and of course the medical records that will provide the illegal factor, dumb isn’t up in here. If you only knew BEN those I’ve talked with and asked one of my “Professors thoughts.” You see, you must be a total well being and objective, on this, she agreed I am doing the right thing. However, why hasn’t the VA been doing the “right thing?” Trust me, if they feel you’re trouble a game is played, however this one backfired on them, sadly I took a big step back in time. PTSD full on, and all I can do right now is concentrate on what needs to be done, but, one other thing too will be attempted-my truth-their lies, and yes, “please do complete that DBQ handed to you, or would you like the news to know? The stories are surfacing BEN, and I shall support my brothers and sisters who “volunteered to serve, not service others.” The VA has bloody hands BEN. A fact you know is a truth. No statistics, it reminds me of human lab rats, and let’s see what works, what doesn’t and if shortcuts help? Revolving doors or a casket-neither should ever be a choice! So, ready, get set, and I may privately update you, as I do believe you stated a win for bad VA records? I wonder why no review committee? ( like a normal hospital, made up of a group of individuals-not attorneys who wish for you to send in the errors-yeah, as stated, no stupid here!) interesting, a person who was teaching, and man did I put in a major complaint both with the dean and the disability office! How many notes does one need to declare an obviously disabled person? And to think she stated the rule did not apply to her-special because she “was” a judge, I could have sued, but, if this is the one? It’s hammer time!

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