VA Officials Answer To Vets In A Snap

VA Officials

Benjamin KrauseVeterans reaching out to VA officials like Secretary McDonald and Under Secretary Hickey have received stunningly fast responses via email, which is a dramatic change from the Shinseki era.

Secretary Robert McDonald took the helm at VA this summer and promised immediate action. Part of that action included canning four senior executives this past week for misconduct.

In a surprise turn, Secretary McDonald and Under Secretary Hickey have been reaching out to regular veterans by email and phone with stunning speed. Today, on my Facebook group, Disabled Veterans – Chapter 31 Voc Rehab, one veteran reported that Under Secretary Hickey responded to him within two hours. Likewise, Ron Nesler, head of VA is Lying, received immediate feedback by email as well.

Something is different in this “new” VA for sure. Perhaps they learned from the closed off nature of Shinseki’s VA and realized closing off officials from the outside would result in dishonest underlings sabotaging careers of their bosses through lies and misrepresentation. I still remember Secretary Shinseki intimating before Congress that he was misled. However, while he stayed locked away in his tower, those lying underlings stood to gain a great deal.

I would like to congratulate Secretary McDonald and Under Secretary Hickey for reaching out to veterans quickly and decisively. Aside from firing evil doers quickly, few other things will convert naysayers then direct contact from VA officials in certain instances.

Here are their emails:

Tell them ‘Hi’ from the community for me.

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  1. “VA Officials Answer To Vets In A Snap.”
    Hi, I’m a Vietnam Vet (Nam 67-68) now staying at a V.A. facility south of Boston (Brockton Ma VA)
    I think The Commit, The Article, The Notion————————————————————— “VA Officials Answer To Vets In A Snap”——————————————-COULD NOT BE ANY FATHER FROM THE TRUTH!!!!—————–
    As I wrote, I’m a Vietnam Vet. now staying at a V.A. facility south of Boston (Brockton Ma VA) And while staying here my most Valued Possessions have been STOLEN and No-One, I Repeat No-One, Here Gives A Flying Hoot!!!
    There are two locking draws in my room (Dual Occupancy) But Repeated Requests for a Key Were DENIED!!!! Now My Things are Gone!!!!!
    I have written V.A. Secretary Robert A McDonald many, many times and he has yet to Respond?!?!
    As I said to him I will say to You.———————————————————–
    “No Pain, No Illness, No Injury, will Ever see me Darken The Door of Another V.A. Facility” “NEVER”!!!!
    So I reject your notion that “VA Officials Answer To Vets In A Snap”
    and suggest the You research that notion a little further, better, more completely!!!!
    I think You Do The Veterans an Injustice by implying the
    V.A. REALLY Cares!!! The VA is filled with people looking for an Easy
    Pay Check and Long Term Benefits. That’s the view of some one here on the ground, looking at it every hour of every day.
    the View from the outside might look pretty but the view from in side is
    ugly and uncomfortable. Come and stay a week. You will be screaming and running for the door!!!
    Thanks For Nothing!!!
    John J. Shaughnessy

  2. Hi, I have been trying to reach VA Sec. McDonald for days now and no luck.
    I will try Your E-mail address and let You know what happened.

