From the Office of State Senator Leticia Van de Putte

For Immediate Release
May 28, 2014
Contact: Lee Nichols, 512-463-0126

Sen. Van de Putte Calls for VA Accountability

(San Antonio) -- A report issued today by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) confirms that systemic problems exist in the VA's Health Administration. The report detailed nationwide and long-standing problems with improper logging and manipulation of wait times for veterans to receive medical care. Texas state Senator Leticia Van de Putte, Chair of the Senate Committee on Veteran Affairs and Military Installations, issued the following statement:

"From the beginning, I've believed the wait list issue was systemic. This OIG report confirms it.VA staff need to be held accountable. I mean fired, not allowed to retire with a pension, so they can't cheat veterans and then live out their lives on a comfortable government salary. If veterans died because of intentionally manipulating waiting lists, somebody needs to go to jail.

"While our reality is that this is a federally run and funded agency that serves Texas residents, that does not mean that Texas cannot ensure that our veterans are taken care of in the honorable way they deserve and have earned. I am working with Texas leaders to set up a Veteran Hotline in cooperation with the Texas Veterans Commission and the Texas Veterans Land Board. Through expanded Strike Force Teams, TVC will be able to help veterans navigate the VA's complicated system and get the medical appointments they need."

ADDITIONAL INFO: The Senate Veteran Affairs and Military Installations Committee will be meeting at the Port of Houston on June 12 to take up this issue and give veterans a chance to voice their concerns directly to the committee.