The Trump administration faces many, many challenges after nearly a decade of government maladministration under Barack Obama. Obama has changed the entire ethos of government from one where at least public service and accountability were mouthed, in not believed, to one in which the federal government is a cruel and unresponsive master of the population.
When Christ warned us, “what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me” he was almost certainly talking about the VA medical system.
A physician assistant who resigned in the wake of a patient death at the Oklahoma Veterans Center at Talihina has a history of disciplinary action and has already been rehired at another veterans center, the Tulsa World has learned.
Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs officials said previously that four staff members — one physician assistant and three registered nurses — had resigned after Vietnam veteran Owen Reese Peterson was found with maggots in a wound and later died on Oct. 3.
If you want to understand just how deep the lack of accountability goes in the VA consider this.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has for years assigned star ratings for each of its medical centers based on the quality of care and service they provide, but the agency has repeatedly refused to make them public, saying they are meant for internal use only.
Don’t you think this would be good information for the public to have? If you could choose between going to a one-star or five-star facility, I’m sure most of us would want the five-star one. The exception would be Democrats who were willing to send loved ones to a one-star facility to avoid ruining its self-esteem.
What possible reason could the VA have for keeping these rating secret from its customers and from Congress?
[VA Undersecretary for Health David] Shulkin said he was apprehensive about any ratings becoming public. “My concern is that veterans are going to see that their hospital is a ‘one’ in our star system, assume that’s bad quality and veterans that need care are not going to get care,” he said. “And they’re going to stay away from hospitals and that’s going to hurt people.”
Either Shulkin is presiding over a totally bogus ranking system (and, in all fairness, the government generates bogus ranking systems the like copulating rats) or the “people” he’s concerned about are not dead veterans but rather the careers of VA staffers. After USA Today ran their investigation, the VA begrudgingly released their rating data.
Ten of 146 facilities have a one-star rating, prompting this response from the VA Secretary:
“To be clear, no VA medical facility is bad or failing,” McDonald wrote in a letter to the editor of USA TODAY.
Right, because dying of neglect with maggots in your body is just baked in to the VA care system.
Whoever takes the helm at the VA will face a grossly incompetent and implacable bureaucracy intent upon preserving itself rather than carrying out its mission of caring for veterans. The incoming administration will also face an ecosystem in which the VA is protected from reform by a phalanx of veterans service organizations that actually profit from VA incompetence by using their ability to deal with the VA bureaucracy as a recruiting tool.