  3. Excuse the misspellings sometimes I have to find the right reading glasses, yes, that is plural as in six or seven pairs. Fibromyalgia effects many parts of the body including your eye sight. Mine is thankfully is just the reading part, but still damn annoying! Okay, no call from there, but when I finally got that nurse to read the same fraudulent test ran, ( distended bladder x 3 months, um NOPE, back pain?) I read it to her, “I pay close attention to details” wouldn’t you want me to if I was medical? Which I was in so many aspect, it is pretty hard to pull the B.S., over my eyes. When I stated since I had gotten my record since March a copy made, with the Marine who listens to every single word stated, he had replied to this doctor, “you all take no responsibility what so ever for what you do, and that is not how it should work.” ( he has worked with numerous attorneys in big dollar cases-and well, he is just “finally tuned.”) I had disagreed with one idiot doctor, because he canceled the neuro spine clinic consult, he felt pain management. When I respond I have tried everything? Do you not think he should respond with “what is everything you’ve tried?” I found an old journal, I happened to be seeing a pain management in Arizona, that was number 6. Still, exploding take my breathe away pain, I do mean squeezing the hell out of you, I went to my spine surgeon, back surgery number 3. Again my leg started acting up-6 months later pain management number 7, he could shove it, went to number 8, methadone, very addictive, so my regular doctor took it over. Now the laws of most states, records can be destroyed after 7 years. The records do not belong to you, I am just informing you, the VA doesn’t know “REAL LAWS” well hell, nor real MEDICINE TOO! I had an appointment, but due to the fact they’ve been dragging their asses, I now will have severe pain, not just my back but my legs too. Means, walking, sitting is totally a “no way in hell.” Partner cancels and tells them why, meanwhile I wrote my senator and told him of the numerous lies, alterations, and how one in the “real world” could be sued as it is a legal document. Some pain management guy calls, “just get your tests then you can complete your goals,” REALLY? A DOCTOR YOU ARE? Well, let me tell you the response I GOT! FROM THE DIRECTOR WHO STATED HE WANTED TO PROVIDE ME WITH THE BEST CARE ( yes, I am sure you lie, NO ONE SPEAKS TO YOU, because I have been calling and the run around I got was a “where’s Waldo” no one calls you back ever) but he goes on with this, “HOWEVER, YOU MISSED YOUR TEST ( canceled) AND YOU’VE INDICATED TO YOUR HEALTHCARE TEAM YOU’VE HAD RECTAL BLEEDING THAT CAN BE THE SOURCE OF YOUR BACK PAIN.” Okay, first off MORON, I indicated what your doctors who play “dress up” that the test done with NO CONTRAST, indicated a GI BLEED. That makes since in several aspects because of a device placed in my back 3rd time, can cause all kinds of issues-FDA WAS SCAMMED BY A DRUG COMPANY, SURPRISED ANYONE?
    SO, NO PAIN MANAGEMENT WILL I DO, ITS ANETHESIOLOGIST WHO NEVER HAVE THE SAME STANDARDS OF TREATMENT, STICK IT-I WILL NOT EVER GET TO WORK-I AM COMPLETELY DISABLED BY YOUR LACK OF CARE AND SOME IDIOT WHO WROTE MY CHRONIC BACK PAIN, TRUST ME, HIGH PAIN TOLERANCE LEVEL, 1st CHILD, NATURAL BIRTH, 33 HOURS SECOND STAGE LABOR, NOT COOL TO WATCH THE LACK OF ONE DOCTOR DOING THE RIGHT THING, CPR ON A CHRISTMAS MORNING. ( he lives, but I was one pissed off new mom!) I know the DEA has gone totally stupid in this war on drugs, HYDROCODONE a scheduled 2 drug, hey, it’s not morphine! In fact when it first came out? The biggest over prescribed with the dosage, your very own VA! I know my body, as each of you should-but then again that is all my thing, mind and body as well as seeing what is the mental capacity to lack at a job, and when they should be pink slipped! Oh, good line too-“she has taken many antidepressants over the years,” yes fools, that is because the “BELIEF FIBROMYALGIA WAS A LACK OF A SERITONIN UPTAKE”- it is a very new diagnosis that fits in with Autoimmune disorders and diseases. The other consult was for Rheumatology, gee, “been there, done that, saw the best in three surrounding states, no thanks!” Time to have an oversite committee, like a real hospital- and I will not have a problem explaining to the senator, the unbelievable F’d up VA here? FIRE, FIRE AND REPLACE QUITE A FEW! So, if there is cheese near bye, I bet you shall find lots of rats too!
    ( yes, my thesis paper on the lack of quality care at VA facilities, I do know some really good news reporters, do I worry? Hell no! But if you who cancel a consult states, “no evidence of a back surgery, pain doesn’t seem to match up with back pain symptoms” gee, that x-ray I purposely requested in your ER? And that “owner of it?” YUP-definitely both are way overly stupid!
    Just FYI-HM2 USN & USNR-A ( Desert Storm Veteran)
    ( obviously EMT)
    Medical Records Management
    1099-employee for SNF’S
    Certified Medical Biller and Coder by AHIMA ( passed the test 1st time, not all do)
    Was in School and wanted to do Social Work to Advocate on a Macro Level-for Veterans ( also have done volunteer work since I was 10 years old-no joke, giving back is important)
    And the hardest job but had fun, a mom to three wonderful adult individual, leaders, not followers, great children and one grandchild whom is going to be spoiled! ( she has her moms temper-don’t push us, we tend to put you in your place)
    No problem in hiring an attorney, do not care about money, money is highly over rated in the larger realm of the totality of life.

