An investigation into a Colorado Springs VA clinic brought to light some very troubling news.
Department of Veterans Affairs clinics in Colorado kept secret wait lists of patients and underreported chronic delays in treatment, according to an investigation Thursday that was the second report this week of failures in VA handling of mental health care.
The VA Inspector General found that the agency’s health care facilities in Denver, Golden and Colorado Springs used “unofficial wait lists” and failed to follow rules for keeping track of veterans seeking treatment for problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder.
“The lists did not effectively identify veterans waiting for care or the length of their wait time,” the report said. “As a result, facility management could not make effective staffing decisions to ensure it addressed all requests.”
The VA clinic in Colorado Springs underreported patient wait times in 91 percent of cases in fiscal 2016 and wrongly denied at least 210 veterans access to the popular Veterans Choice Program that allows treatment by private doctors.
“Veterans experienced under-reported delays by an estimated 50 days for initial treatment, and management did not have assurance that staff attempted to schedule all veterans,” the inspector general said.
Lawmakers requested the investigation last year after a whistleblower reported that the Colorado Springs clinic may have falsified documents after a 26-year-old Army Ranger committed suicide while waiting for post-traumatic stress disorder care. Those lawmakers said Thursday that the report confirmed some of their worst fears.
This is truly disturbing. Our Veterans should never be left without proper healthcare. Under Obama, we saw this become the norm. The VA constantly not doing their job and it led to the deaths of far too many Veterans. As the article states this corruption happened while Obama was still President and Donald Trump needs to make sure this stuff ends.