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Phoenix VA Still Not Living Up to Expectations

Phoenix VA Still Not Living Up to Expectations
October 05
14:53 2016

Patients in the Phoenix VA Health Care System are still unable to get timely specialist appointments after massive reform efforts, and delayed care may be to blame for at least one more veteran’s death, according to a new Office of the Inspector General report.

In a report issued Tuesday, inspectors identified 215 deceased patients who were awaiting specialist consultations on the date of death.

That included one veteran who “never received an appointment for a cardiology exam that could have prompted further definitive testing and interventions that could have forestalled his death.

The VA watchdog’s report comes more than two years after Phoenix became the hub of a nationwide VA scandal. The report portrays Phoenix VA clerks, clinicians and administrators as confused and in conflict about scheduling policies despite more than two years of reform and retraining.

“We have even more reason for outrage over the poor leadership, understaffing and lack of communication and coordination at the Phoenix VA,” said Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick. “More than two years after whistleblowers exposed terrible mismanagement and corruption at the Phoenix VA, we are still seeing deeply troubling reports like this one.”

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