  4. I am the aformentioned Veteran who received a response within 2 hours of emailing Allison Hickey. I am, so far, seeing positive results. I received a call this morning informing me that I have a meeting at my RO with a DRO to get both my pending Appeal and TDIU Claim simultaneously resolved per the Secretary’s Office.

    I have no idea how this will pan out, but it is most definitely a step in the right direction!

    1. I have had 20 emails from Allison Hickey this week!!!! I would like to think this is for real but how does she have time to personally answer all emails? Does anyone know if this is for real and where it will lead?

  5. I don’t share Nesler or Krause’s tendency to give the new Sect and staff the benefit of the doubt. The first thing I would point to is why place a corporatist CEO in charge of a federal bureaucracy, and why continue to run the VA based on the corporate model? It’s a service agency with a very clear mission of existing to support veteran’s needs. Period. The ‘corporatist’ model is precisely what is responsible for the ‘incentive bonuses based on performance goals’, which is at the core of the delays and deleted files and wait lists (black lists?), etc. This agency has no business shoveling out bonuses. Period. Use the taxpayer’s money for the vets. Hire the doctors and specialists of which there is an alarming deficit (especially here in isolated Montana!). As for increased responsiveness, you’ve got to be joking: I submitted a few questions about DBC’s to the Helena Vets Town Hall meeting recently ( I was having a treadmill test that day, so submitted by email); never received any acknowledgement of my email, let alone notification of whether they chose it to read into the open mike series. I wrote the organizer of this session again and asked if they had received my submission, and if they had perhaps addressed the VA representatives with my questions. Guess what? Stonewalled. No reply. Now it’s been several weeks.
    I think at this point in time in our nation, no agency under the aegis of the federal govt., is to be trusted. This would include some little known or recognized agencies who are always supporting the State line, specifically the Bureau of Census and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. I believe they are responsible for cooking the numbers and supplying other agencies and departments with the outcomes they desire. I believe they should receive much more introspection by the public, and should be called to question.

  6. Do you think ALL Veterans should email these two and not wait in line for their claim to be processed? Patience is something we all learned in the military and I think too many Veterans want immediate answers when others have been waiting years longer. Just a thought, they too will eventually be overloaded if all Veterans think they should be first in line.

  7. The feelings about McDonald and Hickey are not solidified yet among the veteran community one way or the other (or inbetween the two poles). One thing though – McDonald and crew have their hands tied as to how fast they can act in firing people because, remember, it is the government we are talking about. McDonald is not chief GOD, ruler of rules you know. He has to act within his authority. He can’t just fire anyone he wants in the VA beurocracy. No one can. Yes, these people may have put in for retirement or secured other positions within the gov, and I hope they rot in them. I want to see many hundreds more get their asses kicked out of the VA in the months to come before I start forming an opinion at all. I want to see sparks made when their asses get bounced on the concrete, as a matter of fact. A big problem is to replace them with better management – the newbies would have to know the status quo of the VA in order to make changes – hopefully the right changes. Few people want to work for the VA at this point, unless you’re a mobster. The VA has the suckiest reputation of any organization I have ever heard of from top management to bottom-level employees. I only wish more citizens would take interest in what is going on here – it would tune them in to what they are in for as the country’s health care act becomes more gov controlled, as well as make them think of how their tax money is spent by the gov for the crap we get in return. I guess the gov would send it’s army and navy after those of us who complained though. Anyway, I do hope that much harder shake-up is coming to the VA.

    1. The “Bottom level employees” are not the bad guys. Many of them have been making diclosures about fraud and mismanagement for many years. The result of their efforts to clean up the VA? Extreme scrutiny,reprisal and retaliation for whistleblowing. The current “administration” is a RICO enterprise. Obama hates our military and our military veterans and is a usurper,fraud,traitor and spy. I worked for the VA Medical Center in Buffalo New York and retired in 2003. While working there as a Housekeeper, I was also a Union official. I have represented whistleblowers for over 35 years now. The VA-WNYHS is a microcosm of the cesspool that VA is. VA-WNYHS is in cahoots with the backstabbing Union Chairperson, Patricia Morrison of S.E.I.U. who actively colludes with management to undermine employees she does not like and to protect management officials that she does like.

      Then we have the so called protective administrative forums like the OSC who frequently takes their sweet time investigating incidents of whistleblower retaliation, delay case investigations and refuse to lend their full support to whistleblowers and some MSPB Judges who structure a whistleblower’s case in favor of management by excluding witnesses, relevant testimony and exercising undue preference to agency perpetrators of the retaliation. The system is rigged. “A dead fish rots from the head down”. Let’s hope that the new head fish doesn’t start rotting by being exposed to the rottenness that has been so prevalent since VA’s inception in 1930. Early on in that temporal proximity they deprived veterans of their rights when thousands of veterans marched on Washington during that era. It continues.

      1. Thank you for your reply and earnest comment. I appreciate it, Robert. One thing I have learned viewing the comments on this site is the veteran community is split and fractioned on who to blame for this f_____ VA system taxpayers are paying for, politically or otherwise. In anything I write, I try not to get too “acute” past a certain point. You can bet your ass the administration and VA officials and Congressional members are viewing these comments on this site and others. Who knows what they might try to do – perhaps even come up with an illegal method of shutting the site down. I’m sure they are wondering how all the the time. Because they are EVIL! And that ain’t no laughs.
        To clarify what I said in my above post about ‘bottom level employees’ I am referring to the clerks at VA clinics and hospitals that are worthless troublemakers, who are bored and discusted with their job and their lives, who look at you like you don’t exist or don’t deserve anything, who don’t know the answers to common questions you may have, who don’t want to learn anything or get the answer to your question, who say they will ‘speak’ to someone and are too stupid to have a short ‘why’ or ‘this don’t make sense’ question when they are told a stupid answer from their stupid supervisor and come back and tell you something stupid or unworkable anywhere on the face of the planet when there is no face-to-face between the veteran and the person you should speak to, and on and on. I do not mean all employees. There are, of course, employees like you detailed above. But there are sooooo many bad ones – people who shouldn’t have jobs and would get their asses fired if they were outside the VA. And there are soooo many stupid ass veterans also I overhear all the time that remain in the mindset of where they were 50 years ago when they were supposed to be dumb.
        I agree with what you stated about the whistle blower problems. And yes, the system is rigged for sure. I don’t want to make statement about Sec ‘Bob’ yet. Nobody in the world knows what’s going to happen from day to day. The key to all this is if the mass majority of citizens were to become concerned enough to bitch and yell, not just us veterans. I just don’t see that happening, and really never did at any point in time past. Less than one percent (-1%) of US citizens are in anyway connected to anyone in their family or circle of friends that has ever been in the military. In other countries (and we know who they all are) that percentage is over 60 percent (>60.0 %). Those percentages tell the story here in the US.

  8. To hold the DVA accountable of all claims, the DVA must be held accountable to : Congressional Research Services / Statutory Presumptives (by law clerk Nichols October 2010); And, The Nehmer Court Order, The Nehmer Training Guide February 2010 Revised. One should not have to hire a lawyer (or group of lawyers) to hold the DVA accountable by taking the DVA back to court !

    1. Mr Erhard Sr. I was a Commander of a DAV Chapter 154 in Concord, California in the mid 1980’s and along with the Vice Commander we were able to get members to attend meetings. We did have a great turn out and this was noticed by the State DAV Commander in a phone call to me at my home in Benicia, California. He complimented us on the attendance that Chapter 154 was having over a period of time and wanted to have a district meeting at our hall. I said, “that would be great but, one thing there will be no drinking before or after the meeting.” He said, “No drinking?” I said, “Yes no drinking. This the Disabled American Veterans and most everyone is on some sort of medication and we don’t want to be responsible for anyone getting hurt by drug reaction, car accident and defiantly not a innocent person that may be injured or worse by someone drinking at our Chapter meeting.” He changed the location to another DAV Chapter in another county. That is when I quit the DAV! Other things play into this but, it all boils down to they are in bed with the VA as are the NSO’s and VSO’s I have met….FTVA!

  9. I trust Benjamin greatly and wanted to have some faith that the VA was going to turn around. Yet the new Secretary got up and lied when he said that they fired 4 officials.

    Three got full retirement and another was actually hired by another Federal Agency.

    IG reports recommending criminal prosecution are doctored by the administration before release.

    They lie in reports, sworn testimony and public communications.

    “Meet the new boss, Same as the old boss” Pete Townshend. 1971

    1. I saw this just after I wrote that story earlier in the week. It was an apparent marketing sham by VA to appear like they are doing the work they claimed to do regarding firing these execs. In reality, there is no punishment, just retirement.

      1. Not justifying it but what kind of punishment could have they even given them in the first place. Maybe try to recoup a bonus but if they are not an active employee you get nothing. Maybe fire them but It doesn’t matter if they were fired or not, retirement eligibility has nothing to do with it. They met the requirements for retirement and very few circumstances warrant not allowing someone to retire once they meet the minimum requirements. I think the only think you can really say is a punishment is they were forced to retire earlier than maybe they planned which may reduce their future retirement comensation. Maybe they care maybe they don’t.

    2. YEP! The V.A. Oversight Committee is a Dog & Pony show. No One, Will Ever get prosecuted for Perjury. THEY ALL LIE , This “Show” is just to try to make Vets “Think” there will be something done.
      “In the back room they get together and say. “I`m going to get on your ass but, It`s ok, I don`t really mean it, ok?” Then they start the show. A Lawyer don`t do anything unless he`s going to get something for it. Same in Politics. UNLESS They are Positive they`ll win, They won`t even talk to you.
      If a U.P S. truck runs a red light and runs over you in a cross walk, Your phone wont stop ringing. or there wont be enough parking space at the Hospital. See one, You`ve seen them all.

  10. I believe that Secretary Robert McDonald and General Hickey are straight shooters and on the up and up. You can put me down as a fan of the pair.They have a tough job to do, because the entrenched crooked VA middle managers are going to fight them every step of the way. I believe the BEST way that ordinary vets can help Sec McDonald and Under Secretary Hickey is by raising Holy Hell as loudly as possible about the crooks in the middle of the VA bureaucracy, and I intend to do just that, and HOPE all vets will join me. VA reform is NOW possible.

    1. The entire V.A. and this country is nothing less than a very sick joke. I’m 47 yrs. old and have served Honorably for more than 5 yrs. I suffered a herniated disc while in the navy more than 26 yrs. ago and have never been provided any healthcare. In 2008 I suffered an On The Job injury thru no fault of my own and have multiple herniated discs. I have been to dozens of doctors, hospitals and V.A.’s, and was never been provided any healthcare because not anyone would cover it, workers comp and insurance companies due to cover back injuries. The V.A. and disability judge said the country is broke and that I must be 65 yrs. old before I’m entitled to any healthcare, disability or benefits. The judge said the only way that I could have disability is that if I got surgery 1st and they messed them up. The V.A. medical and dental is only for vets with medical discharges only. It is around $450,000 for me to have surgery that I must pay 100% of the cost at least 30 days in advanced. The V.A. said I cannot work, but are not allowed to sign anything until I’m 65 yrs. old. I have contacted all of my state’s representatives, congress, state medical board of OH, V.A. regional, V.A. inspector general, OH supreme court, U.S. supreme court, Bob McDonald and others all by Priority Signature Mail several times and I have to be 65 yrs. old before I receive any help.

  11. Well that is good news and refreshing I certainly will take no issue with the crap I’ve had to put up with and character assignations! My list will be long but damn I can back it up, and as stated, “you want a war you got one, meet my maiden name!” Vinciguerra translation is “winner of war.” They can’t read nor comprehend a report, but refreshing that since June of 2013, ONE NURSE has been The ONLY PROFESSIONALS and understands what an oath means. Imposters quite a few on the loose, pink slip time! Not one so called person in charge at Dallas has returned a call, for shame!

  12. I got a call from Sec office … I’m more than willing to withdrawal RICO Act and 38USC511_lawsuit if they begin to redress all our concerns administratively. That begins by firing all lawyers who abused their powers …

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